Canada’s Trans Mountain pipeline is finally open for business after completion of expansion efforts

'TMX will also result in billions of dollars of economic prosperity for Albertans, and create well-paying jobs throughout Canada,’ said Alberta Premier Danielle Smith and Energy Minister Brian Jean.

Canada’s Trans Mountain pipeline is finally open for business after completion of expansion efforts
The Canadian Press / Justin Tang and The Canadian Press / Jason Franson
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Alberta Premier Danielle Smith and Energy Minister Brian Jean welcomed the newly expanded Trans Mountain pipeline after years of construction and considerable delays.

“Alberta is celebrating an important achievement for the energy industry — the start-up of the twinned Trans Mountain pipeline,” reads a joint statement. 

The Canada Energy Regulator gave the final stamp of approval for the project to open after green-lighting outstanding “leave to open” applications from Trans Mountain Corp.

The pipeline expansion project took four years to construct and racked up a total cost of more than $34 billion. The original cost, when the project was still in the private sector, was expected to be around $7.4 billion before the Trudeau Liberals purchased the pipeline in 2018. 

Despite the costs, the Government of Alberta lauded its completion as “great news” for Albertans and Canadians, ushering in a “new era of prosperity and economic growth.”

With narrowing price differentials, the pipeline is expected to generate millions of dollars in additional revenue, according to the news release.

“TMX will also result in billions of dollars of economic prosperity for Albertans, Indigenous communities and Canadians and create well-paying jobs throughout Canada,” said the Government of Alberta.

It employed more than 30,000 skilled workers.

Following the completion of Trans Mountain, the capacity of the original pipeline now triples to 890,000 barrels per day of crude oil from Alberta’s oil sands to British Columbia’s Pacific Coast.

Wednesday marks the commercial commencement date for the expansion, with both pipelines transporting oil.

The added capacity is expected to improve the price Canadian oil companies receive for their product by opening up access to global markets.

“This will allow us to get our energy resources to Pacific markets, including Washington State and California, and Asian markets like Japan, South Korea, China, and India,” reads the statement. 

Smith and Jean rejoiced at the prospects of new energy customers. 

“For Alberta this is a game-changer,” they said, “the world needs more reliably and sustainably sourced Alberta energy, not less.”

Tankers containing Alberta oil are expected to unload in China and India over the next several months.

Trans Mountain Corp confirmed the first transport ship will load with Alberta crude in the coming weeks, owing to logistics and marine timing.

“World demand for oil and gas resources will continue in the decades ahead and the new pipeline expansion will give us the opportunity to meet global energy demands and increase North American and global energy security and help remove the issues of energy poverty in other parts of the world,” reads the statement.

Despite continued turmoil on the future of energy development in Canada, the province congratulated Ottawa for “seeing this project through.” The Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is owned by the federal government. 

“This is a great example of an area where the provincial and federal government can cooperate and work together for the benefit of Albertans and all Canadians,” claimed Smith and Jean.

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