Today in Fredericton, the National Energy Board panel heard from representatives from the communities of Edmundston, Plaster Rock and Upper Miramichi; the Miramichi Valley Business Association; the Government of New Brunswick and the New Brunswick Aboriginal Peoples Council.
Concerns raised today include:
- The community of Edmundston recently passed a formal resolution that strongly opposes any Energy East pipeline route that would cross the community’ only two aquifers providing water to 96 per cent of the city’s 16,000 residents.
- In light of the risk to the communities drinking water, what is the emergency response plan in event that an oil spill contaminates either of the Iroquois and Blanchette Brook watersheds that provide the city’s drinking water?
- How would the company respond in the event that the contaminated drinking water isn’t easily accessible, i.e. an underground aquifer?
- How would replacement drinking water be provided?
- Why has the pipeline route that currently runs through the Iroquois Watershed near Edmundston not been moved as requested by First Nations communities?
- The impact of the project on First Nations rights, particularly:
- Government position on consulting First Nations not living on reserves
- The pipeline’s effects on agricultural lands, heritage sites and fishing agreements
The NEB has organized a series of information sessions taking place from August to December 2016, beginning with the session in Saint John. At these sessions, intervenors are limited to short presentations and have been asked to present high level questions they want answered and issues they want considered. Proponent representatives (spokespeople from TransCanada and Irving Oil) may respond. Intervenors and other participants may also submit further questions in writing.
A total of 337 applicants have been granted intervenor status, including the Conservation Council of New Brunswick. Our Fundy Baykeeper, Matt Abbott, spoke as an intervenor on Tuesday, August 9 in Saint John. To read about the concerns we raised, see here.
Read a summary of the NEB panel sessions here:
NEB information sessions in Saint John:
- Day #1 at Energy East NEB sessions in Saint John: risks of major spills dominate discussion
- Day #2 of NEB panel sessions in Saint John: what does this mean for N.B.?
- Day #3 at Energy East NEB sessions in Saint John: NEB gets an earful from First Nations groups
NEB information sessions in Fredericton: