10/30/2014 10:15 EDT | Updated 12/30/2014 05:59 EST

TransCanada formally applies to NEB for Energy East pipeline approval

TransCanada has officially filed for government approval for the $12 billion Energy East pipeline project with the National Energy Board.

The company has submitted a formal application for the project, which would carry 1.1 million barrels per day of crude oil from Alberta eastward to refineries on Canada's East Coast.

Officials from the company were to appear at a press conference at 10:30 a.m. ET Thursday in Toronto to answer journalist questions on the project and the regulatory process that it now faces.

"Our application outlines how Energy East will be built and operated in a safe and environmentally responsible manner, while generating significant benefits for all Canadians," TransCanada president and CEO Russ Girling said.

The company says it has filed 30,000 pages worth of documents outlining the project which, if completed, will take oil for more than 4,600 kilometres across six Canadian provinces.

Already in place

About two-thirds of the pipeline is already essentially in place — the project would involve expanding and extending a series of existing pipelines.

Backers of the project say it will create jobs and economic growth while cementing Canada's status as an energy independent oil superpower.

But much like other superpipelines, including Kinder Morgan, Northern Gateway and TransCanada's own Keystone XL, the porject faces opposition from local environmental and native groups who say any such project is an environmental accident waiting to happen.