Pipeline Construction Project Approved in Canada

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The National Energy Board (NEB) has conditionally approved an application from Enbridge Pipelines (NW) to replace a 2.5 kilometer segment of its Line 21 Pipeline, also known as the Norman Wells Pipeline. Enbridge filed its application on March 10, 2017 after identifying a potential safety concern related to a shifting slope on the Mackenzie River.

In its decision, the NEB issued 26 mandatory project conditions, including a requirement to file an Indigenous Monitoring Plan. This plan will describe how local Indigenous peoples will participate in monitoring project construction and post-construction. Enbridge must also file Indigenous Engagement Reports and an Indigenous Knowledge and Land Use Study Update. The agency also approved Enbridge’s plan to leave the section of pipe that is being replaced under the Mackenzie River. The section of pipe that is to be left behind will be cleaned, filled with grout and capped, in accordance with NEB regulations and CSA standards.

From Oct. 23 – 26, 2017, the NEB held a hearing in Fort Simpson, Northwest Territories to review the application. During the hearing, the NEB heard from Enbridge, six intervenors and nine commenters including: Indigenous groups, local governments, Imperial Oil Resources N.W.T. Limited and the Government of the Northwest Territories.

In addition, the NEB carried out an environmental assessment of the project and found that the project is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects.

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