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NEB stops HDD operations at NGTL

Published by
World Pipelines,

The National Energy Board (NEB) has issued an Inspection Officer Order (order) to NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd. (NGTL). The order requires the immediate cessation of all further horizontal directional drilling (HDD) activity under the Athabasca River at the company’s McDermott Extension natural gas pipeline project, which is located 75 km north of Fort McMurray, Alberta.

The NEB Order follows four separate incidents during which drilling resulted in the unintended release of drilling fluid into the Athabasca River. One slope failure was also recorded.

The NEB responded immediately and continues to investigate the incidents; including an evaluation of the drilling mud composition and volumes released.

The NEB confirms that NGTL is currently in non-compliance with NEB regulations for its failure to adhere to the NEB-approved Environmental Protection Plan. The Onshore Pipeline Regulations requires the company to “develop, implement and maintain an environmental protection programme that anticipates, prevents, manages and mitigates conditions that could adversely affect the environment.”

All agencies have been notified and the NEB investigation continues.

Edited from source by Stephanie Roker

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