National Energy Board (NEB) in Canada has released 145 draft conditions for the $5.4bn Trans Mountain pipeline expansion which US energy giant Kinder Morgan has to follow if it moves ahead with the project.
According to the NEB recommendations, the firm might need to dedicate $1.1bn in liability coverage for the expansion project and give detailed plans about how it intends to protect endangered species and cut down greenhouse gas emissions.
The draft, however, does not indicate approval for the project and can change after further NEB hearings.
“Our initial review of the draft conditions is that they are rigorous but achievable.”
NEB spokesperson Tara O’Donovan was quoted by The Globe and Mail as saying: “We could see more conditions attached to the final recommendation or less. It depends on what we hear in these final stages of the hearing.
“They may look slightly different than what we’re floating today.”
Kinder Morgan intends to almost triple the bitumen-carrying capacity of the Trans Mountain line to 890,000 barrels a day.
The firm’s $5.4bn proposal for expansion of the pipeline, which extends from Edmonton to Burnaby, will include construction of an additional 1,000km of new pipe.
This expansion initiative, though supported by global energy majors, has been criticised and opposed by environmental and local groups over concerns about potential spills and the resultant increased tanker traffic off the British Columbia coast.
Kinder Morgan Canada president Ian Anderson said: “Our initial review of the draft conditions is that they are rigorous but achievable.
“We will be providing further comments and will be seeking clarification particularly as to the timing of certain conditions and required approval processes when we file our comments on August 20, 2015.”