PRINCE GEORGE, BRITISH COLUMBIA–(Marketwired – Jan. 20, 2016) – TransCanada Corporation (TSX:TRP) (NYSE:TRP) (TransCanada) today announced its Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project has signed long-term project agreements with Nadleh Whut’en First Nation and West Moberly First Nations. Coastal GasLink has now secured 11 project agreements and continues to make good progress toward concluding agreements with other First Nations along the pipeline route. These agreements outline benefits and commitments that will be provided to these communities for as long as the pipeline is in service.
“Our early and consistent engagement with First Nations has helped establish trust and lay the groundwork for these project agreements,” said Rick Gateman, Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project president. “The deep familiarity and knowledge that First Nations have with their land is a tremendous benefit that TransCanada draws upon throughout its project planning process. These agreements represent only the beginning of the continued discussion and feedback that we will continue to incorporate throughout the construction and operation of this project.”
Coastal GasLink has a comprehensive approach to working with Aboriginal groups on opportunities related to B.C.’s emerging liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry, including developing skills training, employment and utilizing Aboriginal businesses in local contracting opportunities.
“We have worked closely with the Coastal GasLink team to ensure our culture, the environment, safety and economic benefits are considered,” said Chief Roland Willson, West Moberly First Nations.
To date, the Coastal GasLink team has had approximately 15,000 interactions and engagements with Aboriginal communities along the proposed pipeline route, and a quarter of the over 333,000 hours of fieldwork on the project has been conducted by Aboriginal people. In addition, this modern energy infrastructure project will provide long-term economic benefits for B.C. and Canada. An estimated 32 per cent of this $4.8 billion plus capital project will be spent locally in B.C., with economic benefits including over 2,000 jobs during construction and in excess of $20 million in annual property tax payments. The project has already spent over $41 million in Northern B.C. plus over $1.9 million in community investments along the route.
Coastal GasLink is proposing to construct and operate a 670-kilometre natural gas pipeline from the Groundbirch area near Dawson Creek, B.C. to the proposed LNG Canada liquefied natural gas export facility near Kitimat, B.C. The project is a key component of TransCanada’s capital growth plan, which includes more than $13 billion in proposed natural gas pipeline projects.