Plateau Pipeline open house set for Fort St. John

A company seeking to build a 160-kilometre pipeline from Wonowon to Taylor will hold an open house in Fort St. John Oct. 21 in conjunction with the British Columbia Environmental Assessment Office (EAO).

Plateau Pipeline Ltd.'s proposed Northeast B.C. Expansion project would add 75,000 barrels a day of condensate and natural gas liquids to the company's system.

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Plateau is a subsidiary of Calgary-based Pembina Pipeline Corp.

The proposed pipeline must first obtain an environmental assessment certificate before it can proceed. 

Before Plateau can apply for a certificate, the EAO has to approve a list of specific areas of study in relation to the project, which can include aspects of the natural and human environment that have a social, cultural, historical, ecological, scientific, economic, or other importance. 

The EAO is asking for the public to attend the open house to comment on an established list of areas that will be impacted by the project as it moves through an ongoing environmental assessment. A list of these study areas will be provided at the event.

The pipeline will run from the Highway 97/Blair Creek area north of Wonowon to an existing terminal in Taylor.

The company has noted that the need for a pipeline in the area is based on its desire to reduce truck traffic on local highways. Up to 100 trucks per day are currently required to transport gas, Plateau says. 

Plateau requested earlier this year that the project be allowed to forego an environmental assessment, but later withdrew the request.

"We (withdrew) this request to ensure that all First Nations and public concerns are identified and fulsomely addressed," Pembina spokesperson Jason Fydirchuk said in an email.

In April, the Peace River Regional District (PRRD), in response to the company's original request for exemption, sent a letter to the EAO asking that the project undergo an assessment. 

"The project description does not contain sufficient information on the pipeline route along private property," the PRRD said in a report tabled April 23.

About 46 per cent of the pipeline's right-of-way is within the Agricultural Land Reserve.

About 400 workers will be employed during the 12-month construction period of the proposed project. If it goes ahead, about six people will be employed full-time after construction throughout the pipeline's 25-year lifespan.

Construction crews working on the proposed project would be housed primarily in existing camps in the Pink Mountain area, with travel and "interactions between camp-based workers and nearby communities expected to be minimal," the project description states. 

If given environmental approval, the project has an expected in-service date of 2017.

The open house will be held at the Pomeroy Hotel & Conference Centre's Marie Room, located at 11308 Alaska Road, from 4:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

dcreporter@dcdn.ca

@ Copyright Pipeline News North

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