Update from Spectra Energy on natural gas pipeline

In February, mayor and council were visited by Spectra Energy for an update on a natural gas pipeline.

In February, mayor and council were visited by Spectra Energy for an update on a natural gas pipeline proposed to cross this part of the province.

It had been a year since the company had come to see mayor and council and the project has passed a couple of hurdles since their last visit.

Franca Petrucci and Maggie Marsland spoke to council to present the update on where Spectra’s proposed pipeline project is at.

The project has been named the Westcoast Connetor Gas Transmission Project and the company intends to submit their project application to the BC Environmental Assessment Office in March of this year.

The natural gas pipeline would run 850 km from northeastern B.C. to Ridley Island, off of Prince Rupert.

So far, the proposed route keeps the pipeline fairly far north from Fort St. James, said Petrucci, but a distance was not given. The map showed the pipeline heading west near Mackenzie.

The project will require the company to consult with 22 First Nations groups said Petrucci.

Construction, should the project be approved, would begin sometime mid-decade with operation of the pipeline expected to start late-decade.

Spectra is proposing two 48-inch diameter natural gas pipelines through the proposed right of way and said most of the right of way would be buried below-ground.

The company said they only have one partner confirmed to provide one of the pipelines, but they are applying for two.

The goal of two pipelines through the same right of way is to reduce the overall impact of pipeline corridors through the province and Petrucci said the company is hoping to work with companies to log timber along the route where viable to do so.

Petrucci said they are continuing to refine the route, with two options being looked at for the marine portion.

The proposed project would have a capacity to move up to 8.4 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day, requiring five compression stations along the route.