MORE THAN 17,000 QUESTIONS ASKED, HALF-WAY THROUGH THE NEB PROCESS

Trans Mountain crossed a major threshold on February 18, responding to the second and final round of broad-ranging information requests from Intervenors regarding its $5.4 billion pipeline Expansion Project.

So far, Intervenors have posed more than 16,000 questions, including more than 5,600 from Intervenors in Round Two of the written portion of the hearing for Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMEP). In addition to two rounds of Intervenor questions, Trans Mountain has responded to three rounds of Information Requests, or IRs, from the NEB.

Early in the process, the NEB identified a list of 12 issues to consider during the TMEP hearing, which began on April 2, 2014 and is scheduled to close after final argument in October 2015.

“At just over the half-way mark in the NEB hearing process, our team has worked tirelessly to put together a thoughtful and thorough Application and answer thousands of questions from all those involved,” said Ian Anderson, President of Kinder Morgan Canada. “There is still a lot of work ahead and our conversations will continue both within the hearing process and through our engagement as we work to make the Project the best we can with consideration of as much input as possible.”

Information Requests from the NEB and from a roster of more than 400 Intervenors have covered topics such as the economic feasibility of the Project, potential environmental and social effects, emergency preparedness, and spill response capacity.

The IRs are based on the 15,000-page Application Trans Mountain filed to the NEB on December 12, 2013, additional filings and updates from the company, as well as the NEB’s list of issues.

The NEB process has both written and oral components and involves Aboriginal groups, companies, organizations and individuals. In addition to Intervenors, there are 1,250 Commenters who can submit letters to the Board. Intervenors got two rounds of questioning while the Board has four — although the NEB can follow up with questions arising from issues raised by Intervenors and Commenters.

Since the initiation of the proposed Project in 2012, Trans Mountain has conducted ongoing engagement regarding pipeline routing with Aboriginal groups, landowners and stakeholders including local, regional and provincial governments. Following the December 2013 filing, Trans Mountain continued its work to optimize the route and reduce impacts to people and the environment through a combination of technical and environmental studies, engagement activities and on-the-ground fieldwork.

FAST FACTS:

  • The NEB asked some 1,000 questions over three rounds of IRs
  • Intervenors asked some 10,500 questions in the first round of questions
  • Intervenors submitted 5,600 questions in the second (just completed) round of questions
  • The most active Intervenors in Round Two were the City of Burnaby (more than 625 questions), the City of Vancouver (more than 445), and the Upper Nicola Band (more than 390).
  • To date, including application and answers to questions, Trans Mountain has provided more than 50,000 pages of information to the NEB
  • 34 First Nations participated in Aboriginal Oral Hearings held in 5 cities

HIGHLIGHTS OF SCHEDULE FOR UPCOMING HEARING EVENTS:

  • February-March, 2015 — An opportunity for Intervenors to submit motions to compel more detailed information, in addition to answers provided to the IR responses filed on Feb. 18, 2015.
  • March 17, 2015 — Deadline for Trans Mountain to answer questions about the TERMPOL report submitted to the NEB as part of the Project Application. TERMPOL is the acronym for Technical Review Process of Marine Terminal Systems and Transshipment. Trans Mountain voluntarily undertook a TERMPOL process that focused on increased marine transportation related to the expansion Project;
  • March 17, 2015 – Deadline for Trans Mountain to answer questions from intervenors who received late participant funding from the National Energy Board.
  • July 23, 2015 – Letters of Comment Filed
  • July 29, 2015 — NEB to release Draft Conditions
  • August/September 2015 — NEB Oral hearings to make oral summary arguments;
  • October 2015 — NEB Hearing closes; and
  • January 2016 — NEB releases its report to the Governor in Council and provides it to the Minister of Natural Resources.
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