Oleoducto Nor Peruano Oil Pipeline (Peru)

From Global Energy Monitor
This article is part of the Global Fossil Infrastructure Tracker, a project of Global Energy Monitor.

Oleoducto Nor Peruano Oil Pipeline (Peru) (Northern Peruvian Pipeline) is an oil pipeline in Latin America.[1]


The pipeline originates at the San José de Saramuro and Andoas gathering stations (both in Loreto department, Peru), and terminates at the Bayóvar terminal on Peru's Pacific Coast (Piura department).[2] It passes through the departments of Loreto, Amazonas, Cajamarca, Lambayeque and Piura.[3]

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Project Details

  • Operator: Petroperú[1]
  • Current capacity:
    • Ramal Norte: 105,000 bpd (barrels per day)
    • Section 1: 70,000 bpd
    • Section 2: 200,000 bpd[4]
  • Length: 1106 km[5][6]
    • Ramal Norte: 252 km
    • Section 1: 306 km
    • Section 2: 548 km[4]
  • Diameter:
    • Ramal Norte: 16 inches
    • Section 1: 24 inches
    • Section 2: 36 inches[4]
  • Status: Operating
  • Start Year: 1977[3]


The Oleoducto Nor Peruano is Peru's longest pipeline.[5] It began operating on May 24, 1977.[3]

The pipeline is divided into three sections:

  • The easternmost section, known as Section 1, starts at Station 1 in San José de Saramuro and has a diameter of 24 inches and a length of 306 km.
  • The northernmost section, known as Ramal Norte, starts at the Andoas station and has a diameter of 16 inches and a length of 252 km.
  • These first two sections of pipeline come together at Station 5 in Borja (Loreto department), where they feed into a 36-inch pipeline known as Section 2 that runs 548 kilometers west to the Bayóvar terminal on Peru's Pacific Coast.[2][6]

The pipeline transported 150,000 barrels per day at its peak, but had only been transporting 15,000 barrels per day before a 2016 spill led to the pipeline being shut down for more than a year.[7] Transport of oil through the pipeline suffered new disruptions during the first half of 2020 due to falling oil prices, but a June 2020 agreement between pipeline operator Petroperú and the PetroTal oil company called for resumption of production at the Bretaña oil field in Lot 95, with anticipated volumes of 10,000 bpd for the remainder of 2020 and 20,000 bpd in 2021.[8]

Environmental and social impacts

The pipeline has a substantial history of spills, with at least 23 documented spills and leaks occurring between 2011 and 2017[9] and at least 20 spills between 2016 and 2019.[10]

In August 2016, Peru's government ordered the closure of the pipeline following the pipeline's third spill in a period of five months.[9] It reopened in September 2017.[7] The three 2016 spills were:

  • On 25 January 2016, a spill occurred in the Bagua province of the Amazonas eight miles from a creek that feeds the Morona River, a significant tributary of the Amazon River.[11]
  • On 3 February 2016, a second spill occurred in the Datem del Marañon province in the neighboring Loreto state.[11] Along with the January spill, approximately 3,000 barrels were estimated to have been released.[9]
  • On 24 June 2016, a third spill of 600 barrels occurred in the Maynas Province of Loreto state.[9] Petro peru was fined $3.5 million and Petroperu president German Velasquez was fired.[9]

Another significant spill took place on June 18, 2019, contaminating the drinking water of 1230 indigenous families.[12]

The spills have been contentious for a number of reasons, including their impacts on local villages that rely on the river for drinking water and other essential uses. Petroperú was also criticized following the January and February 2016 spills following the release of photographs depicting children working to clean up the spills, with Petroperu paying $2 per bucket of oil collected.[11]


In February 2019, members of four indigenous Quechua communities near the pipeline (Andoas, Nuevo Andoas, Porvenir and Jardines) took over the Andoas airfield to protest Petroperú and Frontera Energy's failure to supply electricity and water to local residents as promised.[13]

Frustration with Petroperú and its pollution of local rivers provoked further protests and strikes following the June 18, 2019 oil spill. Over the following month, 54 Amazonian indigenous federations joined the protests, eventually taking over one of Petroperú's local headquarters by force on July 6. Indigenous leaders agreed to suspend their protests in mid-July after representatives of the Peruvian government, including Minister of Energy and Mines Francisco Ísmodes, met with them and promised to investigate the ongoing oil spills.[12]

In July 2019, the Peruvian environmental agency OEFA (Organismo de Evaluación y Fiscalización Ambiental) fined Petroperú US$25 million for failure to maintain the pipeline and for damages caused to indigenous communities, flora and fauna in the pipeline's path.[10]

In August 2020, indigenous groups staged new protests at a pumping station along the Nor Peruano pipeline and at Lot 95, an oil field administered by the Canadian company PetroTal, demanding that the government comply with its promises to provide electricity, drinking water, and a sewage treatment plant. Three indigenous protestors were killed in the ensuing confrontation with police, which also resulted in injuries to 11 protestors and six police officers.[14]

Articles and resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 Oleoducto Nor Peruano Oil Pipeline (Peru), A Barrel Full, accessed September 2017
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 "Oleoducto Norperuano cumplió 42 años de funcionamiento". Petroperú. May 27, 2019.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 "Oleoducto Nor Peruano" (PDF). Ministerio de Energía y Minas. Retrieved August 19, 2020.
  5. 5.0 5.1 "Oleoducto Norperuano". Wikipedia. Retrieved 2020-07-01.
  6. 6.0 6.1 "¿Dónde está el Oleoducto Nor Peruano y cuánto petróleo transporta?". RPP Noticias. October 25, 2016.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Petroperu resumes full operation at main crude line, Kallanish Energy, 28 Sep. 2017
  8. "PetroTal coordina reapertura del Oleoducto Norperuano para transportar producción del Lote 95". La República. June 14, 2020.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 [Peru pipeline closed for six more months following third oil spill,] Peru Reports, 1 Aug. 2016
  10. 10.0 10.1 "Derrames del oleoducto de Petroperú en la Amazonia, Perú | EJAtlas". Environmental Justice Atlas. October 14, 2019.
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Oil spills contaminate major river in Peru’s Amazon, Peru Reports, 13 Feb. 2016
  12. 12.0 12.1 "Oleoducto Norperuano: Indígenas levantan protestas en zona declarada en emergencia por derrame de petróleo". Gestión. July 19, 2019.
  13. "Loreto: comunidades nativas tomaron aeródromo de Andoas para reclamar agua y energía". SPDA Actualidad Ambiental. February 8, 2019.
  14. "Perú: 3 muertos en protesta contra petrolera en la Amazonía". Últimas Noticias / 20 Minutos. August 9, 2020.

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