The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Alaska District issued a permit today under the Clean Water Act for ConocoPhillips Alaska’s CD-5 Alpine satellite development project.
The corps permitted the aboveground pipeline that ConocoPhillips requested over the Nigliq Channel of the Colville River, saying that in this situation the aboveground line presented a lesser risk of damage to the aquatic ecosystem.
The project has been on hold because the corps previously denied permits for a road and pipeline bridge over the Nigliq Channel, based on objections by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Environmental Protection Agency, and required a buried crossing of the channel.
Movement on the issue was signaled Dec. 5 when the U.S. Department of the Interior said Fish and Wildlife and EPA had reached an agreement in principle with ConocoPhillips on construction of a pipeline and bridge over the Nigliq Channel “so long as the permit application includes conditions that reflect agreements reached” among ConocoPhillips, Fish and Wildlife and EPA.
The corps said then that it expected to complete its work by the end of the month.
“ConocoPhillips is pleased that the Corps of Engineers granted the Section 404 permit” for the CD0-5 Alpine satellite, ConocoPhillips Alaska spokeswoman Natalie Lowman told Petroleum News in an email today.
“Over the coming months, we plan to evaluate and incorporate the terms of the permit into our project plan as we attempt to progress to full sanctioning in the coming year,” Lowman said.
The Corps said its CD-5 permit authorizes construction of a drill pad, six-mile long access road, four bridge crossings, two valve pads with access roads, and new pipeline support structures.”
The permit includes 22 special conditions, the corps said, “intended to minimize the impact to the environment within the Arctic Coastal Plain.”
See story in Dec. 25 issue, available online at 11 a.m., Friday, Dec. 23, at www.PetroleumNews.com