The design and construction of a northern pipeline differs in many respects from southern pipelines. The remoteness and environmental sensitivity of the region are only two commonly acknowledged issues. The geotechnical aspects of a pipeline in continuous permafrost or discontinuous permafrost are also different from pipeline designs in more temperate regions. There have been several successfully constructed and operated pipelines in northern Canada and Alaska. These facilities provide an important precedence for the design and construction of future northern pipelines. The geotechnical aspects covered in this paper will include the differences in oil and gas pipelines relative to geothermal impact on the ground, the importance of route selection and terrain analysis, protection of permafrost, slopes design, frost heave and thaw settlement impact and mitigation, and a discussion of some of the lessons learned from previous projects.

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