Imperial Oil’s Kearl Project May Start in January, CEO Says

Dec. 10 (Bloomberg) -- Imperial Oil Ltd. said the start of its Kearl heavy oil sands project in Alberta may be delayed until January because of early winter weather.

“It’s fair to say they’ve had a very early winter in the Fort McMurray area,” Chief Executive Officer Bruce March said following a presentation at the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers’ Investor symposium in Toronto. “We’re fighting through that as we speak, but it’s really slowed down a lot of the commissioning, startup activities.”

Imperial spokesman Pius Rolheiser said July 11 in an e-mail the company planned to begin production at the Kearl site at 110,000 barrels a day by the end of this year. Production will be sold as blended bitumen and shipped via Enbridge Inc.’s Woodland pipeline, he said at the time.

The site is about about 44 miles (71 kilometers) north of Fort McMurray, Alberta.

To contact the reporter on this story: Rebecca Penty in Calgary at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at