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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for August delivery added 59 cents to $56.22 on the New York Merc, while Brent for September added 79 cents to $63.26 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $14.90 to WTI, up from a discount of $15.10. Natural gas for August added six cents to $2.31. The TSX energy index added a fraction to close at 137.44.
The oil patch enjoyed a welcome bit of good news, as the National Energy Board (NEB) paved the way for construction to resume on parts of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. Work had been halted last August after the Federal Court of Appeal overturned the project's permits. Following a "reconsideration" period by the NEB and then the reapproval of Trans Mountain by Ottawa last month, the NEB has now officially reinstated the permits, announcing late on Friday that "decisions and orders issued prior to the Federal Court of Appeal decision will remain valid." This means that 73 per cent of the detailed pipeline route has been approved and 64 of 98 preconstruction conditions have been fully satisfied. Included in the reinstated permits are clearances allowing for construction work on the Westridge marine terminal, various temporary infrastructure sites and "portions of the pipeline route."
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