The knowledge we gain through them allows us to develop the appropriate mitigation measures to minimize the impact that the construction and operations of our projects may have on the environment.
This is how we work. And we have the same approach with the Energy East Pipeline project.
In October 2014, TransCanada filed an application with the National Energy Board. The 20,000-page filing contained a detailed Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment based on multiple studies our environmental experts and consultants did on soils, vegetation, wildlife, archeological resources or wetlands — to name a few.
Geotechnical surveys are one of the field studies we conduct to select the best engineering and design of the project infrastructure.
What are those surveys for?
Essentially, they are ground and seabed analyses to determine existing soil and rock conditions to ensure the infrastructure we plan to develop is safe and adapted to the local environment.
The Energy East team is about to start new surveys in the Bay of Fundy to help us plan the Canaport Energy East marine terminal being proposed in Saint John Harbour, New Brunswick. They will actually be a continuation of preliminary work conducted in the area in 2014.
Connecting with communities
As part of our ongoing community consultation initiatives, we informed our Red Head Community Liaison Committee (a group of adjacent landowners and stakeholders) about the surveys in a meeting held a few weeks ago. We also notified all New Brunswick First Nation communities in an open and transparent manner.
We informed local residents and First Nations because we wanted to provide information proactively before work starts and answer any questions and concerns. We will continue to provide updates on this work as the project progresses.
Before starting any work, we obtained a letter of authorization from Transport Canada as the surveys are governed under the Navigable Waters Protection Program. No provincial or federal permits are required but as we have done throughout our company’s history, we will continue to work with all levels of government to move important projects like this one forward.
Finally, even though this is already an active area within the Port of Saint John – with the existing Canaport LNG terminal and the Canaport monobuoy – we ensured that our work did not impact marine species or their habitat by undergoing a thorough assessment of the area. The work will also be completed well ahead of the lobster fishing season which doesn’t start until mid-November.
We are serious about our commitment to develop a project that is both safe and sustainable for the environment.
We have already conducted a large number of field studies across the six provinces Energy East will connect, and this work continues as we seek to provide Canadians with the most comprehensive information on our environmental planning measures, design and construction methods for safe operations.