The latest cost estimate for the expansion project, from March 2023, was nearly of $31 billion.
Therefore, as the Commission deliberates on this request and considers conditions to be imposed, it must be aware that every day counts now.
Trans Mountain says that, if approved, the pipeline could be placed immediately and allow the pipeline to be in service by the end of the first quarter of 2024.
The Canada Energy Regulator has already rejected a first modification request from Trans Mountain in the fall. In her decision, she expressed concern about the quality management program of the Crown Corporation.
At the hearing Friday, commissioners again asked questions about this management program and how Trans Mountain was complying with it.
With all the work of the last 10 years on the project, all the contingency plans to adapt to all scenarios […] How did we get here today with, once again, a new request for modification?, also asked Commissioner Trena Grimoldby.
Trans Mountain's lawyer argued that the length of the pipeline and the complexity of the project did not allow us to consider all the geological difficulties linked to this section.
I am cautiously optimistic that this is our last [problem], he replied.
The three commissioners reserved their decision until a later date.
The Trans Mountain expansion project involves tripling the capacity to transport oil between the Alberta and the Pacific Coast, particularly for export to Asia.
The government of Justin Trudeau purchased it in 2018 for 4.4 billion Canadian dollars to ensure construction continues.