Enterprise, Enbridge to build Cushing-Houston crude oil pipeline

Enterprise Products Partners LP and Enbridge Inc. plan to design, build, and operate an 800,000-b/d crude oil pipeline from the hub at Cushing, Okla., to the Texas Gulf Coast refining complex. The proposed 36-in. OD Wrangler Pipeline will originate at the existing Enbridge Cushing terminal and extend about 500 miles southward, closely following existing pipeline corridors, to Enterprise's ECHO crude oil storage terminal in southeast Harris County, Tex., providing access to refineries in Texas City, Pasadena/Deer Park, Baytown, and along the Houston Ship Channel.

The Wrangler Pipeline will accommodate quality controlled batches of a variety of grades and sources of oil. New storage necessary for pipeline operations will be at the ECHO site and included in the joint venture. The project will also include an 85-mile pipeline to the Beaumont/Port Arthur refining center.

EPP and Enbridge announced a binding open commitment period for available capacity on the pipeline, which will begin Oct. 3 and continue until Nov. 2.

Subject to the required regulatory approvals and sufficient long-term commitments from interested shippers, the companies expect the pipeline to enter service by mid-2013. Enbridge will manage construction of the project with Enterprise serving as operator.

EPP and Energy Transfer Partners LP agreed earlier this year to form a 50-50 joint venture to build a more than 400,000 b/d oil pipeline from Cushing to Houston (OGJ Online, Apr. 27, 2011). The companies cancelled this project in August due to insufficient shipper interest.

Enbridge had previously announced its own Monarch pipeline project to move light oil to Houston from Cushing by 2014 at an initial capacity of 370,000 b/d, expandable to 480,000 b/d (OGJ Online, Feb. 16, 2011). Wrangler will presumably replace Monarch as Enbridge’s route for delivering Cushing crude to the Houston-area refining center.

Contact Christopher E. Smith at chriss@ogjonline.com.

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