Columbus, Neb.– Nebraska Public Power District is moving forward in the next step of a process to provide electric service to a proposed international oil pipeline owned and operated by Keystone, a United States subsidiary of Canadian-based TransCanada.
To supply electrical service for the proposed pipeline, NPPD must construct a new, nine-mile, transmission line segment near the Clarks/Central City areas, a 37-mile line segment near the Ericson/Petersburg areas and a 28-mile line segment in the O’Neill/Stuart areas. Ultimately, the new transmission lines and associated substation facilities will connect to NPPD wholesale customer utilities that will, in turn, serve the pipeline directly. The scheduled in-service date for these lines is November 2012.
In order to meet this in-service date, NPPD must continue with pre-construction activities for transmission lines needed to serve the pipeline such as procuring materials and supplies, acquiring easements from landowners, and clearing right-of-way.
“Completing a transmission line project takes several years from start to finish, so we are continuing to move forward and appreciate the cooperation we are receiving from landowners in each of the areas,” said Jedd Fischer, NPPD project manager.
NPPD has secured nearly all of the right-of-entry agreements needed from landowners along the proposed routes to complete initial field work such as environmental surveys, appraisal work and line engineering and design. The next step involves obtaining easements—perpetual agreements that allow NPPD to compensate landowners for the right to construct, operate and maintain the transmission lines.
As part of NPPD’s pre-construction activities, wholesale customer utilities in the respective areas will need to relocate some of their existing lower voltage power lines. Respective wholesale utility representatives will work directly with landowners in coordinating these moves. The local utilities in the respective areas for the three line projects include: Southern Power District in the Clarks/Central City area; Loup Valleys Rural Public Power District in the Ericson/Petersburg area and Niobrara Valley EMC and NPPD in the O’Neill area.
TransCanada is paying for the cost of all electric facilities required to serve its pipeline. This cost is estimated to be between $53 and $55 million.
Right-of-way activities are being coordinated out of NPPD’s field office in Minden, located at 528 N. Minden Avenue. To contact the office, call (308) 832-1208. A secondary field office has also been set up for right-of-way activities at NPPD’s retail office in O’Neill.