Where will Trans Mountain get their power?
by Korie Marshall – The Rocky Mountain Goat
Kinder Morgan will require additional power, especially in the North Thompson valley from Kamloops to their pumping station at Rearguard Falls, if their proposed Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion is approved. But they won’t say yet how they will get it.
Kinder Morgan estimates the expansion would require an additional 16.7 MW of power, mainly to supply the new pump stations between Rearguard (just north of Valemount) and Kamloops. Borealis Geopower’s proposed geothermal electricity project is estimated to produce 5-10 MW of power.
A statement from Kinder Morgan says they submitted an initial application to BC Hydro in June 2012, outlining their anticipated power requirements for the expansion. In fall 2012, they provided funding to BC Hydro for a scoping study to determine the infrastructure that would be needed to provide that power, and the results were expected by the end of 2013. After the scoping study, BC Hydro would need to do a more detailed study to determine the exact engineering requirements and capital costs. Kinder Morgan is responsible for costs of all project-related applications and studies.
The statement says Kinder Morgan understands that additional power infrastructure will be required in the North Thompson. It also says they are aware some community residents have expressed concerns about power supply in the area, and that BC Hydro has addressed the issue with local governments.
Kinder Morgan anticipates the required infrastructure will be a combination of additions and upgrades to BC Hydro’s current system. Kinder Morgan is not participating directly in any new power projects, but will be responsible to BC Hydro for the costs directly related to the expansion, and BC Hydro will decide how to recover those costs from Kinder Morgan.
A spokesperson for BC Hydro says they will not release the scoping study publicly because it contains confidential customer information. Repeated requests to Kinder Morgan asking if they would be releasing the study have received no response.