Suncor employees are pleased with the National Energy Board’s final approval for Enbridge to start delivering oil from Western Canada through its Line 9B pipeline to Montreal. Line 9b will allow supply options, as well as access to inland crudes, providing operational flexibility for our refinery in Montreal.
Access to more affordable inland crudes has been limited to us by train and, on occasion, by ship since 2014, while more expensive foreign crudes have been supplied through the Portland Montreal Pipeline. This was causing a negative impact on the competiveness of our refinery because other North American refineries had the ability to process cheaper Western crudes.
“With access to the St. Lawrence Seaway we have what is known as a ‘tidewater location.’ Competition in this particular market is fierce. Finished products such as gasoline and diesel can be imported into Quebec. Seeing as we are currently paying more for our crude but are selling our products at the same price as our competitors, we are at a disadvantage, but Line 9B will change this and improve our profitability,” said Jean Côté, vice-president of the Montreal refinery.
Once Line 9B is operational, this inland crude will make up a large part of our supply.
With over 400 permanent employees and 300 contractual workers, this is welcome news as it will help our refinery be more secure and competitive. We will continue to provide refined petroleum products for consumers and businesses in Quebec and Ontario, as well as deliver by-products like xylene, which is essential to the polyester chain, a key component of the petrochemical industry in the East Montreal area.
We appreciate that Enbridge is strongly committed to the safety and integrity of its pipeline operations, which aligns with our values.