(Updated) Northern B.C. gas line explosion prompts HSPP shutdown

Howe Sound Pulp and Paper

Paper Excellence says work got underway Friday to resume operations at Howe Sound Pulp and Paper (HSPP) after an explosion and fire that damaged an Enbridge natural gas pipeline through northern B.C.  led to a shutdown at HSPP.

The incident impacted the supply of gas to the south coast, and Fortis BC has been asking customers to cut back on their use.

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HSPP uses natural gas for its lime kiln, and needed to shutdown according to Kathy Cloutier of  Paper Excellence, HSPP's parent company.

Enbridge received approval from the National Energy Board on Wednesday night to restart a smaller line running beside the damaged pipeline. The company said re-pressurizing the line and returning it to service is a “multi-hour process.”

“Once this process is safely completed, some much-need capacity will be restored for our customers,” the company said in a statement.

Gas is expected to remain in short supply, however, until the larger pipeline is repaired.

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