Mark Asquith is an environmental consultant helping to continuously monitor a Coastal GasLink water crossing site to make sure the water quality stays pristine.

How Coastal GasLink protects the environment when crossing waterways

At Coastal GasLink, we recognize that water is a highly valued resource and how we navigate water crossings matters to local and Indigenous communities. The project’s 670-kilometre route crosses several bodies of water and we approach each one with the highest environmental and safety standards to prevent adverse impacts on the environment.

“We are held to what I would consider a platinum standard. Health and safety and environment are our two major targets out here,” says Colby Smith, an Assistant Construction Manager working at the Kitimat River crossing, where pipe was successfully installed this summer.

Our approach to water body crossings is a multi-faceted process that involves rigorous evaluation of the best available crossing methods to ensure each water body and habitat receives the appropriate protections. Prior to construction at any water crossing, environmental assessments take place including studies of the aquatic environment – such as water flow, bank stability, the quantity and quality of fish habitat, wildlife and vegetation. Information gathered through the assessments, along with regulatory requirements and constructability allows for the selection of the most appropriate pipeline installation method.

Two of the methods Coastal GasLink uses along our route are called Direct Pipe Installation (DPI) and Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) which are both forms of trenchless crossings.

Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) is one of the ways Coastal GasLink safely crosses water bodies by going deep beneath it.

Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) is one of the ways Coastal GasLink safely crosses water bodies by going deep beneath it.

HDD uses a specialized drilling rig to bore a path under the water body, progressively enlarging the bore hole until the pipeline is pulled through to the other side. DPI is a recent addition to the trenchless crossing industry and involves both digging the tunnel and installing the pipe at the same time which minimizes disruption to instream activities, the surrounding environment, fish habitat and the riverbank.

We recognize the importance of fish and fish habitat to the communities upstream and downstream of where we conduct water crossings. That’s why we have implemented stringent measures such as avoiding disturbance of important habitats during key times, such as spawning.

During construction, we monitor rivers and streams to make sure our plans are effective. This means monitoring both the stream and the surrounding riverbanks to understand if the measures we’ve put in place to reduce impacts are working, and to determine if changes are needed. If the monitoring shows any unusual results, we’ll address it immediately. This could mean installing erosion/sediment control barriers; temporarily stopping work until the water quality returns to acceptable levels; or re-scheduling work until conditions are more favourable.

“It’s about doing things safe, with quality and being really proud of it when you’re done. Something you can talk about with your friends and colleagues that we did it right,” says M.J. Zimmerman, Construction Manager.

Visit CoastalGasLink.com to learn more about water crossings how Coastal GasLink is taking extreme care to protect our rivers and streams.

energy sector

Just Posted

Amanda Parsons, a registered nurse on staff at the Northwood Care facility, prepares a dose of the Moderna vaccine in Halifax on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. Almost two in three Canadians surveyed recently said they trust COVID-19 vaccines to be both safe and effective. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Northern Health to open 30 COVID vaccine clinics for oldest residents, Indigenous seniors

Health authority says it plans to vaccinate nearly 15,000 people in Phase Two

(Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Murder charge laid in February 2020 stabbing death of Smithers man

Michael Egenolf is charged with the second-degree murder of Brodie Cumiskey

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

The village is hoping for a start date in early April with completion as soon as possible. (Granisle Village website photo/Houston Today)
Granisle’s curling rink to receive a facelift

Receives a $362,148 provincial grant

A huge milestone for Granisle to reach 50 years, said Mayor. (Village of Granisle photo/Lakes District News)
Granisle’s 50 years anniversary celebration postponed

The celebrations are now set to be held in 2022

Elvira D’Angelo, 92, waits to receive her COVID-19 vaccination shot at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, March 7, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
‘It’s been a good week’: Tam hopeful on vaccines as pandemic anniversary nears

Tam says the addition of two new vaccines will help Canadians get immunized faster

Const. Allan Young. Photo: Abbotsford Police Department
Manslaughter charge laid in Nelson death of Abbotsford police officer

Allan Young died after an incident in downtown Nelson last summer

(The Canadian Press)
‘Worse than Sept. 11, SARS and financial crisis combined’: Tourism industry in crisis

Travel services saw the biggest drop in active businesses with 31 per cent fewer firms operating

Pictures and notes in from friends and classmates make up a memorial in support and memory of Aubrey Berry, 4, and her sister Chloe, 6, during a vigil held at Willows Beach in Oak Bay, B.C., on December 30, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Mother of slain daughters supports recent changes to Canada’s Divorce Act

Sarah Cotton-Elliott said she believed her children took a back seat to arranging equal parenting

Victoria man Brett Andersen is asking for people’s help to secure him one of eight free tickets to the moon. (Screenshot/@brettandersen Instagram)
Victoria man wants your help securing a free ticket to the moon

Japanese billionaire offering eight people a trip to the moon

The Conservation Officers Service is warning aquarium users after invasive and potentially destructive mussels were found in moss balls from a pet store. (BC Conservation Officers Service/Facebook)
Aquarium users in B.C. warned after invasive mussels found at pet store

Conservation officers were told the mussels were found in a moss ball from a Terrace pet store.

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Donald Alan Sweet was once an all star CFL kicker who played for the Montreal Alouettes and Montreal Concordes over a 13-year career. Photo courtesy of Mission RCMP.
Ex-B.C. teacher who was CFL kicker charged with assault, sexual crimes against former students

Donald Sweet taught in Mission School District for 10 years, investigators seek further witnesses

Most Read