January 21, 2015 / 11:40 PM / in 3 years

UPDATE 1-Suncor expects Enbridge Line 9B to start up towards end of Q2 2015

(Adds details on Line 9B)

By Nia Williams

Jan 21 (Reuters) - Suncor Energy expects Enbridge Inc’s reversed Line 9B crude pipeline to start up towards the end of the second quarter of 2015, the company’s chief financial officer Alister Cowan said on Wednesday.

Suncor is a committed shipper on the pipeline, which will take crude from Ontario, to Montreal, Quebec.

The Line 9B reversal is part of a project to expand Line 9’s capacity to 300,000 barrels per day. It was originally scheduled to start up late last year but ran into delays after Canada’s National Energy Board requested data on valve placements.

“It looks like it’s probably going to happen in the first half of the year, which means we should be up and operating with product flowing towards the end of Q2,” said Cowan, speaking at a conference in Whistler, British Columbia.

Enbridge spokesman Graham White said there was no new information on Line 9B and the company is awaiting the NEB’s decision.

Regulators said in an Oct. 6 letter that Enbridge had not met a condition of the Line 9 reversal, mandating that shut-off valves be installed on either side of major water crossings.

In the letter to Enbridge, the NEB said the company “has not provided adequate information regarding the location and spacing of the Line 9 valves.”

Calgary-based Enbridge, Canada’s largest pipeline company, responded with a letter in late October providing additional information on valve placements.

Suncor, Canada’s largest oil and gas producer, has 100,000 bpd of committed capacity Line 9B to help supply its 137,000 bpd Montreal refinery.

Cowan said Line 9B will provide cheaper inland crude to the refinery, saving $2-$3 a barrel on feedstock costs. The Montreal refinery previously relied on more expensive Atlantic basin crude linked to international Brent prices. (Editing by Chris Reese and Diane Craft)

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