Pipelines and terminals are increasingly important to business success as companies continue to penetrate frontier regions onshore and also move into deeper and deeper waters offshore. The substantial increase in oil sands projects in Northern Alberta, Canada, has increased the need for distribution facilities from that region to terminals and refineries in North America. In addition, expected increased demand for natural gas in Asia will require additional distribution infrastructure, including pipelines, LNG terminals, and other associated facilities. As a result of a lack of transportation infrastructure in many areas, pipelines, terminals, and associated facilities can be a significant capital investment.
The transportation of raw and refined products from production facilities—both onshore and offshore—to downstream processing plants and then to market for final distribution is a critical aspect of the exploration, refining, and chemicals industries. The projects in the distribution sector range from small lateral pipelines to intercontinental trunk lines and deepwater transportation systems, from the addition of a product storage tank to full large-scale terminals, and from service station modifications to greenfield facilities. Regardless of the size of the asset, transportation and marketing are the key links in getting the product to the end user.
All of IPA's products and services are tailored for specific use for the pipeline, terminal, and service station industries. Through statistical modeling, we have identified indicators of success and failure in distribution project performance. IPA's database of pipeline, terminal, and service station projects is constantly expanding. Today, this database contains more than 1,700 projects, representing all aspects of moving a product from an oil or gas field to market.
Not only is there diversity in the types of distribution projects represented, but the database also includes a wide variety of project sizes, complexities, and locations. The extensive range of project characteristics found in this database allows IPA to fully analyze the drivers of successful performance in the installation of distribution and service station assets.