April 20, 2004
"This is another significant step forward in our effort to commercialize our North Slope gas," Murkowski said. "TransCanada holds federal authorizations including the right-of-way lease to construct the line through Alaska, as well as the right to build the line through Canada. TransCanada is clearly one key part of the equation for the project. We look forward to taking action on its state right-of-way application, as well as entering into negotiations with TransCanada under the Stranded Gas Act."
Once a right-of-way lease has been issued by the state, and commercial arrangements for the project are adequate to support its financing, TransCanada has indicated it would be prepared to convey the right-of-way lease to the entity that would become the commercial developer of the project in Alaska. That entity would need to enter into an exclusive interconnection agreement with TransCanada to connect to its pipeline system at the Alaska/Yukon border.
TransCanada has indicated its willingness to assume leadership of the Alaska segment of the project as an independent pipeline sponsor. In the MOU, the state and TransCanada recognize the critical importance of the state's timely resolution with the North Slope producers of upstream issues related to the project.
TransCanada also has agreed in the MOU to reimburse the State of Alaska the costs associated with processing the right-of-way agreement, as well as to reimburse up to $1.5 million in processing costs associated with the Stranded Gas Act application. TransCanada has also indicated a willingness to accept Alaska partners in the development of the natural gas pipeline project.
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