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Coastal GasLink developer halts clearing work on part of C$6.2B gas line

A TC Energy Corp. subsidiary suspended all clearing work on a section of the 670-kilometer natural gas pipeline that would serve a planned Royal Dutch Shell PLC-led LNG facility on British Columbia's coast, citing a lack of required assessments in place before construction began.

Coastal GasLink Pipeline Ltd. said an internal audit found that construction started at two areas along the pipeline route before archaeological impact assessments were completed, according to an Aug. 1 news release. Such assessments are conditions for the project's BC Oil and Gas Commission permit and its environmental assessment certificate.

The developer will lift the suspension when an internal review is complete and measures are taken to avoid similar incidents in the future.

"Coastal GasLink regrets the errors that led to construction activities taking place without having approved archaeological impact assessments in place prior to start of construction," Coastal GasLink President David Pfeiffer said a statement. "I have also apologized to the impacted indigenous communities and requested their participation in a proposed post-impact assessment."

The C$6.2 billion pipeline would connect natural gas fields in northeastern British Columbia to the Shell-led C$40 billion LNG Canada Development Inc. project in Kitimat, British Columbia. Canada's National Energy Board recently dismissed an application to have the Coastal GasLink project shifted to federal regulation because of potential connections to or joint operations with TC Energy's NOVA Gas Transmission network.