NEW YORK IHS
Global Insight Inc. has sided with TransCanada Corp. and the
U.S. State Department that approval of the Keystone XL pipeline
will not significantly increase carbon emissions as it is
unlikely to affect heavy crude oil production or use.
"In the absence of the
pipeline, alternate transportation routes would result in
(Alberta) oil sands production growth being more or less
unchanged," the Lexington, Mass.-based research firm said,
adding that "any absence of oil sands on the U.S. Gulf Coast
would most likely be replaced by imports of heavy crude oil
from Venezuela, which has the same carbon footprint as oil
ISH expects production
from the oil sands to increase to 4.3 million barrels per day
by 2030 from about 1.9 million barrels per day in 2013
regardless of whether the pipeline is approved, since 80
percent of the pipeline capacity planned for the region runs
solely in Canada and wont need U.S. consent.
Also, investment in
new rail capacity in the absence of pipeline builds can bring
the cost of shipping crude by rail to within $6 per barrel of
pipeline transport, making it a viable alternative, it said.
"This would place rail well within the break-even range for
most oil sands production," IHS said.
President Obama said
recently that the pipelines impact on U.S. carbon
emissions will be key to its approval (
amm.com, June 26).
have argued that the pipeline will lead to a significant rise
in greenhouse gas emissions (
amm.com, July 25).