Pengrowth to twin pipeline in Olds area

Pengrowth Energy Corp. is planning to twin a 6.4-km stretch of pipeline in the Olds area.

Pengrowth Energy Corp. is planning to twin a 6.4-km stretch of pipeline in the Olds area.

The pipeline project has been proposed to allow the Calgary-based energy company to bring in another 10 million cubic feet per day of sweet natural gas from the Westward Ho area east of Sundre to the Olds gas plant, said chief operating officer Marlon McDougall.

A new system has already been built in stages up to the Olds gathering system, where the flow will be split, with sour gas going down the new section running south to the plant, five km south of Olds. The existing sour gas line will then carry predominantly sweet gas, said McDougall.

The sour gas section of pipeline will be rated for 13.74 per cent hydrogen sulphide content but will actually carry around 3.5 per cent. Sweet gas is below one per cent content.

Notices have already gone out to affected landowners and the company is meeting them all in person. A two-week deadline for comments or objections will expire in the next few days.

“We’re following the standard procedure with respect to notifying the surrounding landowners and describing the project to them and obviously going through the regulatory process,” he said.

No objections have been raised so far from the dozen landowners along the short route, which will largely follow the same path as the existing line. One landowner asked the line not to cross his property and a short jog was created.

The company operates the Olds gas plant, which has been in place for 26 years. An extensive emergency response plan is in place around the plant, encompassing the town as well as the new section of line.

“We’re very comfortable with our operating practices and with our safety and integrity standards,” McDougall said.

“We have extensive emergency response plans for the entire area.”

Emergency shutdown valves and other safety measures will be in place.

“It will be built with the latest in technology. The emergency shutdown systems will be in place to isolate the pipeline along the way to reduce any potential release of gas.”

The pipeline is not expected to produce odours and emissions.

Pengrowth will address any statements of concern and sign off on those before submitting its licence to the Alberta Energy Regulator.

Following approval, construction is expected to start in June with a July completion.

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