NEB Approves Northwest Mainline Expansion

CALGARY, Feb. 28, 2012 /CNW/ - In a decision issued today, the National Energy Board (NEB or Board) announced its approval of the Northwest Mainline Expansion Project (the project) submitted by NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd (NGTL).

The project includes the construction and operation of three new natural gas pipeline loops totaling 111.2 kilometres (km) in northeast British Columbia and northwest Alberta. The pipeline loops would be alongside existing rights-of-way (RoW).

The $324 million project will link natural gas supplies from the Upper Peace River area to markets in Canada and the United States. The Board accepts NGTL's submission that there is adequate market demand for the gas to be transported by the project.

The Board is satisfied with NGTL's efforts in minimizing potential environmental impacts by proposing a RoW that is largely alongside existing RoWs. Should the project be constructed, it would not result in new permanent access roads.

The NEB's approval of this project is contingent on conditions that NGTL must meet. The conditions relate to pipeline integrity, the protection of the environment, protection and monitoring of caribou habitat, and matters of public and Aboriginal consultation.

The company is required to submit regular updates to the NEB on consultation activities with Aboriginal groups and describe how any concerns were addressed. As well, NGTL must provide the NEB with a plan regarding Aboriginal participation in construction monitoring.

The NEB issued Hearing Order GH-2-2011 on 10 June 2011 and held a two-day public hearing in Fort Nelson, British Columbia starting on 29 November 2011.

The NEB is an independent federal regulator of several parts of Canada's energy industry. Its purpose is to regulate pipelines, energy development and trade in the Canadian public interest.

This news release is available on the NEB's Internet site at www.neb-one.gc.ca under What's New!

SOURCE National Energy Board

For further information:

Erin Dottor (erin.dottor@neb-one.gc.ca)
Communications Officer
Telephone: 403-299-3712
TTY (teletype): 1-800-632-1663


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