The now defunct Kotaneelee gas plant in southeast Yukon. (Mike Thomas/Yukon News)

Tender for Kotaneelee gas well abandonment cancelled

YG refuses to release details about why 2 bids fell short

The Yukon government has cancelled a tender to find someone to seal off an abandoned gas well in the Kotaneelee gas fields.

Officials say none of the companies that applied complied with requirements of the request for proposals, but the government is refusing to provide any details.

Derek Fraser, director of the Yukon’s oil and gas branch, said the two companies that responded to the request for proposals were “not compliant.”

“The procurement process requires that the bids submitted adhere to the rules and specifications set out in the request for proposals tender and the bids that aren’t compliant are rejected,” he said.

Fraser directed all questions about what specifically was wrong with the original bids to the Department of Highways and Public Works procurement office.

But the HPW also refused to give details. Department spokesperson Doris Wurfbaum said bids might be rejected if companies fill out the wrong form, don’t submit the required bond or don’t include all the required information, for example.

“We don’t disclose information about non-compliant bids to protect the integrity of the process and for legal procurements reasons,” she said.

Wurfbaum said companies that lose out can request a de-brief with the department to get more details.

The original tender stated that work to abandon and seal the government’s well was expected to happen between July 16 and Aug. 3.

Fraser said the goal is still to get the work done this season. He said department officials are still deciding what their next step is going to be.

“We’re looking at our options. Those are looking like either re-tendering the request for proposals or awarding a sole-source contract,” he said.

“Timing is a major factor in our assessment of what our next steps will be because we’re still targeting to get the well abandonment done this season.”

If the project goes back out to tender the government will probably hold an information session with contractors that are interested to walk them through the process.

The Yukon government took over ownership of the well last year after its previous owner went insolvent.

Contact Ashley Joannou at ashleyj@yukon-news.com

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