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Oil Project Sending Local Bitumen to Alaska Expected To Start Construction in 2019

Fort McMurray, AB, Canada / MIX 103.7

A new way of getting bitumen to tide waters could see construction start late next year.

Finances are nearly complete with the federal government for G7G’s roughly $27 billion Alberta to Alaska Railway project which would see local product from Fort McMurray travel to the American state.

It has been in the works for several years as the company has met with Indigenous communities in Alaska, as well as First Nations in Canada, getting their support for the project

Partner and CEO Matt Vickers tells Mix News 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.

“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.”

Instead of constructing one set of rails, G7G is planning to twin 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.

Meanwhile, Vickers says this railway will be quite different compared to others.

“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.”

Also, 50 per cent of equity is expected to be owned by Indigenous communities.

Despite this, 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,” said Ron Quintal, President of the McKay Métis.

He adds they’re mostly concerned about 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 in 2019, the rail is expected to be finished by 2023 or 2024.

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