Kinder Morgan to post pipeline route options

Open house June 13

Kinder Morgan Canada has submitted its project description on the Trans Mountain expansion project to the National Energy Board and plans to follow up with routing options next week.

The description is a general outline of the proposed expansion project, which would have the 60-year-old pipeline through Kamloops twinned, almost tripling its capacity to 890,000 barrels per day.

"It's a preliminary document that signals our intent to file the application," said Lisa Clement, spokeswoman for the project. "It's the beginning of the regulatory process."

The 100-page document - which can be found at the NEB website or through a link on the Trans Mountain website - is a mandatory requirement of the board, a green light that tells the federal agency that an application is coming. The NEB responds by planning its own public engagement on the project.

Clement said there should be nothing new in the description for people who have been tracking the progress of the proposal.

"It's what we've publicly been saying, but it's in writing."

Kinder Morgan announced its plans to expand the pipeline a year ago. The company proposes:

* Installing 981 kilometres of new, buried pipeline (to be located adjacent to the existing pipe, within the current right-of-way, where practical).

* Reactivating existing pipeline segments.

* Installing 11 new pump stations, 21 storage tanks and associated facllities.

* Expanding the Westridge marine terminal in Burnaby.

A comprehensive facilities application is on schedule to be filed later this year.

Routing options pertaining to the Kamloops area will be posted online at www.transmountain.com on June 7, Clement said.

These are the details stakeholders in the region - including communities and residents located along the existing route - will want to know prior to the next public open house in Kamloops.

The Kamloops routing open house, which will include information on environmental impacts and land use, takes place on June 13, 4-8 p.m., at Coast Kamloops Hotel and Convention Centre. People are invited to drop by anytime between those hours.

Kinder Morgan just completed the second round of public hearings in Alberta.

Trans Mountain expansion would involve a capital investment of $5.4 billion.

The proposal became political football during the recent provincial election after NDP Leader Adrian Dix visited Kamloops and announced his reluctance to support the project if it meant making Vancouver into a major oil port.

Liberals jumped on Dix's statement and it is believed to have been a key turning point in the election.

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