TransCanada Corporation and ABB announced today they have signed an agreement that will see ABB deliver a number of multi-million dollar electrical houses to secure power distribution for pump stations along the Energy East Pipeline.
At least 22 electrical houses are expected to be manufactured at a new production facility in the greater Montreal region. The agreement to manufacture the "e-houses" is anticipated to create up to 120 jobs in Québec and a further 90 spin-off jobs outside of the greater Montreal area. The order is conditional on TransCanada receiving regulatory approvals for the construction of the project.
"This agreement demonstrates our ongoing commitment to hire local suppliers to safely build this piece of national energy infrastructure and support job creation in Québec," said John Soini, president, Energy East Pipeline Project.
"ABB has a more than 60 year history of e-house innovation. We are pleased to have been able to work closely with TransCanada on an innovative, integrated e-house concept with a much smaller footprint," said Nathalie Pilon, ABB Canada managing director, in a release.
E-houses are prefabricated, modular, outdoor enclosures that house critical electrical and automation equipment required to power pump stations, ensuring safe and GHG-efficient operations. The e-houses have been custom-designed to TransCanada's requirements, with a compact design to minimize the impact on the local environment. The e-houses have a lifetime of more than 30 years and they have been specified to withstand extreme cold and snow conditions. Pump stations produce the pressure needed to transport crude oil through pipelines.
"We are already very active in Québec, spending $100 million in contracts with more than 250 suppliers over the last three years alone," added Soini. "This includes $25 million in service contracts in preparation of the project. We look forward to continuing to work closely with Québec suppliers as we develop the project and will work to develop further opportunities.
The Conference Board of Canada concluded, the multi-billion dollar Energy East project would create over 3,000 jobs each year in Québec during the nine years of planning and construction for the pipeline, along with $972 million in tax revenue for the province. When the pipeline goes into service, total tax revenues for Québec would be $1.2 billion for the first 20 years of its operation.
Soini points out that while the economic benefits of the project are important, TransCanada's main focus is ensuring that the Energy East pipeline will operate safely.
"Pipelines remain the safest way of transporting the oil Québec relies on every day," concluded Soini. "Pipelines use a lot less energy than diesel powered trains or trucks because they operate using electricity, creating a significantly lower carbon footprint. Energy East will create the capacity to displace the equivalent of 1,570 rail cars of crude oil per day to Eastern Canada."
Last month, Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre announced his city's official opposition to the project, saying the potential risks outweigh its possible economic benefits to communities.