TransCanada files $15-billion NAFTA claim over U.S. rejection of Keystone pipeline

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NEB Announces Participants List and First Round of “Panel Sessions”.

June 22, 2016 Calgary, Alberta National Energy Board News Release | The National Energy Board (NEB) announced today that the funding available to eligible intervenors for the Energy East hearing has been doubled from $5 to $10 million – the largest amount ever provided through its Participant Funding Program. The NEB also released the list of participants, as well as the schedule and locations of the Panel sessions.

The NEB is committed to hearing from Canadians and in addition to the enhanced engagement opportunities announced last week, it has increased the amount available through its Participant Funding Program for the review of the Energy East and Eastern Mainline projects. Eligible intervenors who have not yet been awarded funding have until August 8, 2016, to apply.

After conducting a thorough examination, the Hearing Panel granted intervenor status to 337 applicants and commenter status to 271 applicants. Those not granted participation rights in the hearing process will be able to provide input in the review through expanded public engagement activities to be carried out by additional Board Members.

A total of 2,652 applications to participate in the Energy East and Eastern Mainline hearing were received by the NEB. Of those, over 100 were duplicates and approximately 1,450 were submissions of a form letter about climate change and upstream greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs), which will be the topic of an assessment conducted by Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC). The NEB is currently working with ECCC to find ways to enhance public participation in the review of the draft upstream GHGs assessment report.

The first phase of the hearing process will be Panel sessions, which will take place between August and December 2016 in 10 locations in New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta. The schedule can be found in the Direction to Participants. #4.

Participants will have the ability to provide feedback on the hearing process through a survey issued today. Feedback from this survey will be incorporated in the Hearing Order to be released around mid-July. In addition, the NEB has invited Aboriginal intervenors to continue providing Oral Traditional Evidence.

Associated Links
•Ruling on Participation [Filing A77848]
•Direction to Participants #4 [Filing A77849]
•Letter to Aboriginal Intervenors regarding OTE [Filing A77850]

The National Energy Board is an independent federal regulator of several parts of Canada’s energy industry with the safety of Canadians and protection of the environment as its top priority. Its purpose is to regulate pipelines, energy development and trade in the Canadian public interest. For more information on the NEB and its mandate, please visit http://www.neb-one.gc.ca.

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As posted at https://docs.neb-one.gc.ca/ll-eng/llisapi.dll/fetch/2000/90464/90552/2432218/2540913/2671689/2997635/A77848-1_Ruling_No._14_-_List_of_Participants_-_A5D0S7.pdf?nodeid=2997950&vernum=-2

Northern Ontario Business | Northeast leaders throw support behind Energy East pipeline (well … one does, anyway)

Northern Ontario Business | June 20 | The National Energy Board’s (NEB) hearings into the proposed Energy East pipeline are encouraging for the leadership of the Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities (FONOM).

TransCanada’s proposed 4,500-kilometre pipeline is entering a 21-month review process before it heads to the federal government for a final decision.

“We are confident that TransCanada will adhere to the highest safety standards,” said Mayor Alan Spacek of Kapuskasing and president of FONOM. “The proposed pipeline would be rigorously regulated and evaluated by both provincial and federal bodies and would reduce the amount of oil being transported through our communities by rail and truck significantly.”

In extending its support, FONOM said in a June 17 news release that TransCanada has kept municipalities, First Nation communities, first responders, and individual Canadians informed about the entire process and have addressed any project-related concerns.

FONOM said the socioeconomic impacts will be felt along the proposed route with the Conference Board of Canada forecasting that Ontario will see the lion’s share of the benefits with 3,900 jobs created during its development and construction of the pipeline, and more than 1,500 jobs once in operation.

The pipeline would transport 1.1 million barrels of crude oil per day from Alberta and Saskatchewan to refineries in Eastern Canada and a marine terminal in New Brunswick.

“We know that the Energy East will be subjected to an extensive evaluation by the NEB. They have committed to engaging with Canadians along the route and we look forward to being part of that discussion,” said Spacek.

Published on: 6/20/2016 11:19:02 AM By: Northern Ontario Business staff as posted at http://www.northernontariobusiness.com/Industry-News/energy/2016/06/Northeast-leaders-throw-support-behind-Energy-East-pipeline.aspx

Canadian Press | Environmental groups launch court challenge of Trans Mountain pipeline expansion

Canadian Press | June 20 | A pair of environmental groups are asking the courts to quash a recommendation that the federal government allow the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project to go ahead.

Lawyers for the Living Oceans Society and the Raincoast Conservation Foundation have filed an application for judicial review of the National Energy Board’s recommendation in Vancouver’s Federal Court of Appeal, arguing that it is unlawful.

Documents filed in court Friday allege the NEB did not take into account the impact the $6.8-billion project would have on Southern Resident killer whales and their habitat.

If successful, a judicial review would force the board to reconsider its recommendation that the project be approved by the federal cabinet.

Trans Mountain wants to triple the capacity of its existing pipeline from the oilsands near Edmonton to Burnaby, B.C., increasing the number of tanker ships in the area seven-fold.

The NEB spent two years reviewing the proposal and heard from 35 indigenous groups and 400 interveners before issuing a report and a positive recommendation in May.

The recommendation is subject to 157 conditions on engineering, safety, environmental and emergency preparedness conditions.

But lawyer Dyna Tuytel said the report failed to consider the harm increased tanker traffic noise would cause endangered killer whales off of British Columbia’s coast.

“What (tanker traffic noise) does is it interferes with their communication and it interrupts their critical life functions like hunting or socializing … and causes them to do other activities such as travelling away from the noise,” Tuytel said in an interview.

Evidence about the impact on the whales was made at hearings on the project, but the board has not justified the damage that would be done, she said.

