In order to complete the Expansion Project, Trans Mountain needs to reactivate two deactivated sections of the pipeline system. The Jasper reactivation is 150-kilometre segment from Hinton, AB to Hargreaves, BC, and the West Barriere reactivation, a 42-kilometre section from Darfield to Black Pines, BC. 

The Jasper (Hinton to Hargreaves) segment was taken out of service in 2008 after the construction of the Anchor Loop Project, when a 160 km-section of 36-inch pipe was constructed adjacent to the existing 24-inch line through Alberta, BC, Jasper National Park and Mt. Robson Provincial Park.

The West Barriere (Darfield to Black Pines) 24-inch segment was twinned in 1957 with 30-inch pipe a few years after the original line was constructed in 1953, which is currently in operation. The adjacent section of the original 24-inch pipeline was deactivated in 2004. Reactivation requires 42 kms of the 24-inch pipeline to return to service.

While both segments have remained inactive for a number of years, the lines have been monitored and maintained continuously by Trans Mountain under National Energy Board (NEB) regulation.

The two segments of 24-inch pipeline will be tied in to the operating sections of thepipeline for the federally-approved Expansion Project.

Condition 19 of the NEB approval of the Project requires Trans Mountain to complete engineering studies to ensure reactivation work results in a high level of operational integrity for the reactivated segments. The required engineering assessment will be completed by Trans Mountain and a certificate will be prepared and submitted to the NEB by an independent third party to validate the reactivated segments are fit for operational service.

Activities to support reactivation will be completed over approximately two years. Work on the pipeline will occur at many points along each section between the Hinton Pump Station in Alberta and Hargreaves, BC, as well as between the Darfield Pump Station and the Black Pines Pump Station, which will be located on a Kinder Morgan-owned rural property.  

Some activities are already underway in both segments of the pipeline, including preparation to complete a comprehensive inspection of the inactive pipeline. Once preparations are complete, a series of highly sensitive electronic tools will run through the inactive sections of pipeline. These in-line inspection tools will identify any features, such as corrosion, dents or cracks, as they travel through the pipe. The tools will be inserted into the pipeline at Hinton, AB, and removed 150 km away at the Hargreaves trap site in BC. The tools will then be inserted at Black Pines and removed 42 km away in Darfield, BC. The data collected from the internal inspections will determine the type of work required to ensure these sections of pipeline are safe and ready to be part of the active system again.

The inspection tools are propelled by compressed nitrogen, transported to site in a liquid form which will be then be vented into the atmosphere during portions of the tool run, as well as at the completion of the run. Nitrogen venting is a common practice and when released is a harmless, inert gas and makes up four-fifths of the air we breathe.

To enable the inspections, there will also be a segment of pipe installed within our existing Jasper, AB, pump station facility, which was removed as part of the deactivation of the pipeline in 2008.  Also, a short section of pipeline will be installed at the former Yellowhead pump station in Mount Robson Provincial Park and will similarly replace a section previously removed.

Other activities that will occur as part of reactivation include:

·       Field surveying

·       Installing temporary structures

·       Mobilizing equipment and materials to the worksites, including transportation of liquid nitrogen

·       Inspection and refurbishing of existing valves

·       Installing new valves and automating a selection of existing valves

·       Venting of compressed nitrogen gas  

Additional reactivation activities to prepare the pipeline for service include:

·       Upgrading select water crossings and remediation of other identified natural hazards

·       Removal of existing pipeline sleeves

·       Integrity digs and associated pipeline repair

·       Hydrostatic testing

  Regular detailed updates on activities related to reactivation will be posted on our website as more information becomes available.