Global Oil & Gas Pipeline Projects in 2021 & Beyond

Global Oil & Gas Pipeline Projects in 2021 & Beyond

Key Points

tens of thousands of kilometres of new oil and gas pipelines are proposed or under construction around the world

• planned oil and gas pipeline construction decreased by 17 per cent due to COVID-19, projects that were almost entirely located in Western democratic countries

• Canada is a global leader in ESG performance and should be a choice supplier of oil and natural gas for as long as the world needs them

Global Oil and Gas Pipeline Projects in 2021 and Beyond

It’s 2021, and as usual, new oil and gas pipelines are being constructed across the globe.

With a projected 50 per cent increase in global energy demand through to 2050, the world will need all forms of energy – including oil and gas – for many years to come, and the continued construction of major oil and gas transmission pipelines is indicative of that reality.

A recent infographic by Energy Minute sheds light on just how many major oil and gas pipelines are under construction in various regions of the world.

Here’s a summary of facts regarding global pipeline expansion in 2021 and beyond. Also see:

Top 20 Countries by Pipeline Length

top 20 countries by pipeline length - energy minute

Courtesy of Energy Minute

Which nations are home to the largest lengths of oil and gas pipelines? Accounting for nearly two-thirds of the world’s total, the United States is home to the largest length of crude oil and natural gas pipelines by far. Russia ranks a distant second with just under 260,000 kilometres (km), and Canada third with about 100,000 km of pipelines. Over 330,000 km of oil and gas pipelines are also found in other countries not listed by the infographic.

Global rankings for pipeline length:

  1. United States – 2,225,032 km
  2. Russia – 259,913 km
  3. Canada – 100,000 km
  4. China – 86,921 km
  5. Ukraine – 45,957 km
  6. Argentina – 39,850 km
  7. United Kingdom – 39,778 km
  8. Iran – 38,906 km
  9. Mexico – 37,008 km
  10. India – 35,676 km
  11. Australia – 34,612 km
  12. Germany – 34,335 km
  13. Algeria – 29,642 km
  14. Brazil – 27,568 km
  15. Kazakhstan – 26,963 km
  16. France – 23,345 km
  17. Italy – 23,190 km
  18. Indonesia – 21,704 km
  19. Hungary – 20,877 km
  20. Poland – 16,349 km
  21. Other – 333,158 km

Global Pipeline Project Status 2020

worldwide pipeline project status 2020 - energy minute

Courtesy of Energy Minute

How many new major oil and gas pipeline projects are underway around the world? According to Energy Minute, there are 105 projects under construction and more than 270 currently proposed for development.

When including all pipeline categories – retired, shelved, under construction, cancelled, proposed, or operating – that figure skyrockets to more than 2,400 pipelines worldwide regardless of increasing costs, market volatility, and environmental concerns associated with such projects.

Crude Oil Pipeline Projects

  • A total of 641 crude oil pipelines exist around the world:
    • 491 operating
    • 53 proposed
    • 54 cancelled
    • 18 under construction
    • 17 shelved
    • 8 retired

Natural Gas Pipeline Projects

  • A total of 1,773 natural gas pipelines exist globally:
    • 1,308 operating
    • 219 proposed
    • 110 cancelled
    • 87 under construction
    • 40 shelved
    • 9 retired

Future Pipeline Projects Forecast

top 11 countries operating and planned oil and gas pipelines - energy minute

Courtesy of Energy Minute

Which countries will you find the largest amount of new oil and gas pipeline projects? The United States, once again, leads the world with 25 crude oil and 52 natural gas projects proposed or under construction.

Globally, operators plan to develop 14,235 miles of pipeline by the end of 2021, with natural gas projects accounting for 93 per cent of that total.

The Asia-Pacific region accounts for more than 46 per cent of forecasted construction of major oil and gas transmission pipeline projects. Due to the global pandemic, planned construction of projects worldwide dropped by 17 per cent in 2021 – almost all of those being in the U.S. and other Western democratic countries.

Despite the effects of COVID-19 on global energy markets, historical trends suggest that demand for oil and gas will eventually return back to pre-pandemic highs, as it has after every recession in the past.

The world will need oil and gas for decades to come, and the reality is that pipelines are the safest way of transporting these commodities.

Pipelines in Canada vs. the World

forecast global oil and gas pipeline construction 2020-2021 - energy minute

Courtesy of Energy Minute

More new oil and gas pipeline projects are forecast to be built in most other parts of the world than in Canada except for Latin America and Europe by the end of 2021. The Asia-Pacific region – home to many emerging markets and developing economies – is expected to account for 50 per cent of all future oil and gas pipeline construction, up from 40 per cent in 2020.

Future projections for 2021 and beyond:

Asia-Pacific – 19,122 km

  • 1,096 km of oil pipelines
  • 16,050 km of natural gas pipelines
  • 1,976 km of product pipelines

United States – 8,649 km

  • 2,699 km of oil pipelines
  • 5,200 km of natural gas pipelines
  • 750 km of product pipelines

Middle East – 3,812 km

  • 1,179 km of oil pipelines
  • 2,633 of natural gas pipelines

Africa – 3,731 km

  • 2,080 km of oil pipelines
  • 1,651 km of gas pipelines

Canada – 2,375 km

  • 912 km of oil pipelines
  • 1,124 km of natural gas pipelines
  • 339 km of product pipelines

Latin America – 1,806 km

  • 1,806 km of natural gas pipelines

Europe – 1,669 km

  • 1,669 km of natural gas pipelines

Canada Needs to Compete

IEA World Energy Outlook 2020 - Developing Economies Global Demand Through to 2040

With global demand for oil and gas projected to rise through to 2030 and beyond, it only makes sense that this supply comes from democratic producers like Canada.

Of the world’s top oil and gas exporters, Canada is a leader in many social and regulatory indices and is continually creating new and innovative ways of conducting business.

As long as the world needs oil and gas, it should come from places like Canada, supporting our families and governments.

Who would you choose to supply the world with its future oil and gas supply? We say Canada, and hope you would too!

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