CALGARY, Alberta Nov 15 Enbridge Inc
said on Thursday it had rationed more oil pipeline capacity on
its huge Canada-to-United States system, a rare mid-month move
that sent prices for Canadian heavy crude tumbling.
Enbridge said shipper nominations to transport volumes on
two pipelines that together can carry nearly 60 percent of
Canada's oil exports to the United States will be cut back by 18
percent for the balance of November due to unplanned outages and
The company had already rationed space on a number of U.S.
Midwest pipelines at the start of the month, after shipper
nominations exceeded available capacity, a problem that has
plagued producers and refiners as Canadian oil sands and North
Dakota unconventional crude output has surged.
The system had already been clogged after TransCanada Corp
ran its Keystone pipeline to the U.S. Midwest and
Midcontinent area from Alberta at reduced rates in recent days
due to power outages in Manitoba.
Enbridge said the new apportionment affects Line 4, which
moves up to 796,000 barrels a day to Superior, Wisconsin, from
Edmonton, Alberta, and Line 67, which carries 450,000 bpd to
Superior from Hardisty, Alberta.
Western Canada Select, a widely quoted heavy crude grade,
sank as much as $5 a barrel on Thursday as word of the
apportionment spread through the cash market. WCS for December
delivery last sold for $32.50 a barrel under benchmark West
Texas Intermediate, a $2.50 deeper discount than on Wednesday,
according to Shorcan Energy Brokers.