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Alaska Pipeline Project Files Open Season Plan

Posted on January 29, 2010

The Alaska Pipeline Project announced today that it filed its plan with the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to obtain approval to conduct the first natural gas pipeline open season to develop Alaska’s North Slope natural gas resources. The project is a joint effort between TransCanada Corporation (TransCanada) and Exxon Mobil Corporation to develop a natural gas pipeline under the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act (AGIA).

“The open season plan filing is an important step in the development of Alaska natural gas resources and we have worked diligently to advance the project,” said Hal Kvisle, TransCanada president and CEO.

Two options will be submitted for assessment during the open season. The first is a 2737 km pipeline from Alaska’s North Slope to Alberta, Canada and existing pipeline systems serving major North American markets. Option two would transport natural gas about 1287 km to a future LNG project at Valdez, Alaska for shipment to North American and international markets. Both options include a gas treatment plant to be located next to existing Prudhoe Bay facilities and 93-km pipeline connecting the Point Thomson field to the plant and pipeline. This filing applies to the U.S. portion of the project. A separate but concurrent open season for the Canadian portion will be held. The plan can be reviewed on the FERC and Alaska Pipeline Project websites, and comments can be made through February. If approved, the Alaska Pipeline Project will finalize its open season offering at the end of April for a 90-day assessment period through July 2010.

Updated cost estimates for the project are in the range of US$32 billion to US$41 billion for the North Slope to Alberta option, and US$20 billion to US$26 billion for the Valdez option. Both options have an expected in-service date of 2020 and would provide either 4.5 Bcfd (127 x 106 m3/day) under the Alberta option or 3.0 Bcfd (85 x 106 m3/day) under the Valdez option.

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