With little fanfare, the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project kicked off yesterday, just west of Edmonton.

Ian Anderson, who switched employers when the pipeline and its proposed expansion were sold to the federal government in 2018 for 4.5 billion dollars, repeated a vow yesterday to have expansion project pipe in the ground before Christmas.

He said the pipeline will take 30 to 36 months to build, which means it could be completed in the second half of 2022, but he declined to update the last cost estimate of 7.4 billion dollars.

Federal Minister of Natural Resources Seamus O’Regan said the event and the opening of the Canadian part of Enbridge’s Line 3 export pipeline last weekend make it a “good week” for Canada.

The expansion will nearly triple the 300 thousand-barrel-a-day capacity of the existing Trans Mountain pipeline, which carries crude oil and refined products from Edmonton to a terminal in Burnaby, B.C.

Story by Canadian Press.