We may have a new option when it comes to getting bitumen to tide waters.
Financing is nearing completion with Canada's federal government for G7G's approximately $27B Alberta to Alaska rail project - an undertaking that would see local product from Northern Alberta's Fort McMurray area travel to the US state.
While the project has been in the works for several years, the company has recently been meeting with Indigenous communities in Alaska along with First Nations in Canada rallying support.
What can we expect when it comes to job creation?
According to Partner & CEO Matt Vickers, “We’re talking anywhere from 50,000 to 70,000 jobs for a four to five year period during construction and 3,500 permanent jobs.”
He went on to tell Mix News that now that they’ve nearly gotten the support and finances they need, they can focus on constructing this railway which will do wonders for the economy.
Key to the project is G7G is a 'twinning' of the tracks – thus allowing more bitumen to be shipped off daily. Vickers says they could "easily send between four and five million barrels per day from Fort McMurray".
Environmentally speaking, “It will be the greenest, safest rail ever built because we’re not like a 100 years ago building rail, it’s today with today’s modern technology.”
While 50 per cent of equity is expected to be owned by Indigenous communities, the McKay Métis aren’t supporting the current scope of the project.
“We’ve seen some projections of where they would like the railway to go and it goes directly through our territory,” President of the McKay Métis Ron Quintal stated.
His primary concern circled around the transportation method as rail doesn’t have the greatest track records.
“I’d be honoured and more than happy to go and meet with them directly and share the project, how it’s going to work, how and why it’s going to be the greenest, safest rail ever built, and how the benefits will roll out to the impacted communities.”
If construction starts next year, completion of the rail is expected to be finished as early as 2023.