by EVAN MATTHEWS
The National Energy Board (NEB) has given its approval to push forward on the Trans Mountain Expansion Project.
The Trans Mountain Expansion Project, proposed by Kinder Morgan, plans to expand the existing Trans Mountain pipeline system between Edmonton, AB and Burnaby, B.C., increasing the capacity of the existing Trans Mountain Pipeline System from 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 890,000 bpd.
The Board then said it considered all pros and cons associated with the project in order to determine whether the project is in the best interest of the Canadian public.
“Trans Mountain is pleased the National Energy Board has recommended our Project be approved by Governor in Council because it is in the Canadian public interest,” said Kinder Morgan Canada Inc., in a press release.
The board’s recommendation report is one of the factors the Governor in Council will consider when making the final decision on whether or not the Project should proceed, according to the NEB.
Kinder Morgan submitted its Trans Mountain expansion project application in December 2013.
In early August, the NEB released 145 draft conditions for the project. On Aug. 21, the NEB postponed oral hearings and struck from the record any evidence prepared by Steven Kelly, who had submitted evidence as a Kinder Morgan consultant.
NEB spokesperson Reny Chakkalakal said Trans Mountain filed a list of the evidence prepared by Kelly on Aug. 28, and indicated the list would be replaced by Sept. 25, 2015.
Kelly has since been appointed to the NEB by the former Harper government, effective Oct. 13, 2015, thus being on the very same decision-making board he recently submit evidence to.
The deadline for the board, which Kelly is a part of was on May. 20, and the board voted in favour of the Trans Mountain Expansion Project.
The NEB released its 533-page report outlining the board’s approval, which is subject to 157 conditions.
Some of the conditions include regulatory and overarching requirements, requirements relating to engineering and safety, emergency preparation and response, environmental protection, people, communities and lands, financial responsibility and project-related marine shipping.
In a press release, the NEB said through the public hearing process it heard all evidence and arguments made for and against Trans Mountain’s application to execute the project including consultation of Indigenous groups, potential impacts and proposed mitigation measures.