updated 1/26/2011 1:47:36 PM ET 2011-01-26T18:47:36

CALGARY, Alberta, Jan. 26, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The National Energy Board (NEB or the Board) has awarded a total of $175,000 to six applicants to support their participation in the regulatory process for the proposed Vantage Pipeline Project.

Funding recipients are:

  • Western Region III and Eastern Region II Métis Nation
  • Chief Big Bear First Nation
  • Poundmaker Cree Nation #114, Lucky Man Cree Nation, Mosquito, Grizzly Bear's Head, Lean Man First Nation, and Little Pine First Nation
  • Siksika Nation
  • Pasqua First Nation
  • File Hills Qu'Appelle Tribal Council

This funding is being made available to help recipients review and comment on a project application to be submitted by the proponent, Vantage Pipeline Canada Inc. Funding must be used to prepare for and participate in the hearing process that will be announced by the Board at a later date.

An independent funding review committee reviewed the requests and provided recommendations on funding allocations. The committee's report, Allocation of Funds for Participation in the Public Hearing for the Vantage Pipeline Project, along with further information on the project, is available on the Board's website ( www.neb-one.gc.ca ) under Public Registries / Anticipated Applications.

The proposed Vantage Pipeline Project (Vantage Pipeline) is being designed to carry liquid ethane from a processing plant near Tioga, North Dakota, through Saskatchewan to a gathering system near Empress, Alberta. The Canadian portion of the Vantage Pipeline consists of approximately 575 km of pipeline and related facilities in Saskatchewan and three km in Alberta. Approximately 528 km of the proposed pipeline is along or adjacent to existing right-of-way. If the project is approved, construction is expected to begin in the first half of 2012, and be completed in late 2012.

The NEB is an independent federal regulator of several parts of Canada's energy industry. Its purpose is to regulate pipelines, energy development and trade in the Canadian public interest.

Please visit the NEB website for general information about the hearing process and how you can participate effectively. To access the information, go to www.neb-one.gc.ca , select Hearing and Information Session, and then click on Participate in a Public Hearing. This news release is also available on the Board's website under What's New!

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For further information:  Tara O'Donovan ( tara.odonovan@neb-one.gc.ca )

Communications Officer

Telephone: 403-299-3371

TTY (teletype): 1-800-632-1663

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