Transcanada receives final permit for Keystone Gulf Coast leg from U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

by on July 27, 2012 12:00 am BST

Transcanada receives final permit for Keystone Gulf Coast leg from U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

HOUSTON — TransCanada has received the final of three key permits needed from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to advance the 485-mi Gulf Coast project. With the permit from the Fort Worth, Texas Army Corps district added to previously received permits from the Galveston, Texas and the Tulsa, Oklahoma districts, TransCanada is now in a position to start construction of the oil pipeline in the coming weeks.

The company has voluntarily agreed to 57 additional safety procedures that will be incorporated into the construction of the crude oil pipelines, including a higher number of remotely controlled shutoff valves, increased pipeline inspections and burying the pipe deeper in the ground. TransCanada also uses horizontal directional drilling to drill under major rivers a minimum of 25 ft.  This will allow Transcanada to bury the pipe deeper on both sides of the river bank, offering protection from floods or high river levels. The pipe will be made of thicker steel as it crosses rivers, will operate at a lower pressure and be further protected by advanced non-abrasive coatings.

Transcanada operates an existing 2,154-mi Keystone pipeline from Alberta to Cushing, Oklahoma and Wood River/Patoka, Illinois has delivered more than 280-million barrels of Canadian crude oil to U.S. markets since July 2010.

The U.S. Department of State is currently reviewing TransCanada’s application for a Presidential Permit to proceed with the 1,179-mi Keystone XL pipeline from Hardisty, Alberta to Steele City, Nebraska and is expected to make a decision in the first quarter of 2013. TransCanada also continues to work with the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality to finalize a route that avoids the environmentally sensitive Sandhills area of Nebraska.