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Analyst predicts Kinder Morgan will walk away from expansion as deadline looms


Analyst believes Kinder Morgan will bail on the pipeline expansion as BC and Alberta play their political game of tennis

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – With just over a week to go until Kinder Morgan’s deadline for abandoning the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, no other companies have publicly come forward to say they’d be interested in taking over the project.

One analyst, however, isn’t all that surprised.

“I wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole,” says Roger McKnight, petroleum analyst with En-Pro International.

He describes the spat between BC and Alberta holding up the pipeline like a political game of tennis.

“The ball keeps going back and forth and back and forth. Pretty soon Kinder Morgan, I think, is going to get whiplash and just say ‘to heck with this… we’re in the oil business, not the politics business.'”

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He says Kinder Morgan has to feel frustrated.

“I’m not really very optimistic that this thing is going to go through. I can see, [I think] they’ll walk because they can’t put up with this anymore.”

Even though the federal government has promised to backstop the pipeline expansion to guarantee it’s built, no other interested parties have stepped up to the plate should Kinder Morgan abandon the project.

“Nothing’s going to change, it’s just going to be a different victim in this political game of tennis.”

The BC government announced it was suing Alberta after the latter approved a new piece of legislation that could limit how much oil is shipped to British Columbia.

The new bill could also allow Alberta to cut the supply off entirely.

This is just the latest development in the pipeline feud between the two provinces, which began earlier this year when John Horgan’s government announced it would limit bitumen shipments pending a spill response study.

Kinder Morgan wants the project green lit by both provinces and the federal government by no later than May 31st.