Canadian Energy Regulator Approves Enbridge's Line 3 Pipeline

Canada’s National Energy Board approved Enbridge Inc.’s Line 3 replacement project, while imposing conditions including a plan for monitoring and decommissioning the conduit.

The regulator imposed 89 conditions for the project to replace the aging 86-centimeter (34-inch) pipeline, boosting capacity to 760,000 barrels per day from 390,000 barrels now, Robert Steedman, the NEB’s chief environmental officer, said Monday at a briefing in Calgary. The federal government will make the final decision on the pipeline.

“The Enbridge Line 3 Project is in the Canadian public interest and is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects,” Steedman said. The federal government has three month to approve the project, though that can be extended, he added.

Enbridge is upgrading existing lines to increase capacity in order to accommodate rising volumes of crude from western Canada. Line 3 also faces a regulatory process in the U.S. to approve the section of the pipeline in that country.

The conditions for the Line 3 project include keeping the permits up-to-date and ensuring that the pipeline isn’t uncovered in the event of a once-in-one-hundred year flood, the regulator said. The conduit will cover 1,096 kilometers (681 miles) of Canadian territory from the Hardisty, Alberta to Greta, Manitoba.

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