Construction of the Enbridge Line 3 pipeline replacement project is officially underway. Premier Rachel Notley was in Hardisty Thursday to take part in a groundbreaking ceremony, although work started nine days ago.

The $5.3 billion project will replace the pipeline running between Enbridge’s existing Hardisty Terminal and Gretna, Manitoba on the Canada side. In the U.S., the pipeline running between Neche, North Dakota, and Enbridge’s existing Superior Station and Terminal Facility in Superior, Wisconsin will be replaced, costing $2.9 billion U.S.

Speaking at the construction site, Notley focused on job creation and environmental impacts.

“It is estimated Alberta alone will see over 9,200 direct and indirect jobs,” she says. “Jobs that are going to help families. Jobs that are going to add even more fuel to the economy and to the economic recovery that is now underway.”

“This pipeline, as with any new pipeline from Alberta, will not increase emissions from our Oil Sands,” she adds. “With this pipeline, combined with our work in Alberta, we have brought together effective climate action with the need to create good jobs for working people.”

The project was approved by the federal government on November 29, 2016. The total length of the pipeline replacement is 1,660 kilometres, which is expected to be in service by 2019, pending U.S. regulatory approvals.

Written by Angie Mellen, 106.1 The Goat