TransCanada announced in February it was moving ahead with its so-called Gulf Coast Project to handle growing supplies of U.S. crude oil.
The larger Keystone XL pipeline could move as much as 830,000 barrels of oil per day from tar sands projects in Alberta to southern U.S. refineries. The Canadian government said in 2010 it would eventually result in a higher price for Canadian crude.
"The Canadian plan was to use their market power to raise prices in the United States and get more money from consumers," Philip Verleger, founder of energy consulting firm PK Verleger LLC, told Bloomberg News. This could lead to a 20 cent increase in the price of gasoline in some U.S. markets, he said.
TransCanada, however, told the news service the Gulf Coast Project would result in cheaper gasoline. Ray Perryman, a consultant working for the Canadian pipeline company, said Keystone XL would lower the price of gasoline in the United States by around 4 cents per gallon.
Tensions with Iran are one of the factors behind higher oil prices, which are a main component in prices at the pump.