Prince Rupert Gas Transmission project searches for partners

TransCanada is renewing permits for its natural gas pipeline project to North Coast.

TransCanada is actively pursuing a revival of its Prince Rupert Gas Transmission (PRGT) pipeline project, which was cancelled in mid-2017 after the cancellation of the Pacific Northwest LNG terminal on Lelu Island.

“There appears to be interest by a number of parties in investigating a second major LNG (liquified natural gas) project in B.C. which would target an in-service date post mid-decade,” Terry Cunha, a TransCanada spokesperson said in an email. “While no announcements are imminent, work is being done to assess the viability of projects within the service area of our PRGT pipeline project.”

Cunha would not divulge who the interested parties are, citing confidentiality, but did note the company believes conditions are favourable.

“Our understanding of global supply and demand for LNG would seem to support another B.C. project targeting the post-2025 period.”

Renewed public interest in the project comes on the heels of an announcement that Coastal GasLink has named David Pfeiffer to replace Richard Gateman as president of that TransCanada subsidiary’s pipeline project. Gateman has been moved to president of the PRGT project and TransCanada vice-president for non-regulated assets.

TransCanada has remained committed to the pipeline that was intended to move LNG from northeast B.C. to the Pacific Northwest LNG facility proposed for Prince Rupert since Malaysia’s state-owned oil company Petronas pulled the plug on the project in July 2017.

Calgary-based TransCanada is currently taking steps to be ready to move forward with a new partner.

“We are in the process of renewing our Environmental Certificate and our OGC [Oil and Gas Commission permits for PRGT and do not anticipate the need for new major permit applications,” Cunha wrote.

They are also in discussions with other stakeholders, he said.

“We have recently re-visited our project with most First Nations along the route and with the B.C. government. There remains a strong level of support from all.”

The BCOGC confirmed that PRGT has applied to extend its environmental assessment certificate, which expires Nov. 25, 2019.

 

- Thom Barker

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