This will allow us to maintain our previously stated schedule of beginning construction on the pipeline this summer and an in-service date of mid- to late-2013. At a cost of $2.3 billion, this project will employ approximately 4,000 American workers during the construction project and many more jobs that are created at U.S. companies manufacturing all the materials needed to build such a large piece of energy infrastructure. Included in the cost of $2.3 billion is the U.S. $300 million, 76-kilometer Houston Lateral pipeline that will transport oil from Cushing, Oklahoma to Houston refineries as well.
U.S. crude oil production has been growing significantly in states such as Oklahoma, Texas, North Dakota and Montana. And producers do not have access to enough pipeline capacity today to move that production to the large refining market on the U.S. Gulf Coast. The Gulf Coast project will address that constraint and at the same time, allow Gulf Coast refiners access to lower-cost domestic production and avoid paying premium to foreign oil producers.