Expansion of Trans Mountain oil pipeline would be delayed by months and incur hundreds of millions of dollars of additional cost, unless its route is changed, the Canadian government corporation building the pipeline said in a filing.
Trans Mountain Corp (TMC) urged the Canada Energy Regulator to change the approved route on a 1.3-kilometre (0.8 mile) section just south of Kamloops, British Columbia, as micro-tunneling construction required on the route is not feasible technically or economically.
TMC feared that continuing with the micro-tunneling process would add “significant risks, costs and in-service date delays” for the project.
The Trans Mountain pipeline is Canada’s only pipeline system transporting oil from Alberta to the West Coast and its expansion will boost the pipeline’s capacity to 890,000 barrels per day (bpd) from 300,000 bpd currently.
“Each month of delay in the in-service date results in roughly $200 million in lost revenues and roughly $190 million in carrying charges for Trans Mountain,” TMC said in the filing on Thursday.
Shippers and other parties relying on the expansion project will also incur losses from such delays.
The reroute proposal is facing opposition from the Stk’emlupsemc te Secwepemc Nation (SSN), an indigenous group whose territory the pipeline crosses.