Natural Resources Minister Seamus O'Regan responds to a question during Question Period in the House of Commons Tuesday February 4, 2020 in Ottawa. The Alberta government is welcoming news that Ottawa has approved an expansion of the Nova Gas Transmission Ltd. gathering system in Alberta — while condemning federal delays that it says cost this summer's construction season. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

Alberta welcomes federal OK of NGTL gas pipeline expansion while criticizing delay

Alberta welcomes federal OK of NGTL gas pipeline expansion while criticizing delay

CALGARY — The Alberta government says it welcomes the news that Ottawa has approved an expansion of the Nova Gas Transmission Ltd. gathering system in Alberta — while condemning federal delays that it says cost this summer’s construction season.

“Despite months of delay, we are pleased the federal government has approved this key infrastructure project, which will create significant economic benefits and good jobs for Albertans, at a time they are needed the most,” said Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage on Tuesday.

“The project was expected to be under construction this summer but, as a result of delays by Ottawa, the bulk of construction is not expected to get underway until 2021.”

The $2.3-billion NGTL expansion was approved by the government as part of a “commitment to moving forward with good projects,” said federal Natural Resources Minister Seamus O’Regan in a news release late Monday.

The federal government strengthened five conditions proposed by the Canada Energy Regulator and added one new condition, he added, with the changes aimed at better addressing Indigenous rights and mitigating construction impacts on caribou habitat.

The pipeline division owned by Calgary-based TC Energy Corp. will now be required to restore 3,840 hectares of caribou habitat, an area 30 times the size of the habitat impacted by the project, he said, and an Indigenous working group is to be formed to assist with the restoration and monitoring plan.

TC Energy said in a statement it is awaiting the details of the federal conditions but expects the approval will allow it to go ahead with construction, starting with compressor station field work next month and pipeline construction activities in January.

“This capacity is vital to our customers, our industry and to the people who rely on the energy we deliver,” said Tracy Robinson, TC’s president of Canadian Natural Gas Pipelines and Coastal GasLink.

“We estimate this project will create up to 5,500 well-paying construction jobs for both Indigenous and non-Indigenous workers and will bring a much-needed economic boost to communities across Canada, especially in Alberta.”

The company says the new pipeline capacity will be placed in service through 2021 and 2022, adding the project is a “critical component” of the current $9.9-billion NGTL infrastructure program which will add 3.5 billion cubic feet per day of capacity between 2020 and 2024.

The federal approval allows the addition of 344 kilometres of new pipeline to the existing system from west of Red Deer in central Alberta to near Grande Prairie in the northwestern part of the province.

The NGTL system currently includes 25,000 kilometres of pipeline in Alberta and northeastern British Columbia, connected to other systems to deliver gas across North America.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 20, 2020.

Companies in this story: (TSX:TRP)

Dan Healing, The Canadian Press

Pipeline

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau leaves the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Conservatives push for parliamentary committee study into failed vaccine deal

OTTAWA — The federal Conservatives are calling for a parliamentary committee to… Continue reading

(Red Deer Advocate file photo).
Red Deer County seeks public feedback on draft budget

Minimal impact on ratepayers was the goal

(Advocate file photo).
RDC’s The Nutcracker is being videotaped for online viewing

COVID-19 presents challenges for live performance

Trail RCMP report three impaired driving investigations. Photo: Black Press file
New drunk driving rules allow police to impose tougher penalties immediately

New impaired driving regulations started on Tuesday

(Lacombe Express file photo)
Lacombe County holds the line on taxes

Staff hiring freeze planned for 2021 to make up for lost oil and gas revenue

Idyllic winter scenes are part of the atmosphere of the holiday season, and are depicted in many seasonal movies. How much do you know about holiday movies? Put your knowledge to the test. (Pixabay.com)
QUIZ: Test your knowledge of holiday movies and television specials

The festive season is a time for relaxing and enjoying some seasonal favourites

Toronto police respond to an incident at St. Michael’s College School, in Toronto, Nov. 19, 2018. The trial of a teen accused of sexually assaulting two students at a prestigious Toronto high school is set to resume today. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tijana Martin
Trial resumes for teen accused in St. Michael’s College School sex assault case

Defence lawyers for a teen accused of sexually assaulting two students at… Continue reading

Minister of Health Patty Hajdu responds to a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. The Trump administration is keeping silent about Canada blocking its plan to import prescription drugs from north of the border. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trump admin silent after Hajdu pushes back on U.S. plan to raid Canada’s drug cabinet

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Trump administration is keeping silent about Canada blocking… Continue reading

Quebec City mayor Regis Labeaume, right, speaks at the inauguration of a memorial to the 2017 mosque shooting, Tuesday, December 1, 2020 in Quebec City. From the left, Luce Pelletier, artist who designed the memorial, MP Joel Lightbound, Boufeldja Benabdallah, and MNA Joelle Boutin.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot
Quebec City’s memorial to 2017 mosque shooting victims symbolizes defeat of hatred

Quebec City has inaugurated a memorial to the victims of the 2017… Continue reading

A scene from last year’s Light the Night fundraiser at the Stettler Town and Country Museum. This year’s rendition is on a drive-through basis only, but it still promises to be a not-to-be-missed seasonal highlight. (Independent file photo)
Stettler Town and Country Museum hosts ‘Light the Night’

This year’s rendition is drive-through only, but will still prove to be a dazzling display

Opinion piece
Opinion: A down payment on recovery, details to come

Just to be clear: Justin Trudeau’s government has not acquired the ability… Continue reading

(Black Press File Photo)
Rimbey woman gathering Christmas gifts for seniors at Valleyview Manor

Margaret Tanasiuk says she doesn’t want anyone to feel forgotten on Christmas morning

Mike Miltimore, seen in Kamloops, B.C., in an undated handout photo, says the Gretsch electric guitar that a woman brought into his store is from 1955 and similar to one played by country music legend Chet Atkins before he developed his signature series of guitars. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Mike Miltimore
Guitar made in 1950s worth more than B.C. family imagined

KAMLOOPS, B.C. — When Renee Latheur decided to take an old guitar… Continue reading

Lewis Hamilton won the German Grand Prix after Sebastian Vettel crashed while leading near the end. (Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Hamilton positive for COVID-19, will miss F1’s Sakhir GP

SAKHIR, Bahrain — Seven-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton has tested positive… Continue reading

Most Read