Pipeline Profiles: Enbridge Line 9

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Pipeline description

Section updated August 2022

Map Description

Description: Line 9 travels through Ontario municipalities including Sarnia, London, Hamilton, Burlington, Oakville, Mississauga, Toronto, Oshawa, Belleville, Kingston, Brockville, and Cornwall. At the Ontario-Quebec border, it crosses the Ottawa River near Hawkesbury, Ontario. In Quebec, it passes through Mirabel, Blainville, Terrebonne, and Montreal. Along the pipeline, there are several pump stations: Sarnia Terminal, North Westover Station, Hilton Station, Cardinal Station, Terrebonne Station, and Montreal Terminal.

Details

Ownership

  • Pipeline name: Enbridge Line 9
  • CER-regulated company: Enbridge Pipelines Inc.
  • Commenced operations: 1976

Attributes

  • Location: Enbridge Line 9 originates at Sarnia, Ontario, and terminates at Montreal, Quebec
  • LengthFootnote 1: 832 km
  • Commodity: Crude oil (light, medium, and heavy crude)
  • Capacity: Approximately 300 000 barrels per day
  • Major interconnected pipelines: Enbridge Canadian MainlineFootnote 2 (Lines 5, 11 and 78B)
Markets

Enbridge Line 9 transports crude oil from Sarnia, Ontario, to Montreal, Quebec. It serves two refineries in Quebec that manufacture refined petroleum products* (RPPs) for consumers in Quebec, Ontario, the Maritimes, the Northeastern United States (U.S.), and internationally:

Line 9 is also capable of delivering crude oil for feedstock* to Imperial Oil’s Nanticoke Refinery (113 000 b/d capacity) via Line 11 on the Enbridge Canadian Mainline. Nanticoke Refinery also receives supply from Enbridge Mainline’s Line 7, which is connected to Line 11. Nanticoke Refinery supplies RPPs into Ontario, Quebec, and U.S. markets.

Impacts on consumers

Line 9 ships crude oil to refineries in Ontario and Quebec that produce a variety of RPPs. Production varies depending on the season.Footnote 5 Examples of RPPs that are regularly consumed by Canadians include:

  • Jet fuel, which is transported via the Trans-Northern Pipeline or by truck for use in airports including the Toronto Pearson Airport and Montréal-Trudeau International Airport
  • Petrochemical products, for manufacturing plastics such as bottles and polyester clothing
  • Gasoline and diesel fuel, for fueling cars and trucks at gas stations
  • Heating oil, for central heating systems of homes and office buildings
  • Marine diesel fuel and bunker fuel, for vessels such as ships carrying goods in and out of the Port of Montreal
  • Asphalt, for road surfacing, roof sealing, protective coating and other similar products
References
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Pipeline timeline

Section updated August 2022

8 April 1975 – Major facility change

The Government of Canada enters an agreementFootnote 6 with Interprovincial Pipe Line Inc. (IPL), predecessor of Enbridge Inc.,Footnote 7 to support the construction of the Montreal Extension, now known as Line 9Footnote 8

  • Construction on Line 9 began in 1975 to secure crude oil supply for refineries in eastern Canada. At the time, pipeline systems in Canada could not ship crude oil from western Canada directly to these refineries.

4 June 1976

Line 9 opens, carrying crude oil produced in western Canada to refineries in Quebec at a capacity of approximately 315 000 b/d

1 May 1997

IPL files an application (“Line 9 Reversal Project”) to reverse the direction of flow from east to west, at a capacity of 240 000 b/d

9 December 1997

In the Reasons for Decision OH-2-97, the National Energy Board (NEB), precursor to the CER, approves the Line 9 Reversal Project

1999 – Major facility change

Enbridge reverses Line 9 to flow westward

  • In 1999, Enbridge reversed the flow of Line 9 to transport crude oil from Montreal to refineries in Ontario. This crude oil was imported into Montreal via the Montreal Pipeline from Portland, Maine. The oil was brought to North America by marine vessels from areas such as the North Sea, West Africa, and the Middle East. Following the reversal, the capacity of Line 9 was approximately 240 000 b/d.

8 August 2011 – Major facility change

Enbridge files an application (“Line 9 Reversal Phase I Project”) to reverse Line 9A to flow eastward

  • In August 2011, Enbridge filed an application to reverse the 194 km segment of Line 9 between Sarnia, Ontario, and Westover, Ontario (Line 9A). The initial design capacity was 169 000 b/d, expandable to 250 000 b/d. This reversal was in response to a shipper request from Imperial Oil to supply its Nanticoke Refinery with crude oil from western Canadian and U.S. sources.

27 July 2012

In the Letter Decision OH-005-2011, the NEB approves the Line 9 Reversal Phase I Project

29 November 2012 – Major facility change

Enbridge files an application (“Line 9B Reversal and Line 9 Capacity Expansion Project”) to reverse Line 9B to flow eastward and increase the entire Line 9 capacity to 300 000 b/d

  • In November 2012, Enbridge filed an application to reverse the 639 km segment of Line 9 between Westover, Ontario, and Montreal, Quebec (Line 9B). In its application, Enbridge also filed a request to increase the capacity of the entire Line 9 from 240 000 b/d to approximately 300 000 b/d through the introduction of a drag reducing agent, and to revise the Line 9 Rules and Regulations Tariff to allow for the transportation of heavy crude oil.

