December 13, 2004
Controlled Shutdown at TransGas
Asquith Cavern Project
Responding to a request from the
Saskatchewan Watershed Authority, TransGas has initiated
a controlled shutdown of a project to construct natural
gas storage caverns near the town of Asquith.
TransGas was using ground water from the
Tyner Valley Aquifer to dissolve underground salt
deposits, creating natural gas storage capacity west of
Saskatoon. Some residents of the area have expressed
concern that the project was affecting private wells
some distance away from the project site and in
"We have listened to the concerns of
local residents," Saskatchewan Watershed Authority
Minister David Forbes said. "Now, it needs to be
determined if any water supply problems are due to the
TransGas project or by some other cause. We will make a
final determination based on the science."
The temporary shutdown will allow the
Authority to gather and examine additional data to
ensure that the project is sustainable in terms of water
supply, and to examine any potential impacts on water
quality. At the Authority's direction, TransGas has
established several additional piezometers or
Water levels will be monitored to
determine the magnitude and rate of water level recovery
in the Tyner Valley Aquifer, as well as any time lags in
recovery in wells further from the project site.
Potential effects on the Tessier Aquifer and on shallow
aquifers will also be monitored.
The Authority will receive the data
throughout the shutdown, and will reassess the water-use
license issued to TransGas based on the results. Local
citizens have been consulted in determining the basis
for the additional research and will be included as the
assessment is performed.
For More Information, Contact:
Nolan Shaheen, P.Eng., P.Geo.
Saskatchewan Watershed Authority
Phone: (306) 694-3963
Cell: (306) 230-1632