Re: February 17 letter, The Star, "Pipeline not a dream"
The Trans Mountain Expansion Project has just completed the most comprehensive regulatory review process in the history of the National Energy Board. For more than two years, 1,650 Intervenors and Commenters have had the opportunity to ask questions, provide evidence and offer their views on the project.
We’ve presented the very best scientific and technical evidence, and have answered more than 17,000 questions since we filed our 16,000 page application. And, that’s in addition to the more than three years of consultation that has taken place with thousands of individuals, including some 159 open houses and workshops and more than 24,000 points of engagement with Aboriginal communities.
Trans Mountain has made more than 400 commitments to address concerns raised by the public, encompassing a wide range of areas including emergency response, incident prevention, and river crossing procedures, to name a few. If our project is approved, each and every one of these commitments will be implemented.
That said, the importance of public trust and confidence in the process has always been a priority for us. We’re continuing to have meaningful conversations with Canadians and incorporating their ideas and feedback into our project.
We’ve proposed comprehensive measures to mitigate environmental effects during construction, including for the 116 salmon-bearing crossings within the B.C. portion of the proposed pipeline corridor. We’ll work with stakeholders, Aboriginal communities and regulatory authorities to protect, preserve and, where possible, enhance the freshwater habitat of salmon stocks.
Fisheries research has been a vital component of our project. Field crews have investigated potential watercourse crossing options and learned more about potentially sensitive habitat. These teams have visited more than 1,000 locations and the information gathered will allow us to avoid or minimize impact to fish and fish habitat.
We take our commitment to environmental protection seriously, as demonstrated during our Anchor Loop expansion project, which crossed through Jasper National Park and Mount Robson Provincial Park. That project received the prestigious Emerald Award in recognition of the excellent environmental initiatives undertaken.
And, we have a long history of investing in environmental stewardship. For more than 20 years, we have taken part in local habitat enhancement events and activities. Trans Mountain has contributed $50,000 to the Pacific Salmon Foundation in response to stakeholder feedback and input from Aboriginal groups identifying salmon habitat as a priority.
Ultimately, the expansion project brings long-term benefits that balance social, environmental and economic interests. We’re proudly building on our 60-year history of positive working relationships and demonstrated commitment to safe and reliable operations, and we look forward to creating lasting legacies for the future.
I encourage you to learn more about our project at www.transmountain.com.
Scott Stoness, Vice President of Regulatory and Finance, Kinder Morgan Canada