Merrickville-Wolford residents will soon be able to benefit from access to the most affordable and reliable energy source for their homes and businesses.
The Merrickville-Wolford Community Expansion Project (the Project) will enable Enbridge Gas to provide natural gas to the Village of Merrickville-Wolford residents on the north side of the Rideau River.
The Project is funded by $2.46 million from the Ontario Government’s Natural Gas Expansion Program, in addition to the system expansion surcharge (23 cents/m3 to be paid over a term of 40 years by all customers served by the Project).
To bring gas to Merrickville-Wolford, the following facilities will be required and are subject to Leave to Construct (LTC) approvals.
The Project will involve the installation of up to approximately 5 kilometers (km) of a combination steel and polyethylene natural gas distribution pipeline ranging from 2-inch to 4-inch. The proposed tie-in of the distribution system is located on the south side of the Rideau River (County Rd. 43). The proposed main would cross the river, bringing gas to the north and extending along Heritage Dr., W Broadway St., Mill St., and more.
Preliminary preferred route (PPR) and Alternate Routes (AR)
- The PPR will connect to the existing Enbridge Gas system just south of County Road 43 on Main Street East and runs west across the Rideau River.
- Three AR would connect to the existing system at St. Lawrence Street and Main Street East and run north across the Rideau River.
- All options would serve customers on the opposite side of the Rideau River. Please refer to the map to see the proposed routes and study areas for the Project.
- Should AR1 or AR2 be selected as the preferred route, a reinforcement section would be required connecting at the same location and running along Main Street East from Charlotte Street to St. Lawrence Street.
- The final pipeline route is determined based on Enbridge Gas’ current infrastructure in place as well as the results of the environmental assessment of the proposed routes.
- As this is a Community Expansion Project, the final route also considers servicing the largest number of potential customers.
- Final routing will be determined in consultation with Indigenous communities, stakeholders, and public input.
The preliminary proposed and alternate route(s) have been developed for the purposes of an assessment of potential environmental and socioeconomic impacts and do not represent the final project scope/design that will provide access to natural gas to end-use customers.
Enbridge Gas has hired Stantec, a third-party environmental consultant, to complete a detailed review of the proposed route in terms of the environmental and socio-economic impacts.
The study is being conducted in accordance with the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) Environmental Guidelines for the Location, Construction, and Operation of Hydrocarbon Projects and Facilities in Ontario, 8th Edition. Once the study is complete, Enbridge may apply to the OEB for approval to construct the Project, otherwise identified as a Leave To Construct (LTC).
Enbridge Gas is working in many project areas across Ontario to prepare for future natural gas community expansion projects as part of the Ontario Government’s Natural Gas Expansion Program. Area residents may see work being conducted by Enbridge Gas employees, or contractors working on our behalf with crews completing soil sampling, land surveying, test digs and holding field meetings, which are all activities that help inform our Project routes and timelines for construction. This pre-work is ongoing, and area residents may occasionally notice equipment in operation, and some noise. Enbridge Gas apologizes for any inconvenience this might cause. All employees and contractors carry identification at all times.
- Enbridge Gas is committed to the health and safety of the public and its employees.
- Following the Virtual Information Session, a copy of the materials will be available at solutions.ca/MerrickvilleWolfordEA/ website.
- The purpose of the Virtual Information Session is to consult with Indigenous communities, the public and regulatory authorities regarding the proposed project, potential routes, and impacts. The Virtual Information Session also provides an opportunity for individuals to ask any questions and provide comments to representatives from Enbridge and Stantec.
The tasks and timelines for the project are presented below:
|Task||Undertakings||Proposed Timeline / Date|
|Selection of the new location for the pipeline||Enbridge Gas assessment of current and future network demand. System analysis and network design confirmed.||July 2023|
|Public consultation||Meetings and / or correspondence with indigenous communities, provincial and municipal representatives and agencies, and other key stakeholders||August 2023|
|Receive input from stakeholders to influence the environmental report||October 2023|
|Preparation of the environmental report||Prepare the draft Environmental Report based on collected data. Report includes impact assessment and mitigation recommendations.||Q1 2024|
|Circulation to Ontario Pipelines Coordinating Committee (OPCC)||
Enbridge Gas to file draft Environmental Report with the OPCC and Indigenous communities.
The purpose of the OPCC is to coordinate the Ontario government review of facilities projects in Ontario requiring approval from the OEB.
|OEB leave to construct application||Enbridge Gas to file a leave to construct application with the OEB||Q2 2024
|Notice of application||OEB issues the notice of application||Q1 2025|
|Potential construction start||Begin construction activities pending receipt of all permit and approvals.||Q1 2025|
|Potential construction finish||Construction completion including remediation activities.||Q2 2026|
Indigenous and community engagement
For this Project, the collective input from Indigenous communities, government agencies, municipalities, stakeholders, the public and landowners play an integral role in the route and site selection process.
Prior to construction, public input is obtained to ensure that the community is advised of the proposed project, and to involve the public in the decision-making process. Public consultation is a key component of the environmental report.
By providing the public with an opportunity to receive information about the project, the consultation program helps identify and address stakeholder concerns, and have meaningful participation into the project review and development process.
Public input from the virtual and in-person information sessions will be used to help finalize the project and mitigation plans to be implemented during construction.
Once the leave to construct (LTC) application is made to the OEB, any party with an interest in the Project, including members of the public, has an opportunity to participate in the process.
The notice of study commencement and in-person information session for the project will appear in Smith’s Falls Record News and Kemptville Advance on Aug. 24 and 31, 2023.
Indigenous consultation and stakeholder engagement is an important part of this study. Members of Indigenous communities, the public, regulatory agencies, and other stakeholders were invited to attend the Information Session to review the project and provide comments. The in-person information session will be held as follows:
Venue: Merrickville Memorial Community Recreation Centre, 106 Read Street, Merrickville, ON. K0G 1N0
Date: Sept. 6, 2023
Time: 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
The virtual information session will be available from Sept. 4, 2023, till Sept. 17, 2023 at solutions.ca/MerrickvilleWolfordEA/ website.
If you are unable to attend the in-person information session or log onto the virtual information session, hard copies of the information session material (including presentation boards, transcript, and questionnaire) will be available for in-person viewing at the following locations:
- Village of Merrickville-Wolford Municipal Office – 317 Brock St. West, Merrickville, ON K0G 1N0
- Merrickville Public Library – 446 Main St. West, Merrickville, ON K0G 1N0
We will seek feedback and comments on the proposed project until Oct. 3, 2023. Comments received up to and including Oct. 3, 2023 will be included in the environmental report for the project and comments received after this date will still be considered and included, as required, during the Project planning stages.
We want to hear from you!
For matters related to the environmental assessment, contact:
Lead Planner/Project Manager,
Stantec Consulting Ltd.,
Enbridge Gas Inc.