(Calgary) The estimated cost of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project jumped again, this time hitting $30.9 billion.
This is an increase of around 44% on the previous estimate, which a year ago projected costs of 21.4 billion. An earlier estimate called for spending $12.6 billion on the project.
The federal Crown corporation that owns the pipeline attributed the new cost spike to a number of factors, including inflation and supply chain issues, flooding in British Columbia and unexpected significant archaeological discoveries along of the plot.
Previous cost increases had been attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic, schedule pressures related to approval processes for thousands of permits, and construction challenges in marine environments and difficult terrain, among other things.
“Canada maintains some of the highest standards in the world when it comes to protecting people and the environment, and involving Indigenous peoples in the construction of major infrastructure projects,” the city said in a statement on Friday. President and CEO of Trans Mountain Corporation, Dawn Farrell.
“By incorporating these commitments into the initial design and development stages of the project, we have ensured that the project will provide economic benefits to Canadians for many years to come”
Trans Mountain Corporation added that it was in the process of obtaining external funds to finance the remaining cost of the project.
The Trans Mountain Line transports 1,150 km of 300,000 barrels of oil per day and is the only pipeline system in Canada that moves oil from Alberta to the West Coast.
Its expansion will increase the pipeline’s capacity by 590,000 barrels per day, bringing it to a total of 890,000 barrels per day.
Construction of the project is nearly 80% complete, Trans Mountain Corporation said Friday. Mechanical completion is expected by the end of this year and the pipeline is expected to be operational in the first quarter of 2024.