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Enbridge is moving closer to potentially beginning construction in the United States on the replacement of Line 3. This replacement is designed to carry increased volumes of Canadian crude oil to the US market after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced approvals of federal permits for the project.
Enbridge's Line 3 Replacement project will replace the existing 34-inch pipe with new 36-inch pipe for 13 miles in North Dakota, 337 miles in Minnesota, and 14 miles in Wisconsin. The average annual capacity of Line 3 after replacement is planned to be 760,000 barrels per day (bpd).
"We have now received all federal permits required for replacing Line 3, an essential maintenance project that will better protect Minnesota communities and the environment," Leo Golden, Vice President of Line 3 Execution, said in a statement, adding that Enbridge still needs final state permits and authorizations are still needed before work can begin.
The company hopes it can begin construction before the end of the year.
Earlier this month, Enbridge received a set of permits from Minnesota regulators that would allow it to push ahead with its Line 3 replacement project, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency said.
The agency noted it had placed stringent environmental protection conditions on the permits.
"The MPCA has used sound science and thorough analysis to ensure that necessary safeguards are in place to protect Minnesota's waters. The 401 certification requires Enbridge to meet Minnesota's extensive water quality standards instead of lower federal standards," said Laura Bishop, MPCA Commissioner.
The final permits the project needs are the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency issuing a final construction stormwater permit and the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission issuing the authorization to construct.
Line 3 is one of the hopes for Canada's oil producers to have crude oil takeaway capacity out of Alberta increased, and possibly one of the best chances for this, considering that Joe Biden could move to kill Keystone XL, which was resurrected by U.S. President Donald Trump.
By Josh Owens for Oilprice.com
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Josh Owens is the Content Director at Oilprice.com. An International Relations and Politics graduate from the University of Edinburgh, Josh specialized in Middle East and…