From: Reuters
Published January 4, 2008 05:34 PM

TransCanada proposes $26 bln Alaska pipeline

CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) - TransCanada Corp <TRP.TO>, the only company whose Alaska gas pipeline proposal has been deemed acceptable to the state, is planning a $26 billion project that would connect with its Alberta hub, a TransCanada spokeswoman said on Friday.

Under the proposal, TransCanada would build the Canadian portion of the immense line under the Northern Pipeline Act, three-decade-old legislation that the company believes gives it the exclusive right to construct such a pipeline, said TransCanada's Cecily Dobson.

"We look forward to working with the state for a successful conclusion of the process," Dobson said. "We'll follow the state's process as we move forward through the 60-day review and the submission for legislative approval."

TransCanada -- which has been vying to build a pipeline to tap North Slope gas reserves since the late 1970s -- was one of five bidders to submit proposals by early last month under the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act.

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Up until 2005, Alaska gas producers like BP Plc <BP.L> and rival pipeline firm Enbridge Inc <ENB.TO> had cajoled Ottawa to say whether TransCanada's plans still entitled it to the rights under the NPA or if there could be a competing bidder for the Canadian portion.

Little has been made public on the matter since.

Dobson said she had no information on whether TransCanada would seek to foot the entire bill itself or find partners.

The company has long proposed a connection for Alaska gas with its Alberta system, where supplies can be shipped on to Eastern Canada, the U.S. Midwest and Northeast, as well as to California.

"And that will be using the Northern Pipeline Act and our Yukon right of way," she said.

(Reporting by Jeffrey Jones; Editing by Rob Wilson)

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