MacKenzie Pipeline one step closer

Backers of a proposed natural gas pipeline down the Mackenzie Valley in the Northwest Territories have received some good news.

Imperial Oil has worked out a tentative deal on land access with the one remaining aboriginal stake holder not yet on board. The deal still has to be ratified by Dehcho First Nation communities, which cover about 40 per cent of the pipeline’s route, in the southwest corner of the terriroties.

It would run approximately 1,200 kilometres, from the MacKenzie Delta, all the way to north-western Alberta. If approved the agreement would be a major step forward for the 16 million dollar project which has been mired in regulatory hearings for years.

However, a ratified deal still wouldn’t guarantee the First nation would join the consortium of aboriginal groups hoping to take one-third ownership in the project.