Participant Funding Program - Regular Funding Envelope
Funding Review Committee's Report
Northern Gateway Pipeline Project

Allocation of Phase II Funding for Participation in the Environmental Assessment Process

The Participant Funding Program (PFP) was established pursuant to subsection 58(1.1) of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (the Act), which states: For the purposes of this Act, the Minister shall establish a participant funding program to facilitate the participation of the public in comprehensive studies, mediations and assessments by review panels.

A funding review committee (FRC), independent from the environmental assessment (EA) of the Northern Gateway Pipeline Project (the Project) being conducted by a joint review panel (JRP), was established to review funding applications received under Phase II of the PFP Regular Funding Envelope (RFE), and to recommend the allocation of up to $600,000 to applicants.

On January 20, and February 2, 2010, the FRC met to review twelve applications received by the PFP-RFE, requesting a total of $983,671. The activities eligible for funding is the review of the application (Environmental Impact Statement or EIS) to be submitted by the proponent, Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipelines, and to prepare for and participate in the public hearings to be held by the JRP.

The FRC members were Mr. Bruce Morgan, Executive Advisor to the Vice President, Operations Sector, Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (the Agency) acting as Committee Chairperson, Mr. Paul Scott, retired Regional Director of the Agency's Pacific and Yukon office, Mr. Ray Crook, Environmental Assessment Consultant; and Mr. Patrick Duxbury, Environmental Consultant.

Background

The Project is a proposal by Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipelines to construct and operate two pipelines, each 1170 km in length, routed along a common right of way between an inland terminal at Bruderheim, Alberta and a marine terminal near Kitimat, British Columbia. About 500 km of pipeline will be located in Alberta and 670 km in British Columbia. One of the pipelines will carry petroleum west to Kitimat and the other line will carry condensate east to Bruderheim. The Project also includes the construction and operation of an integrated marine infrastructure at tidewater to accommodate loading and unloading of oil and condensate, tankers and marine transportation of oil and condensate.

On August 7, 2009, the Agency announced the availability of $600,000 for public participation in the review and comment on the application to be submitted by the proponent and to prepare for and participate in the public hearings to be held by the JRP. On December 4, 2009, the Agency extended the deadline for submitting applications to December 18, 2009.

On December 4, 2009, the Agency and the National Energy Board (NEB) issued the Joint Review Panel Agreement (the Agreement), including the Terms of Reference, for the environmental and regulatory review of the Project.

Eligibility

Individuals, Aboriginal groups and incorporated not-for-profit organizations that demonstrated they met at least one of the following criteria were eligible for participant funding under the program. They either:

  • Have a direct, local interest in the Project, such as living in or owning property in the Project area; or
  • Have community knowledge or Aboriginal traditional knowledge relevant to the EA; or
  • Have expert information relevant to the anticipated environmental effects of the Project.

Parties that are for-profit, have a direct commercial interest in the Project, or represent another level of government other than an Aboriginal government are ineligible for participant funding.

Rationale for Allocation

Overall, the FRC found that the applications were relatively well prepared and provided sufficient detail on what activities would be undertaken and how the funds would be spent. The FRC supported funding of activities which were within the scope of the EA and that would add value to the JRP process.

The FRC would like to stress that providing detailed information on the experience of professionals, how they will enhance the participation of the group through the tasks they perform, and why this assistance is needed by the applicant is very important. This information helps the FRC to better understand the applicants' proposed activities and how effectively they will input into the EA.

The FRC appreciated that three of the applicants coordinated the preparation of their applications and proposed to collaborate to maximize the contribution of their respective funding awards to the JRP process.

Applicants who did not receive funding either did not provide sufficient information in their applications, or did not demonstrate an ability to provide useful input into the EA being carried out by the JRP, or proposed activities that were duplicative of those being conducted by either the proponent (such as original impact assessment studies) or the JRP (such as consultations with the general public).

Recommendation

The FRC recommends that a total of $435,780 be awarded to nine of the twelve applicants for the purposes of reviewing the EIS, preparing for and participating in the JRP hearings, and submitting a report to the JRP.

Participant Funding Program Funding Review Committee Regular Funding Envelope - Phase II

Northern Gateway Pipeline Project

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Mr. Bruce Morgan, Committee Chairperson, Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency

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Mr. Paul Scott, Retired Regional Director of the Agency's Vancouver office

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Mr. Ray Crook, Environmental Assessment Consultant

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Mr. Patrick Duxbury, Environmental Consultant

Recommended Participant Funding Awards
Regular Funding Envelope

Northern Gateway Pipeline Project – Phase II

Applicant Total Amount Recommended
Forest Ethics Canada Project (Tides Canada Initiatives Society) $59,605
Living Oceans Society $91,000
Raincoast Conservation Foundation $83,790
Walter D. Thorne, representing Kitimat Valley Naturalist Club $20,000
BC Wildlife Federation $38,540
David John Shannon $0
United Fishermen and Allied Workers' Union – CAW $64,665
Wade Ostrander $0
Nature Canada $47,745
Dogwood Initiative $10,435
K.T. Industrial Development Society $0
Friends of Michel Society $20,000
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