TransCanada begins filling 700,000 bpd capacity Gulf Coast oil pipeline

TransCanada begins filling 700,000 bpd capacity Gulf Coast oil pipeline TransCanada Corp announced Dec. 9 it started to fill its pipeline to transfer Canadian crude to the Gulf Coast in the U.S. before its startup delivery date in January, 2014, Bloomberg reported.

As the southern portion of the Calgary pipeline company's Keystone XL project, the line stretches from Cushing, Okla., to Texas refineries in the Gulf Coast.

The pipeline has the capacity to transport 700,000 barrels per day of crude, according to Reuters. Fill operations were underway Dec. 7, TransCanada spokesman Shawn Howard said in an email. The line, operated by TransCanada subsidiary Marketlink, will require 3 million barrels of oil before its completion date by mid-to-late January. Canadian pipeline operator Enbridge Inc. is also expected to finish its Flanagan South pipeline from Illinois to Cushing to expand the Gulf Coast's transportation infrastructure.

"The line fill on Marketlink is going to be helping a little bit, because it seems like Cushing is going to be short heavy barrels until Flanagan comes on next year," said Chris MacCulloch, an analyst for Desjardins Securities Inc. in Calgary, according to Bloomberg.

TransCanada did not state when the southern leg of its Keystone XL pipeline will open for commercial service.

More information on the global pipeline industry can be found on PennEnergy's research area.

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