Island Gas Connector

IGC map thumbnail

Click to enlarge. Please note the map shows a preliminary route that has not been finalized and is subject to stakeholder input. 

Williams, the owner and operator of Northwest Pipeline, is working with Vancouver, British Columbia-based Steelhead LNG  to explore building and operating the Island Gas Connector (IGC) Project – a natural gas pipeline to serve a proposed liquefied natural gas facility on southern Vancouver Island, British Columbia (BC) called Malahat LNG. The proposed IGC Project would begin in the U.S. and end in Canada.

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Williams and Steelhead LNG have signed a pre-construction agreement to design and pursue regulatory approvals of a proposed natural gas pipeline  to Steelhead LNG’s proposed Malahat LNG facility, a floating natural gas liquefaction and export facility located on the shoreline of Malahat Nation-owned land approximately 8 kilometers (5 miles) south of Mill Bay, BC.

The IGC Project would deliver Canadian natural gas supplies from Sumas, Washington to Cherry Point, Washington. From there, it would travel approximately 75 kilometers (47 miles) across the Salish Sea, landing at the proposed Malahat LNG facility on the east coast of Vancouver Island, BC.

In addition to Malahat LNG, Steelhead LNG is also exploring the development of Sarita LNG, a proposed LNG facility with the Huu-ay-aht First Nations at Sarita Bay, BC, on the west coast of Vancouver Island 75 kilometers (47 miles) southwest of Port Alberni, BC. While the first phase of the IGC Project would be constructed to supply the Malahat LNG facility, the Project would be designed to meet the potential capacity requirements of Steelhead LNG’s two proposed LNG facilities, providing potential shared infrastructure benefits.

An additional independent pipeline from the east coast of Vancouver Island to Sarita Bay would be required to deliver supply to Sarita LNG. That proposed pipeline would be designed, owned and operated by a separate Canadian entity and subject to its own regulatory approval process.


Northwest Pipeline is a major transporter of natural gas to the Pacific Northwest and Intermountain Region. The Northwest Pipeline system has changed significantly since its beginnings nearly 60 years ago. The original 1,414-kilometer (1,500-mile) pipeline is now a 6,347-kilometer (4,000-mile) bi-directional transmission system crossing the states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado. Northwest’s bi-directional system provides access to British Columbia, Alberta, Rocky Mountain and San Juan Basin natural gas supplies.

Regulatory Process and Timeline

Williams’ Northwest Pipeline would design, construct and operate the pipeline. As an international pipeline, the Island Gas Connector Project requires the approval of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in the United States and the National Energy Board (NEB) in Canada. In addition there would be various local, state/provincial and federal permits required.

The proposed IGC Project will undergo rigorous regulatory, environmental and technical assessments.

Canadian Regulatory Process

The Project team is preparing the Project description to be submitted to the NEB in spring of 2016 for the Canadian portion of the proposed pipeline. Following this submission, the Project team will prepare a Facilities Application to submit to the NEB.

USA Regulatory Process

The first step in developing the FERC certificate application is initiation of the FERC pre-filing process. This FERC pre-filing process is intended to solicit early input from citizens, governmental entities and other interested parties to identify and address issues with potential facility locations.

Community Engagement and Consultation   

As part of the proposed Project, both Steelhead LNG and Williams will conduct an extensive consultation and engagement process. The companies respect and understand communities have an important role to play in decisions that affect them and are committed to ongoing and open engagement with Canadian Aboriginal groups, United States Tribes, landowners, local stakeholders and communities.

Public open houses and other opportunities for input will be hosted in the affected areas to formally introduce the proposal to the public and solicit feedback. Public input is important to us and can help shape the final Project scope.

Environmental, technical and engineering studies will be initiated as part of the regulatory processes.

The Proposed Route

The IGC Project is a proposed independent pipeline to deliver Canadian natural gas 52.8 kilometers (33 miles) from Williams’ Northwest interconnect with Spectra Energy’s BC Pipeline system at Sumas, Washington to Cherry Point, Washington. From there, it would travel 75 kilometers (47 miles) subsea, landing directly at the proposed Malahat LNG Project on the east coast of Vancouver Island.

The anticipated in-service date for the project is November 2020.

About Williams and Steelhead LNG

Williams is an Oklahoma-based energy infrastructure company focused on connecting North America’s significant hydrocarbon resource plays to growing markets for natural gas, natural gas liquids and olefins. Williams’ operations span from the deep water Gulf of Mexico to the Canadian oil sands. Through its Northwest system, Williams has safely maintained and operated natural gas pipelines in the Pacific Northwest, Intermountain and Four Corners regions for nearly 60 years.

Steelhead LNG is a Vancouver-based energy company focused on LNG project development in British Columbia. The company’s experience includes guiding some of the world’s leading energy companies and projects, with commercial and technical expertise that spans the entire LNG value chain. From project concept to product delivery, Steelhead LNG is committed to responsibly creating and delivering value for the communities, suppliers and customers it serves.

Contact Us

We want to hear from you. If you have questions about the proposed IGC Project, please contact us. We welcome your suggestions and feedback about the proposed Project. Understanding and addressing your concerns are vital to its success.

Our project team is based in Washington State and British Columbia (Vancouver and Victoria).

USA: 1.866.670.9455 or email

Canada: 1.855.832.3123 or email

Mailing Address in U.S.
Hannegan Business Park
873 Hinotes Court
Building A, Suite 1
Lynden, WA 98264

To find out more about the proposed Malahat LNG project and Steelhead LNG, visit

Community Open House

On Sept. 16, 2015, the proposed Malahat LNG project and the Island Gas Connector project were introduced to the community at an open house at the Malahat Kwunew Kwasun Cultural Resource Centre in Mill Bay, B.C. You many review the open house materials provided below:

Project Overview

About Williams

Pipeline Safety

Building Subsea Pipelines

Environmental Commitment

Outreach and Engagement

NEB Overview and Process