June 27, 2013 11:40 ET

Prestigious, Non-Partisan Scientific Organization Finds Diluted Bitumen No Riskier Than Other Crude Oils

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwired - June 27, 2013) - TransCanada Corporation (TSX:TRP) (NYSE:TRP) (TransCanada) welcomed a scientific report published by the National Academy of Science regarding pipeline safety and the characteristics of oil sands derived crudes (diluted bitumen). Formed in 1916, the Academy describes itself as 'having earned a solid reputation as the nation's premier source of independent, expert advice on scientific issues'.

The report was commissioned by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation. The study concluded diluted bitumen (dilbit) does not have unique properties that make it more likely than other crude oils to cause internal damage to pipelines from corrosion nor is dilbit more likely to cause spills when compared to other crude oils.

"The public has been bombarded with misinformation about the oil that will go through Keystone XL, but this latest study by the highly credible National Academy of Science has confirmed that oil is oil and the pipelines we build will safely move different blends - as the industry has been doing for decades," said Vern Meier, vice-president, pipeline safety and compliance, TransCanada.

The National Academy of Science report is the latest in a series of reports investigating the characteristics of oil sands derived crudes and pipeline safety. Studies completed by Batelle Memorial, Penspen Integrity, the University of Calgary, Natural Resources Canada, the Nature Journal and PHMSA have also concluded that diluted bitumen behaves the same way as other crude oil in pipelines and is just as safe to transport as other conventional forms of oil.

Key findings by the National Academy of Science panel include:

  • No evidence of causes of pipeline failure unique to the transportation of diluted bitumen
  • No evidence of chemical or physical properties of diluted bitumen that are outside the range of other crude oils
  • No evidence that any aspects of the transportation of diluted bitumen by transmission pipeline would cause releases more likely than the transportation of other crude oils
  • The dilution process needed to help these heavy oils flow yield a stable and fully mixed product for shipping by pipeline with density and viscosity levels in the range of other crude oils transported by pipeline in the United States
  • No evidence of unique or extreme properties that make diluted bitumen shipments more likely to cause internal corrosion or erosion

As the Energy Information Administration and the International Energy Agency experts have shown, U.S. refineries will continue to import 3.5 to 7.5 million barrels of oil each day through 2035. A safe, secure and reliable supply of oil is needed to heat American homes, power industry and start more than 250 million vehicles every morning. TransCanada's job is to build and operate infrastructure that will continue to get that oil to our customers safely and reliably.

"The public needs to have confidence in what our industry does and the steps that companies like TransCanada take to make sure that the products we transport are handled carefully and safely, and this latest study shows that we are," concluded Meier. "We make significant investments to make sure our energy infrastructure network is operating as safely as possible. In 2012 alone, TransCanada invested more than $1 billion in pipeline integrity and proactive inspection and maintenance programs to protect our pipelines and energy facilities and we plan to spend an additional $1.2 billion this year."

With more than 60 years' experience, TransCanada is a leader in the responsible development and reliable operation of North American energy infrastructure including natural gas and oil pipelines, power generation and gas storage facilities. TransCanada operates a network of natural gas pipelines that extends more than 68,500 kilometres (42,500 miles), tapping into virtually all major gas supply basins in North America. TransCanada is one of the continent's largest providers of gas storage and related services with more than 400 billion cubic feet of storage capacity. A growing independent power producer, TransCanada owns or has interests in over 11,800 megawatts of power generation in Canada and the United States. TransCanada is developing one of North America's largest oil delivery systems. TransCanada's common shares trade on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges under the symbol TRP. For more information visit: or check us out on Twitter @TransCanada or

Forward Looking Information

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