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Calgary, Alberta (Oct 09, 2014)…
The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) has approved, with conditions, the majority of the applications submitted by Grand Rapids Pipeline GP Ltd. to construct two 460-kilometre (km) transmission main lines. Also included in the approval is construction of two 4-km lateral pipelines, three pump stations, and two tank terminals with a combined storage of approximately 1 million barrels.
The AER considered 90 applications, which included 7 applications under the Pipeline Act, 79 applications under the Public Lands Act, and 4 applications under the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act. Eighty-four of the applications were approved.
When completed, the project will transport 900 000 barrels per day (bbl/d) of diluted bitumen from the Fort MacKay terminal to the Edmonton area and 330 000 bbl/d of hydrocarbon diluent from the Edmonton area to the Fort MacKay terminal. The pipelines will be constructed in phases.
After receiving a number of statements of concern, the AER held a two-week public hearing in June and July. The hearing closed July 18. Hearing submissions were received from 12 participants. The Grand Rapids hearing was the first AER hearing to consider multiple applications under the Pipeline Act, Public Lands Act, and Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act.
The panel has set out 26 conditions for Grand Rapids, which are summarized in the appendices of the decision report. Several conditions of the approval relate to two sections of the pipeline that traverse lands within Strathcona County’s Heavy Industrial Policy Area and lands within and immediately adjacent to the City of Fort Saskatchewan. Grand Rapids is not permitted to construct these segments of the line, which account for approximately five per cent of the proposed route, unless it satisfies the panel that the applied-for route is the best route.
The panel also found that Grand Rapids did not demonstrate a need for the Saleski Terminal at this time and did not approve this facility. The remaining conditions address issues raised by landowners along the project route or require Grand Rapids to implement enhanced environmental monitoring and mitigation measures to ensure protection of key environmental and wildlife resources, including watercourses, wetlands, key wildlife and biodiversity zones and caribou.
The decision report is available on the AER website at www.aer.ca.
The Alberta Energy Regulator ensures the safe, efficient, orderly, and environmentally responsible development of hydrocarbon resources over their entire life cycle. This includes allocating and conserving water resources, managing public lands, and protecting the environment while providing economic benefits for all Albertans.
The Alberta Energy Regulator approved, with conditions, the Grand Rapids Pipeline GP Ltd’s project applications, following a two-week hearing in Edmonton. The AER panel’s decision includes 26 conditions, which relate to sections of the pipeline, issues raised by landowners and requirements to enhance environmental monitoring and mitigation measures. The report is available at www.aer.ca.
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For more information, please contact:Carrie Rosa, AER Office of Public Affairs