Path Home Shows 2010 Show Archive December 2010 Show 1049 Jim Prescott - Keystone Pipeline

Jim Prescott - Keystone Pipeline

We visit with Jim Prescott, who's with TransCanada, the builder of the Keystone Pipeline.
Jim Prescott - Keystone Pipeline

Rob McClendon and Jim Prescott

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TransCanada--Keystone Pipeline Project

Show Dates

Show 1049: Interview with Jim Prescott - Keystone Pipeline

Air date: December 5, 2010



Rob McClendon:  Earlier I was able to sit down in studio with Jim Prescott who’s with TransCanada, the builder of the Keystone Pipeline.  So, Jim, give us some idea of just how much of a game changer the TransCanada Keystone Pipeline could actually be.

Jim Prescott:  Well it’s a huge economic impact from the construction of it.  It also has an enormous energy security impact as well.  From an economic standpoint, construction of Keystone Pipeline, which will take four or five years, will add about 20 billion dollars to the US economy.  It will create 20,000 construction jobs, and on a local and county and state basis, it will add millions if not billions of dollars to local government coffers and budgets.  In Oklahoma alone, just construction of the pipeline will add about 21 million dollars to the state government tax roles.  During construction in Oklahoma, we’ll add about four million dollars to county budgets.

Rob:  What happens from here?

Prescott:  Well, what happens from here is on that portion of the pipeline project, we will test and commission it, make sure everything’s working the way it should.  Once that completion, once that portion of the project is done, we’ll begin filling the line with oil, and we anticipate that we’ll begin operations and delivering oil to Cushing in early 2011.  From there, we’re looking for regulatory approval to expand the pipeline project from Cushing south through Oklahoma, across the Red River, or under the Red River actually, into Texas and down to the refinery markets on the Texas/Gulf coast.

Rob:  Give us some idea about how important the oil sands that where most of this oil should be coming from, how important they are to our energy future.

Prescott:  Well, not only do we get more oil from Canada than any other country in the world, but Canada has the second largest deposits of oil in the world.  Only Saudi Arabia has more oil than Canada.  So it’s important to the US energy policy from that standpoint.  We’d rather do business I think it’s fair to say with Canada than say Venezuela.   And given the supply that Canada has, they’ve got about 100 years supply of oil up there, and when you factor in that other countries such as Mexico and Venezuela, either, or their production levels are dropping rapidly, it makes, from an energy security standpoint, it makes sense to do business with Canada.  The oil sands is, the production of oil sands is increasing.  And, that oil will go someplace.  This project is a significant project.  Keystone will deliver more than a million barrels a day to US markets as opposed to sending it elsewhere in the world whether it’s China or India.  So the oil sands is close.  It’s an efficient way to deliver oil to meet US demand, and when you factor in that from an environmental standpoint or from an economic standpoint or energy security standpoint, it all makes sense to move forward with this project and finish the job.

Rob:  So it sounds as if this is a good time to be a welder working in Oklahoma.

Prescott:  It has been a very good time to be a welder, not only in Oklahoma, but a lot of states. This is probably one of the biggest projects in the business right now.  It’s certainly the biggest oil pipeline project since the Alaska pipeline a generation ago.  So it is a huge undertaking that involves tens of thousands of people and several years.  It’s a 12 billion dollar project over four thousand miles, so it’s a good time to be in the oil pipeline business.

Rob:  Alright, Jim, appreciate you coming here.

Prescott:  Thank you very much.