CALGARY, A.B. – TransCanada Corporation has submitted a letter in response to a jurisdictional challenge filed by a former Alberta resident against the company’s proposed Coastal GasLink pipeline.
Michael Sawyer, who worked two decades in Alberta as an environmental consultant in the oil and gas sector argues that Coastal GasLink should have faced a federal environmental review instead of a provincial one.
Previously, Sawyer launched a similar challenge against TransCanada’s proposed Prince Rupert Gas Transmission pipeline, but that was rejected by the National Energy Board.
However, last year the Federal Court of Appeal ruled against the NEB, saying that it must consider whether the pipeline fell under federal jurisdiction.
In a letter on behalf of the company, TransCanada V.P. of Natural Gas Pipelines Law Catharine Davis said that the Board should decline to establish a process to examine the jurisdictional question raised in Sawyer’s application.
“Six years after the public process began to decide whether the Project should be allowed to proceed (a process the applicant chose not to participate in), four years after Project approval, and four years after the applicant’s similar challenge to another approved LNG pipeline, the applicant again seeks to create uncertainty masked in a question of constitutional law,” the letter reads. “While aware of the issues raised in the Application for at least four years, the applicant has waited until the eve of the publicly known Final Investment Decision (FID) date for the LNG Canada Project to impact that project and associated developments (including the Project).”
If the NEB approves Sawyer’s application, it would then hold a hearing.
If Sawyer is successful in that hearing, that would mean a federal review of the pipeline would be required, which could potentially delay construction if LNG Canada goes ahead.
The full submission by TransCanada can be read below.