Development of BC Gas's proposed Inland Pacific Connector Pipeline will continue ...
Development of BC Gas's proposed Inland Pacific Connector Pipeline will continue after a recent open season closed with significant interest from a number of parties seeking to purchase
capacity on the pipeline.
"Although the available capacity is not fully subscribed at this time,
there is enough interest to warrant continued development of the pipeline,"
said Rich Ballantyne, BC Gas director of transmission and project development.
BC Gas is pursuing contract negotiations with the interested companies.
Names of the companies and the volumes they are interested in contracting for
on the pipeline will remain confidential until agreements are in place. This
should occur by the end of December 2001.
"Our development of this project has spurred other players in the market
to develop additional pipeline capacity that will help with some of the supply
problems in the short term," Ballantyne said. "However, we remain convinced
that the long-term demand for natural gas in the Lower Mainland, Vancouver
Island, Fraser Valley and Pacific Northwest remains high and the Inland
Pacific Connector will absolutely be required no later than 2004."
The 246-kilometre Inland Pacific Connector Pipeline will link the
recently built Southern Crossing Pipeline in Oliver to the regional marketing
hub in Huntingdon. Total cost of the project is estimated as $495 million. The
new pipeline will increase the supply of natural gas to the Lower Mainland and
help prevent dramatic price increases like those experienced last winter.
BC Gas has determined a preferred route for the pipeline that is intended
to minimize the impact on the environment, taking into account safety, land
use issues and project costs. BC Gas is engaged in pre-application
consultation with the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office and involved
government agencies regarding the provincial environmental review. The company
has also filed preliminary information with the Canadian Environmental
Assessment Agency in order to initiate the federal environmental review of the
During the past month BC Gas held extensive meetings and open houses in
the Fraser Valley and South Okanagan in order to hear from the public, land
owners, First Nations, and government officials. This consultation process
will continue as the choice of the pipeline route is examined.
"The public input has been informed and helpful. People are very
interested in this project and we are working to address the concerns they
have raised," Ballantyne said.
For more information on the project, visit the BC Gas website at
BC Gas Inc. is a leading provider of energy and utility services in
western Canada through its two principal operating subsidiaries, BC Gas
Utility Ltd. and Trans Mountain Pipe Line Company Ltd., and through a number
of non-regulated related businesses. BC Gas Utility is the largest distributor
of natural gas in British Columbia, serving 764,000 customers.