Reconsidering marine shipping impacts of the project
In August 2018, the Federal Court of Appeal set aside the government’s original approval of the Trans Mountain Expansion (TMX) project.
Per the Court’s guidance that further review project-related marine shipping impacts was required, the National Energy Board (NEB) was instructed to reconsider its recommendations under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act 2012, taking into account the effects of project-related marine shipping and potential impacts on species at risk.
On February 22, 2019, the NEB delivered its Reconsideration Report. The report recommended that the TMX project is in the Canadian public interest and should be approved subject to 156 conditions and 16 recommendations.
How we contributed:
1. Submitted evidence-based information to the NEB detailing federal research and actions to restore and protect marine ecosystems and habitats and enhance marine safety and navigation. This includes recent government actions to protect the Southern Resident Killer Whales and to implement the Oceans Protection Plan.
2. Communicated with all Indigenous groups potentially impacted by the project to inform them of our intent to rely on the NEB process, to the extent possible, to fulfil our duty to consult. This was supported by Phase III consultations.
3. Attended all of the Oral Traditional Evidence hearings conducted by the NEB.
4. Appointed a marine technical advisor to the NEB to make sure that it has the expertise and capacity to deliver the best advice on marine shipping.
The NEB Reconsideration Report informed the government’s Phase III Indigenous consultation process by providing information to Indigenous groups that have raised concerns around marine shipping effects and the conditions or proponent commitments in place to avoid, mitigate or accommodate those concerns.
As required by law, the Reconsideration Report was provided to the Governor-in-Council to inform its decision on whether to approve the project.
What are the next steps?
The NEB will impose 156 conditions on the project and has made 16 new recommendations to the Government of Canada. The recommendations relate to matters that fall outside of the NEB’s regulatory mandate but within the authority of the Government of Canada.
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