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article imageTransCanada eyes eastern markets for LNG — awaits regulatory OK

By Karen Graham     Feb 19, 2019 in Business
Calgary - TransCanada Corp. is asking federal regulators for permission to sign new long-term supply contracts to ship gas from Western Canada through existing pipelines to eastern markets, including Atlantic Canada.
TransCanada notes they already have the support of two gas retailers in New Brunswick - Enbridge Gas New Brunswick and Irving Oil, according to CBC Canada.
TransCanada contends the LNG from the western provinces would fill the void left after ExxonMobil Canada Ltd.’s Sable Island facility shut at the end of December 2018. When the Sable project began in 1999, it led to the building of the Maritimes and Northeast pipeline to carry its gas down to the New England states.
More recently, the pipeline has been reversed to bring gas north to the province, but according to energy industry analyst Tom Adams, the gas coming north has to go through a bottleneck near Boston, causing higher prices in the winter months when it is most needed.
The Sable Offshore Energy Project
The Sable Offshore Energy Project
Canada-Niova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board
“From a consumer point of view it’s really sad news,” said Adams. “The consequence is that now every molecule — with the exception of a little bit of local onshore in eastern New Brunswick — almost all the gas supplied is coming in from New England. That means severe price volatility.”
Enbridge general manager Gilles Volpé says if the plan is approved, "it gives access to more capacity and more access to the Alberta-based natural gas. That natural gas is plentiful, of course, but it's also very stable from a price point of view." Volpé says natural gas bills could be reduced 30 to 40 percent.
This is not Energy East
Don't get TransCanada's plan to use existing pipelines to ship LNG east with the now defunct plans for Energy East. The Energy East pipeline would have carried heavy oil from Alberta to an export terminal in Saint John, but the project was abandoned due to new emission standards in the regulatory review.
The route of the TransCanada pipeline
The route of the TransCanada pipeline
DarrenBaker at English Wikipedia
The one and the only link between western Canada and eastern Canada and the Maritimes is the TransCanada pipeline that carries gas through Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, and Quebec. It is maintained by TransCanada PipeLines, LP. and is the longest pipeline in Canada.
After reaching Quebec, the pipeline crosses the Canada-U.S. border, carrying gas through U.S. lines in New England. The pipeline then travels north again to Canada via the Maritimes and Northeast Pipeline that links this region to the west.
This 14,114 kilometers (8,770 miles) pipeline, also called the Canadian Mainline, has evolved to accommodate additional supply connections closer to its markets. The mainline is over 60 years old.
By using this existing pipeline, "Eastern Canadian markets will be served by western Canadian gas, which is pretty exciting from our perspective," said Stefan Baranski, TransCanada's director of commercial markets in Eastern Canada.
Volpé says the company is already shipping "some gas" to Atlantic Canada along the pipeline - but "this provides more capacity to bring more gas this way."
A skilled worker is anyone who has had special training in a particular job  as have these workers i...
A skilled worker is anyone who has had special training in a particular job, as have these workers installing pipe on the Keystone pipeline.
Associated Press
Regulatory approval is 'critical'
The Energy Board must approve the proposal. Enbridge says the plan is "critical" to its New Brunswick operations. "EGNB does not have access to local supply, nor local natural gas storage facilities to meet its franchise needs at this time and considers [gas from the west] as a valuable asset in meeting the needs of Atlantic Canada long term."
Irving Oil's contract with TransCanada would start on November 1 if the proposal is approved, and it is "very supportive" of the plan, adding that it is "extremely important to Irving Oil in meeting its needs for secure and reliable natural gas supplies for its operations in Atlantic Canada."
CBC Canada notes that the proposed plan would fill some of the needs expressed in the Energy East plan that was discarded because the extra gas being sent East would help to fill the pipeline that has often been harboring unused space. In its filings with the National Energy Board, TransCanada says 17 companies have signed contracts ranging from 10 to 20½ years.
More about TransCanada, Lng, existing pipelines, Enbridge, Irving
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