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Could Enbridge’s Line 3 Replacement Be Operational This Year?

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The issue

On February 12, Minnesota governor Tim Walz announced that he plans to continue appealing the PUC’s (Public Utilities Commission) approval of Enbridge’s (ENB) Line 3 replacement project, which could delay the project. The PUC approved the project last June. The project, valued at 9 billion Canadian dollars, involves replacing all remaining segments (~1,000 miles) of Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline, which runs between Hardisty, Alberta, and Superior, Wisconsin.

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Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline started operations in 1968. The pipeline has been operating at nearly half of its capacity since 2010, when Enbridge reduced the pipeline’s pressure to ensure its safe operation. The replaced segment is set to restore the pipeline’s original capacity and the transportation of heavy oil through the pipeline.

The project’s progress

In Canada, the laying of the pipeline is complete, and other activities are on schedule to be completed by mid-2019. On the US side, the pipeline replacement work in Wisconsin is finished and the pipeline was placed into service last year.

In Minnesota, Enbridge has submitted permit applications to various departments and agencies, including the US Army Corps of Engineers, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Enbridge expects the project to become operational before the end of this year.

Enbridge stock has risen 19% this year and 10% in the last year. The stock is trading 8% above its 50-day moving average and 10% above its 200-day moving average.

Cheniere Energy (LNG) is scheduled to report its results on February 26. For an earnings preview, read What to Expect from Cheniere Energy’s Q4 Earnings.

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