Enbridge to shed costs of oil sand pipelines by $320 million

Enbridge to shed costs of oil sand pipelines by $320 millionCanada’s Enbridge Inc. (TSX, NYSE:ENB), the country's largest pipeline company, will broaden two lines carrying crude from the oil sands while cutting about US$320 million (Cdn$400 million) from their original price tag.

The planned optimization includes the Athabasca Twin and the Wood Buffalo extension projects, which will have a combined cost of Cdn$2.6 billion, down from its prior Cdn$3 billion estimate, according to the company.

"By combining the Wood Buffalo Extension Project and the Athabasca Pipeline Twin, we will be able to deliver significant toll savings to our shippers while meeting all our contractual commitments to them,” Liquids Pipelines President, Guy Jarvis, said in a statement.

The improvements will see the Wood Buffalo extension project, which runs 100 km from the Cheecham terminal in the oil sands to Kirby Lake, add 36 inches to its diameter, six more than previously planned.

Athabasca Twin, carrying crude from Cheecham to Hardisty, in Alberta, will increase pumping capacity to boost its throughput to 800,000 barrels per day from 450,000 bpd.

Both pipes are being expanded to handle oil shipped from Suncor Energy Inc's planned Fort Hills oil sands project.