AN agency created to train aboriginal people to work on a planned natural gas pipeline to feed a liquefied natural gas plant at Kitimat has received a cash infusion from the federal government.
The PTP ASEP (Pacific Trail Pipeline Aboriginal Skills Employment Partnership) Training Society had already received federal training monies to train people to work on the pipeline but that effort was delayed when anticipated construction starts for both the pipeline and accompanying LNG project, called Kitimat LNG, were put off.
The new federal money, as much as $6.1 million, was announced this morning by federal employment minister Jason Kenney during a visit to Terrace.
It’s to be used for broader aboriginal training for energy and other projects and not strictly limited to activity surrounding the Pacific Trail Pipeline or Kitimat LNG.
PTP ASEP had already been branching out to provide general construction-related and other training.
Together with private sector companies, the training society is now expected to train as many as 780 aboriginal people in such skilled trades as welding, electrical work and pipefitting.
“Our government is helping aboriginal people get the skills and training they need to secure meaningful employment and build better futures for themselves and their families,” said Kenney today.
The training society is made up of the 15 First Nations who live along the length of the planned Pacific Trails Pipeline, including the Kitselas First Nation just outside of Terrace.
In the past it has also received financial assistance from Pacific Trails Pipeline which is owned by Chevron, Apache and the 15 First Nations who make up the training society.
Natural gas for the pipeline will come from northeastern B.C.
Both the pipeline and LNG plant have received full environmental and regulatory approval and Asian customers are now being sought.
Kitselas councillor Judy Gerow, executive director of PTP ASEP Diane Collins, former Liberal interim leader Bob Rae, who is now the chairman of the board for the FN (PTP) Group Limited Partnership, and Alan Dunlop, representing Chevron, Apache and Kitimat LNG, were also on hand for the announcement.