As politicians gloat about climate ‘leadership,’ Saudi Arabia’s oil is dumped in Canada – by Claudia Cattaneo (Financial Post – February 10, 2016)

“Where is the political outrage over oil imports from rogue nations with
inferior environmental records and deplorable behaviours toward women,
dissidents and minorities? Where are the beefed up regulatory reviews
of Saudi Arabia’s climate change impacts, or their dumping practices?”

As federal and provincial politicians pat themselves on the back for their climate change ‘leadership,’ and pipeline opponents gloat about stalling construction of new Canadian pipelines, tanker-loads of foreign oil are delivered regularly to Eastern Canadian refineries, including increasing volumes from Saudi Arabia.

That’s right. Saudia Arabia, the oil-rich kingdom that is waging a brutal price war to shore up its market share and devastating Canada’s oil and gas sector in the process, dumped an average of 84,017 barrels a day of its cheap oil in New Brunswick’s Irving Oil Ltd. refinery in 2015, according to data compiled by the National Energy Board (NEB). That’s up from 63,046 b/d on average in 2012.

Overall, refiners in Quebec, Ontario, Newfoundland and New Brunswick imported about 650,000 barrels a day from foreign producers in 2015. In addition to Saudi Arabia, the oil came from the United States, Algeria, Angola, Nigeria, because there is insufficient pipeline capacity to import it from Western Canada, which produces far more oil than it needs.

The reversal of Enbridge Inc.’s Line 9, which is finally up and running after much opposition and moves up to 240,000 b/d of Western Canadian oil to Montreal, means oil imports will drop this year — but not likely from Saudi Arabia.

The Irving refinery, Canada’s largest, says on its website it has a long-term supplier partnership with the Saudis. The company is a big supporter of TransCanada Corp.’s proposed Energy East pipeline from Alberta to New Brunswick, but until it’s done, it has a 350,000 b/d refinery to keep in business. Irving Oil did not respond to a request for comment.

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