Keyera, Plains explore Deep basin Alberta NGL pipeline

Keyera Corp. and Plains Midstream Canada ULC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Plains All American Pipeline LP, are soliciting interest in construction of a jointly owned NGL system in northwest Alberta. The proposed Western Reach Pipeline System would extend from the Gordondale area of northwestern Alberta to the NGL hub in Fort Saskatchewan. Keyera and Plains have begun an open season process seeking nonbinding nominations for volumes to underpin construction.

Keyera and Plains expect Western Reach to consist of two newbuild pipelines, one dedicated to a mixture of propane, butane, and condensate (NGL mix) and the other to segregated condensate service. The 570-km Western Reach system will traverse the Deep basin, including the Montney and Duvernay zones.

Keyera and Plains believe that separate dedicated pipelines for NGL mix and segregated condensate will benefit customers, avoiding the costs associated with pipelines operating a single line in batch mode.

The open season closes May 15.

The Edmonton-Fort Saskatchewan area is home to the majority of Canada’s NGL fractionation for subsequent delivery to end-use customers. Both Keyera and Plains have NGL fractionation, storage, pipeline, and terminal facilities in the area. Keyera’s Fort Saskatchewan fractionation and storage recovers 13,200 b/d C3, 9,600 b/d C4, and 7,200 b/d C5+ (out of a company total of 80,000 b/d) and has 11 on-site storage caverns.

Keyera operates the Fort Saskatchewan Condensate System of interconnected condensate pipeline, terminalling, and storage. The system supplies Imperial Oil’s Kearl oil sands project and Keyera has service agreements in place with Husky Oil for the Sunrise oil sands project scheduled to begin in 2014.

Plains operates a network of pipelines with connectivity to ship NGL to its eastern assets, including Sarnia, Ont., fractionation and storage, Windsor and St. Clair storage, and the Eastern Delivery Systems. Plains seven Canadian fractionation plants total about 232,000 b/d.

Keyera and Plains are both evaluating expansions of their respective NGL fractionation facilities in Fort Saskatchewan. Keyera last year announced plans to build a 30,000 b/d de-ethanizer at Fort Saskatchewan by first-half 2014 (OGJ Online, Sept. 11, 2012).

Contact Christopher E. Smith at

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