Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Shell Waterton receives ERCB approval for Beaver Mines area pipelines and gas battery

Chris Davis, Pincher Creek Voice

Yesterday May 28, 2013 Alberta's Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB) announced they have approved Shell Waterton's applications to construct and operate a 1.2 km pipeline to transport sour natural gas, a 1.2 km pipeline to transport fuel gas, and to construct and operate a single well gas battery in the Waterton Field, which is located about 5.8 km southwest of Beaver Mines.

In their application Shell said they required the two pipelines in order to produce the company’s existing Waterton 68 well, which was approved by the ERCB in 2011.  Public ERCB hearings were held in March of this year in Pincher Creek to consider the applications and to hear concerns from concerned area citizens at which a small but vocal opposition to the project was present.

According to the ERCB press release, "In approving the applications, the Board was satisfied that Shell had demonstrated it had met the conditions previously imposed by the Board as part of the approval of the Waterton 68 well and could operate the existing pipeline system and the new pipelines safely."

Four conditions were attached to the approval:

  • Shell must continue to conduct internal pipeline corrosion monitoring of Shell’s existing Carbondale pipeline system once every six months using a monitoring tool prescribed by the ERCB.
  • Shell must implement nine recommendations identified in a report submitted as evidence during the course of the hearing. The nine recommendations are related to air quality monitoring in the Screwdriver Creek Valley.
  • Shell must revise its emergency response plan prior to the startup of the pipelines and facility.
  • Shell must conduct a blind major emergency response plan exercise, designed by an independent third party, prior to the pipeline operations to further test its emergency response capability. 


Related story:
MD Council meeting notes from December, 2012

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