PanCandian Files Deep Panuke Regulatory Applications

PanCanadian Energy Corporation filed regulatory applications for development of the company's 100-percent-owned Deep Panuke natural gas project off the coast of Nova Scotia.

The filings, made to the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board and the National Energy Board, are required steps in the regulatory approval process for development of Deep Panuke, located approximately 250 kilometers east of Halifax, Nova Scotia, on the Scotian Shelf.

Topics to be addressed by the regulators include the technical aspects of the project, economic benefits, potential environmental and socio-economic impacts, and public consultation. Regulatory hearings for the project are expected to begin in the fall of 2002, with a decision in the first quarter of 2003. PanCanadian will decide whether to proceed with construction of Deep Panuke facilities once regulatory approval is received.

Total anticipated capital investment in the project is expected to be approximately $1.1 billion, with annual operating expenses in the range of $60 million. Based on current assumptions, commercial production could begin in 2005. The project is estimated to recover reserves of natural gas approaching one trillion cubic feet over an expected 11.5-year production life of the field.

"With Deep Panuke, we have the most promising development project on the East Coast in recent years," said Dave Boone, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. "It is integral to PanCanadian's future growth strategy, and it represents a key platform for development throughout the East Coast. This is a positive day for our company and for the people of Nova Scotia."

The project involves the production and processing of raw gas offshore, the transport of market-ready gas via sub-sea pipeline to Goldboro, Nova Scotia, and an interconnection with the Maritimes and Northeast Pipeline (M&NP) main transmission pipeline.

Offshore components for PanCanadian's Deep Panuke project are expected to include three new offshore platforms (a wellhead platform, production platform and accommodation platform) with pedestrian bridges connecting the platforms:

  • the wellhead platform will be used for dry wellheads, risers for the sub-sea flow lines, and production and test manifolds;
  • the production platform will contain all power generation and processing equipment for the raw gas; and
  • the accommodation platform will include living quarters and a helicopter deck with refueling facilities, along with necessary utilities, control room and associated safety systems.

Approximately 175 kilometers of 24-inch sub-sea pipeline will transport natural gas from the platform to landfall at Goldboro, N.S. The onshore facilities for Deep Panuke will include:

  • a pipeline to connect Deep Panuke to existing M&NP facilities;
  • metering and quality monitoring equipment;
  • pressure control facilities;
  • SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition) facilities; and
  • a small building for metering and SCADA.

Documents filed with the CNSOPB include:

  • a project summary;
  • a development plan containing technical information on how Deep Panuke will be developed;
  • a Canada-Nova Scotia benefits plan;
  • an environmental impact statement;
  • a socio-economic impact statement; and
  • a public consultation report.

Also filed with the NEB in Calgary, was an application for the project's pipeline. A draft Comprehensive Study Report was filed as well, with the CNSOPB. The environmental review will be coordinated by the CNSOPB, which has been designated as the lead responsible authority for the environmental review under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. Larry LeBlanc, Vice President, East Coast Operations, noted, "The regulatory approval process for Deep Panuke will be a key focus for us in 2002. We're pleased that the project will offer important new job creation, contracting opportunities, and broad economic stimulus for Nova Scotia." All filed documents are available from the CNSOPB, from the Deep Panuke project office in Halifax, at public libraries across Nova Scotia and on the PanCanadian Web site.