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Torq Transloading Says East Coast Refiners Take Canadian Oil

Torq Transloading, a Calgary-based company that loads oil onto trains in Alberta and Saskatchewan, says East Coast Canadian and U.S. refiners are investing in infrastructure to receive oil by rail.

“East Coast refiners have made the largest investment in rail cars and rail car offload capacity,” Chief Executive Officer Jarrett Zielinski said in a telephone interview. Torq, which loads 18,000 to 24,000 barrels a day of oil onto trains for shipment to refining centers in the U.S. and Canada, expects the amount to double this year.

About 65 percent of the shipments are undiluted bitumen, Zielinski said. “The balance would be some light sweet.”

Torq has loading terminals in Dollard, Unity and Lloydminster, Saskatchewan, and in Tilley, Alberta. Three more will be added within 60 days, including one in Whitecourt, Alberta, and one in the Tribune, Saskatchewan-area, according to Zielinski. He declined to disclose the location of the third.

Crude is sent to refiners in Texas City, Texas, on the U.S. Gulf Coast, to the U.S. Northeast and to Saint John, New Brunswick, he said. Irving Oil Corp. operates a 298,000-barrel-a-day refinery in Saint John.

NuStar Energy LP may more than triple rail shipments of oil to its 74,000-barrel-a-day Paulsboro asphalt refinery in New Jersey within a year, Chief Executive Officer Curtis Anastasio said in an interview May 2. The amount may rise to 30,000 barrels a day from 7,500 now, he said.

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