What products do pipelines transport?

Liquids

Liquids include crude oil, diluted bitumen or natural gas liquids (NGLs), like ethane, butane and propane.

Crude oil comes out of the ground in a liquid form, and according to Statistics Canada, provides about 37.5 per cent of Canada’s total energy needs. Crude oil is a naturally-occurring mixture of liquid hydrocarbons, also called petroleum. It is often found along with natural gas, carbon dioxide, saltwater, sulphur compounds and sand. Canada has the world’s third largest oil reserves, after Saudi Arabia and Venezuela.

Dilbit, or diluted bitumen, is oil from the oil sands that is mixed with a thinner liquid (natural gas condensate, naphtha or other light hydrocarbons) to dilute it for easier transport. Once the condensate is added, dilbit is the same consistency as conventional oil.

LNG is a clear, colourless, non-toxic liquid that forms when natural gas is cooled to -162ºC (-260ºF).

Natural gas

Considered the cleanest-burning fossil fuel, natural gas is an abundant resource in Canada. In fact, Canada is the world’s fifth-largest natural gas producer. We have enough natural gas reserves to meet current national energy demand for 300 years.

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