Enbridge Inc. and Enterprise Products Partners announced a decision to reverse the flow of the Seaway oil pipeline so it carries oil from Cushing to refineries along the southern coast.
Russ Girling, the top executive at pipeline company TransCanada, told Bloomberg News that wasn't seen as a blow to his company's plans to build the $7 billion Keystone XL pipeline, however.
"All that oil's got to get to a market, and the best market's the Gulf Coast," he said. "We're going to need Seaway, we're going to need our pipe, we're probably going to need some more pipe down the road."
Enbridge had said it could build two new pipelines in the United States tied to Cushing. Girling said his company was considering whether to build at least part of Keystone in order to get oil out of the oversupplied Oklahoma storage hub.
He'd need permission to do so from the State Department, which this month said it delayed its decision on Keystone XL for at least another year.
Nebraska lawmakers complained part of the planned pipeline would pass over a groundwater aquifer that supplies drinking water to much of the region. The State Department, which needs to approve Keystone XL because it would cross the U.S.-Canadian border, said it was reviewing other route options in Nebraska.