“People are frustrated with what the board has decided in the face of so much evidence of threats from this project.”

Read Full story

Gemma Karstens-Smith, VANCOUVER — The Canadian Press, Published Monday, Jun. 20, 2016 6:42AM EDT, as posted at
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/industry-news/energy-and-resources/environmental-groups-launch-court-challenge-of-trans-mountain-pipeline-expansion/article30519997/

The Nugget | ‘We’ll be ready when it comes to our turn,’ says North Bay mayor

The Nugget | June 17 | North Bay will be ready to put forward its concerns regarding the contentious Energy East pipeline project when National Energy Board hearings reach Ontario, says Mayor Al McDonald.

The board officially started the clock Thursday on its review of the pipeline project and now has 21 months to hold hearings along the 4,500-kilometre route from Alberta to New Brunswick. Once the hearings are completed, the board will report to government whether the pipeline is in the national interest.

The hearings will begin in Saint John, N.B., on Aug. 8 and NEB director Jean-Denis Charlebois said the review will be one of the most comprehensive ever conducted by the regulator.

“This review will be unlike any other in the NEB’s history,” Charlebois said during a briefing Thursday in Calgary. “All Canadians who wish to take part in the decision on this project will be heard.”

McDonald said the city, which has been granted intervenor status as part of the hearings, is working with a legal firm and the North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority on its submission.

The city’s concern is the potential impact the project could have on North Bay’s drinking water source because the pipeline crosses numerous streams and watercourses which flow into Trout Lake.

The conservation authority has also indicated a spill or malfunction could also impact Bonfield, Calvin and Papineau-Cameron.

“We’re still working on our submission. But we’ll be ready when it comes to our turn, said McDonald, noting the city has yet to receive any details as to how the hearings will unfold or when it will be called upon to make its submission.

While the review is only now beginning, the debate around the TransCanada (TSX:TRP) project has already become polarized, with environmental groups and some First Nations and politicians expressing total opposition.

READ FULL STORY

With files from Canadian Press, By GORD YOUNG, The Nugget, Friday, June 17, 2016 1:00:03 EDT AM, as posted at http://www.nugget.ca/2016/06/17/well-be-ready-when-it-comes-to-our-turn-says-north-bay-mayor

Kenora Daily Miner: NEB declares Energy East application complete

Kenora Daily Miner and News | June 16 | There are mixed reactions from groups in the region after the National Energy Board declared the Energy East Project application from TransCanada to be complete as of Thursday, June 16.

As of today, the NEB has until March 16, 2018 to hold public hearings along the proposed route and submit a report and make a recommendation to the federal government if the pipeline is in the public interest.

The project would move crude oil from Alberta to Eastern Canada if built.

Teika Newton, the executive director for Transition Initiative Kenora, said she’s not really surprised by the announcement but still finds it premature.

“They are not prepared yet to release a list of participants, they don’t have a date set for releasing a hearing order and yet they’ve started a 21-month clock on the whole process,” she said.

On the other hand, the Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association (NOMA) released a statement saying it was “encouraged” by the project’s move to the next stage.

READ FULL STORY

KATHLEEN CHARLEBOIS, Kenora Daily Miner and News, Thursday, June 16, 2016 6:06:21 EDT PM As posted at http://www.kenoradailyminerandnews.com/2016/06/16/neb-declares-energy-east-application-complete

New drinking water protection zone signs installed

City of North Bay (Tuesday, June 14, 2016 – North Bay, ON) – Residents will notice new “Drinking Water Protection Zone” signs on Trout Lake Road and other roads across the region.

These signs are part of the North Bay-Mattawa Drinking Water Source Protection program to protect municipal drinking water sources and create public awareness that certain activities in specific areas may impact a municipal water supply.

“Protecting our municipal water sources is important for the health of our community, so it’s important that we are all aware of where these vulnerable areas are,” said City of North Bay Mayor Al McDonald. “These signs will also act as a reminder to first responders so that public water sources can be protected in the event of a spill.”

In total, 15 signs will be installed throughout the region including the two signs installed last week on Trout Lake Road at Lakeside Drive and Lee’s Rd. Signs are also being installed on roads in Callander, Mattawa, South River and Machar to mark the Drinking Water Protection Zones in those municipalities. The Ministry of Transportation will post signs on Highway 11 in Powassan and on Highway 63 east of North Bay marking designated protection zones.

“The vulnerability of each municipal drinking water source varies as does the activities which could put them at risk of contamination. What’s most important is for the public to be sensitive to the fact that some activities in these areas can have an impact,” said Jeff Celentano, Chair of the North Bay-Mattawa Source Protection Committee which developed the Source Protection Plan for this region.

If a spill occurs within a vulnerable area, the public should call the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change’s Spills Action Centre at 1-800-268-6060 and indicate that the spill is within a vulnerable area.

Installation of the Drinking Water Protection Zone signs is one of the initiatives in the North Bay-Mattawa Source Protection Plan to help reduce the threat of contamination of municipal drinking water supplies. A full copy of the plan, and maps of the vulnerable areas, can be found at www.actforcleanwater.ca. Property owners can check to see if their homes fall within a vulnerable area.

The North Bay-Mattawa Drinking Water Source Protection Program is overseen by a multi-stakeholder Source Protection Committee, administered by North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority and funded by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change.

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The City of North Bay is a city of 54,000 people situated between the shores of Lake Nipissing and Trout Lake. Visit our website at cityofnorthbay.ca.

The North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority (NBMCA) provides drinking water source protection, watershed management, septic approval and stewardship programs throughout the region. www.nbmca.ca.

As posted at https://www.cityofnorthbay.ca/news/new-drinking-water-protection-zone-signs-installed/