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Report: Gulf Coast Pipeline Operations Delayed Until 2014

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Genscape

Genscape aerial photograph captures exposed pipe along ROW

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Based on observations during a flyover on Aug. 18, construction of the Keystone Gulf Coast Pipeline (KGCP) is slightly behind plan, according to Genscape, an energy intelligence provider.

On Aug. 20, TransCanada said construction was more than 90 percent complete and that the pipe was expected to be in service by the end of this year. Genscape believes this estimate to be optimistic based on construction progress. Genscape now estimates the first quarter of 2014 to be a more realistic in-service date. The bulk of work remaining on the project is centered on the Cushing, Okla., pumping station and along the pipeline right of way.

At the Cushing terminal, four of the seven newly constructed tanks have hydrotested with a fifth tank currently hydrotesting. However, mixer installation and tank pipeline connections have yet to be completed for any of the seven new tanks. Genscape believes that completed tank capacity and associated connections are necessary for initial KGCP fill. The terminal, when complete, will contain 2.25 million barrels of storage capacity.

Exposed pipe was observed near the Tupelo, Bryan, Delta and Lake Tyler facilities. Crews were observed working on pipeline connectivity along the right of way. The Cromwell, Bryan and Winnsboro pumping stations each have four pumps installed, and pipeline infrastructure looks to be nearing completion, Genscape reported. Ground preparation continues at the Tupelo, Delta and Lake Tyler facilities.

KGCP is a 36-in. diameter line that will flow 485 miles from Cushing to Nederland, Texas. The line will have an initial capacity of 700,000 barrels per day (bpd) with the option to expand to 830,000 bpd. Linefill for KGCP is approximately 3.2 million barrels. Genscape estimates it will take approximately 40 to 60 days to fill the line at near 54,000 to 81,000 bpd fill rate. The Keystone pipeline from Hardisty, Alberta, to Patoka, Ill., took nearly 180 days to fill in 2010 at near 50,000 bpd fill rate. Linefill for Keystone to Patoka was approximately 9.2 million barrels.

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