Last updateThu, 04 Jun 2020 6pm

Construction Set to Resume on Keystone XL Pipeline

TC Energy Corporation will proceed with construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline Project, an $8.0 billion investment. At 1,210-miles in length, the pipeline will be capable of safely delivering 830,000 barrels per day of crude oil from Alberta, Canada to Steele City, NE where it will connect with TC Energy’s existing facilities to reach U.S. Gulf Coast refiners to meet critical needs for transportation fuel and manufactured products. With pre-construction activities underway, the pipeline is expected to enter service in 2023. 

Goldman Sachs: Shale Positioned Well to Withstand Downturn

In a note dated March 31, Goldman analyst Damien Courvalin says that “(s)hale’s high-pressured wells and short drilling time mean the industry is well positioned to benefit if the current plunge in oil causes long-term damage to production capacity, resulting in a price jump when demand returns,” Bloomberg reports.

“The note of optimism runs counter to the steady drumbeat of bad news that’s hit the shale patch since oil prices collapsed amid simultaneous supply and demand shocks. The price plunge instantly made thousands of prospective shale sites money-losing propositions.” 

DHS Issues Guidance to Clarify Essential Areas of Work

The Department of Homeland Security has issued new guidelines for 21 areas of construction that supports infrastructure on work deemed essential to continue during the coronavirus pandemic.

“On the agency list are construction of energy and renewable energy projects, including their environmental remediation, and construction of onshore and offshore petroleum projects, including pipeline and liquified natural gas (LNG) construction,” Engineering News-Record reports.

“The list also now covers construction of water and wastewater infrastructure, hospitals, including temporary construction, housing, transportation and communications, among others.”

API Issues Standards for Natural Gas Gathering Pipelines

API issued two standards, Recommended Practice (RP) 1182 and the second edition of RP 80, designed to address the safe operation of larger-diameter gathering pipelines used to transport natural gas from production sites to larger interstate pipelines.

The standard helps ensure large-diameter, high-pressure gathering pipelines employ integrity management practices that prioritize routine maintenance and inspections to promote safety and operational efficiency.

“These standards will enhance safety and operational efficiency, while assisting industry in meeting state and federal rules for the safe operation of natural gas gathering pipelines,” said Global Industry Services Senior Vice President Debra Phillips. “Additionally, these standards work together to ensure that the nation continues to benefit from historic shale development by delivering affordable, reliable energy to the American people through safe and sustainable infrastructure.”

Global Chemicals Output Fell Sharply in February

Data collected and tabulated by the American Chemistry Council show that led by a large decline in China due to the COVID-19 coronavirus, global chemicals production fell 2.4% in February, an acceleration from the 0.8% decline in January. Headline global production was off 1.5% year-over-year (Y/Y) on a three-month moving average basis and stood at 115.0% of its average 2012 levels.

During February, global capacity rose by 0.3% and was up 3.3% Y/Y. As a result, with the decline in production, capacity utilization in the global chemical industry fell 2.1 points to 79.3%. This is down from 83.2% last January, below the long-term (1987-2017) average of 86.5%, and the first time below 80% since August 2009.

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