Wednesday, December 20, 2017

With two LPG terminals planned for Prince Rupert, rail safety is on the mind of MP Nathan Cullen

The prospect of shipments of Liquid Propane Gas to Prince Rupert
terminals is starting to gain some attention for communities
that are located along the CN line between Prince Rupert and Prince George

(map from CN Rail website)

One part of the discussion on the development of Liquid Propane Terminals on the North Coast that hasn't gained a lot of attention to this point, is the volume of rail car traffic that will transit through every community along the CN Northern line into the Peace Country, once shipments begin out of the Port of Prince Rupert.

That debate however may now get a bit more of focus as MP Nathan Cullen puts a bit of a spotlight on the issue of rail safety and the need for improved standards when it comes to the shipment of such material as Liquid propane.

MP Nathan Cullen has taken note
of the need for improved rail safety
measures as LPG plans move
ahead in the Northwest
Mr. Cullen has raised the topic in an interview this week with CFNR radio, noting that there is some risk profile to the line and there is a need for more equipment and training in the region.

The MP also take note as to how the current response standards, while acceptable by law,  are not acceptable for the communities along the rail line.

And while the Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP appears to have endorsed the prospect of LPG Terminal development in the past, comparing those projects more favourably than those of the LNG variety in recent years, he perhaps may be starting to hear some feedback on the topic of rail safety from residents along the CN Rail mainline across the Northwest.

That's a theme we made note of back in January when Mr. Cullen offered up his support for the Alta Gas project now under construction on Ridley Island.

And with two projects now in the development stage, residents in communities that straddle the railway may have additional concerns related to past derailments in the region, the most recent of which occurred earlier this month near Smithers.

December 19 -- CN train derails north of Smithers
December 11 -- Bulkley Canyon train corridor reopened
December 8 -- CN Train derailed near Bulkley Canyon

Those incidents could add to the attention level given the prospect of an increased schedule of propane cars destined to pass through their towns in the future.

In their preview of the AltaGas terminal, the Alberta company which will be first to the finish line when it comes to Terminal development, estimated that they will have the capacity to handle up to 60 rail cars per day at their Prince Rupert facility.

That increased level of transit and whatever levels Pembina will ship through their communities when they develop their terminal, may see residents across the Northwest perhaps looking for the opportunity to become part of the discussion as the Prince Rupert terminal plans come together.

Work continues on the AltaGas Terminal project at Ridley Island,
one of two terminal projects in Prince Rupert

(photo from Alta Gas website)

You can learn more about the two LPG projects in Prince Rupert from our archive pages below.

AltaGas Terminal (Ridley Island)
Pembina Terminal (Watson Island)

As well, more items of interest related to CN Rail can be found here.

For a look at some of the themes from the MP's work at the House of Commons see our archive page here.

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