1 August 2013

The Line 9 Reversal Phase 1 Project is completed and opened

6 March 2014

In the Reasons for Decision OH-002-2013, the NEB approves the Line 9B Reversal and Line 9 Capacity Expansion Project, subject to conditionsFootnote 9

1 December 2015 – Major facility change

The Line 9B Reversal and Line 9 Capacity Expansion Project is operational


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Throughput and capacity

Section updated annually (mid-April)

Line 9 operates at a capacity of 300 000 b/d. A minimum of 8.3 per cent of the capacity, equivalent to 25 000 b/d, is set aside as uncommitted capacity.

Select units:
Key Point Trends
Key Point Description

Note: The physical capacity of a pipeline is based on many factors such as the products being carried, direction of flow, pipeline pumping capacity, and maintenance work or other pressure restrictions. The actual physical capacity of the pipeline may, at times, be higher than the assumed operational capacity stated here.

Dashboard instructions
  • Click on a key point button above the chart & map to view traffic at a different location. The map shows approximate locations on the pipeline where throughputs & capacity are recorded by the pipeline operator.
  • Click and drag your mouse on the area chart to zoom into the desired date range. Click on the Reset Zoom button to reset the full date range.
  • Click on the chart legend items below the chart to remove & add sections of data as required.
  • The key point trends are calculated using quarterly average traffic at the key point. Natural gas throughput trends are displayed year over year (last full quarter of data compared to the same quarter last year). Crude oil and liquids key point trends are displayed quarter over quarter (last full quarter of data compared to the previous quarter).

Note: The five-year average is calculated for key points using the total throughput across all trade types and direction of flows. For bi-directional key points (both export and import) the throughput is displayed for both directions, instead of the five-year average.

Source and description

Data Source: Open Government

Description: The above dashboard displays pipeline throughput and capacity at key point(s) along the system. Where possible, the five-year average and five-year range for throughput is shown with the current year throughput to better highlight the trends. For pipeline key points with a defined location, a map is displayed next to the graph showing the approximate key point location where pipeline throughput and capacity are recorded.

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Apportionment, nomination and verification procedures

Line 9 is not regularly apportioned because there is generally sufficient capacity on the line for shippers. Since Line 9 receives supply from the Enbridge Mainline, Line 9 shippers are subject to the apportionment, nomination, and verification procedures of the Enbridge Mainline. As such, any apportionment on the Canadian Mainline can impact Line 9 shippers. See the CER’s Enbridge Mainline Pipeline Profile for more information on the Enbridge Mainline’s apportionment, nomination and verification procedures.

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Tolls

Section updated August 2022

A toll is the price charged by a pipeline company for transportation and other services. Tolls allow pipeline companies to safely operate and maintain pipelines. Tolls also provide funds for companies to recover capital (the money used to build the pipeline), pay debts, and provide a return to investors.

The interactive graph below shows the local tolls from Sarnia to Montreal and the international joint tolls* for select paths (from receipt points on the Enbridge Mainline to delivery points on Line 9) since mid-2014.

Line 9 International Joint Tolls (IJT) are inclusive of service on the Enbridge Mainline system. Line 9 IJTs apply to crude oil that is transported from Canadian Mainline receipt points in western Canada, across international boundaries near Gretna, Manitoba, and Sarnia, Ontario, to Line 9 delivery points at either Nanticoke, Ontario, or Montreal, Quebec. The Committed IJTs are determined using the transportation charges on the Enbridge Mainline and several additional surcharges. The Uncommitted IJTs are set at a premium such that it does not exceed 122% of the Committed IJT for the same path.

Line 9 local tolls apply to transportation service from Sarnia, Ontario, to Montreal, Quebec.

Open data can be freely used and shared by anyone for any purpose. The data for these graphs are available.

Official CER documents related to the traffic, tolls and tariffs for Enbridge Pipelines Inc. can be found here: [Folder 155829].

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Abandonment funding

Section updated August 2022

The CER requires pipeline companies to set aside funds to safely cease operations of a pipeline at the end of its useful life. In 2016, Enbridge Pipelines Inc. estimated it would cost $1 743 million to do this for the Enbridge Mainline system, including Line 9. These funds will be collected over 40 years and are being set aside in a trust. Although Line 9 does not have an abandonment cost estimate separate from the Mainline, the abandonment trust fund is collected separately (see Table 1). See the CER’s Enbridge Mainline Pipeline Profile for details on Enbridge Mainline’s abandonment trust fund balance.

Table 1: Enbridge Line 9’s abandonment trust fund balance

2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
Trust fund balance ($) 0 3 700 000 7 800 000 12 000 000 18 100 000 23 200 000

Official CER documents related to abandonment funding can be found here, sorted by year and by company: abandonment funding documents [Folder 3300366].

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Financial information

See the CER’s Enbridge Mainline Pipeline Profile for more information on Enbridge Mainline’s financial information, including credit ratings and regulatory audits.

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Safety and environment

See the CER’s Enbridge Mainline Pipeline Profile for more information on Enbridge Mainline’s conditions compliance, reported incidents, operations and maintenance activities, contaminated sites and remediation, and emergency management.

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