We have held more than 100 open houses across Canada in communities along the proposed Energy East pipeline route, giving us the opportunity to answer your questions on serious issues such as safety, wildlife protection or the economic opportunities the project will generate. We’re proud to say that these open houses encouraged some great dialogue that we’d like to share with every Canadian interested in the Energy East project.
Will the pipeline be safe?
Yes. TransCanada has more than 60 years of experience building and operating safe and reliable pipelines throughout North America, and our industry-leading safety track record will continue with Energy East. The project will be the safest way to transport oil from Western Canada to refineries and port terminals in Eastern Canada.
We monitor our pipelines 24 hours a day, 365 days a year using technology that provides our control centre with data every five seconds from thousands of points across the pipeline. We carry out aerial patrols of the pipeline’s right-of-way by helicopters and planes. We have Emergency Response Plans in place all along the pipeline. Our commitment to go above and beyond federal safety regulations means we’re confident in the safety of the pipeline project.
Want to learn more? Check out the Safety section of our website.
What measures will you take in the case of an emergency?
While we must emphasize that an emergency is unlikely to happen, we must also be prepared for any potential circumstance. It’s important to understand that if an emergency does occur, TransCanada is 100 percent responsible for making things right and ensuring we restore the site to its previous condition.
TransCanada has one of the best pipeline safety and operating records in the industry. While we are proud of our track record, we are relentless in ensuring we continue to improve. We believe that every incident, however minor, can be prevented. This is why our goal is zero incidents. Our pipeline system is monitored 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and we develop comprehensive Emergency Response Plans in collaboration with local emergency response officials in the communities in which we operate. Trained personnel and equipment are strategically located along the pipeline system, ready to respond quickly and efficiently.
What measures are you taking to ensure the safety of the environment?
We work hard to minimize our environmental footprint in each project we undertake, and Energy East will be no exception. Almost 70 per cent of the pipeline is already in the ground, which will greatly reduce the project’s environmental impact from the outset. We are conducting extensive field studies, environmental assessments and meetings with local experts to ensure we protect precious landscapes and wildlife, while meeting our obligation to address growing energy demands across our continent. Some of these studies were contained in our formal project application with the National Energy Board. .
Read more about our commitment to the environment.
Will you take specific measures to protect waterways?
Yes. The Energy East project team understands the important role all aquifers, rivers and lakes play in maintaining sensitive and vital ecosystems across Canada. Our project planning includes thorough environmental and field studies, as well as consultation with the public, local authorities and environmental experts to gather site specific information.
Design, construction and method of crossing will be based on industry-proven construction techniques. We will include additional protective design features, such as heavy walled pipe, burying the pipe deep in the ground, and the strategic placement of shutoff valves. Geotechnical monitoring will be used to detect signs of erosion or movement where the pipeline crosses bodies of water. Our integrity and maintenance program, in which we invest hundreds of millions of dollars each year, means we will carry out regular pipeline integrity checks, with high-tech tools, and of course our highly-trained staff will monitor the pipeline on a 24/7 basis from our control centre in Calgary.
How will Energy East benefit our country?
Energy East will move some of Canada’s abundant oil reserves from west to east, helping to make domestic refineries less dependent on foreign oil imports. Our country has the world’s third-largest oil reserves but rely on foreign sources for 86 per cent of Eastern Canada’s daily oil supply because of limited transportation options. The Energy East Pipeline Project will transport up to 1.1 million barrels of domestic oil each day. Energy East will help our country meet growing energy demand at home and abroad. Read more about how we use oil in our daily lives
What are the project’s economic benefits?
Independent studies show that the project will create thousands of jobs all the way from Alberta to New Brunswick. These are both direct jobs in developing, building and maintaining the pipeline, and secondary jobs from the economic activity such a large-scale project will generate in hundreds of communities across the pipeline route.
Energy East will generate billions of dollars’ worth in additional tax revenues for municipal, provincial and federal governments. This is money that will not come out of the taxpayer’s pockets and will contribute to fund public projects such as schools, roads and hospitals. The Conference Board of Canada has calculated that the project will add $36 billion to Canada’s economy. This is a huge amount. To put things into perspective, it is nearly three times the annual contribution of the auto industry to Ontario’s GDP.
Learn more about the project’s economic benefits.
How many new jobs will the pipeline create?
Over the seven-year development and construction phase, the project will generate an estimated 13,690 full-time equivalent (FTE) direct and indirect jobs linked to all types of activities, from pipe welding and engineering to road transport, refineries and hotels. During the first 20 years of operations, we expect the project to sustain 3,273 full-time direct and indirect jobs in Canada.
The Energy East team is focused on fostering employment locally all along the pipeline route, like the 250 jobs that our recent electric motors contract to GE Canada will create at their plant in Peterborough, Ontario, and within their local supply chain. This is just one concrete example of the kind of opportunities the pipeline project will create for Canadian workers across the country.
Learn more about the project’s economic benefits here.
How will the project affect Canada’s Aboriginal communities?
TransCanada is committed to create and maintain a dialog with Canada’s First Nations and Métis communities who live along the pipeline route, and ensure that they are involved in the details of the project. We’re engaging with a total of 155 Aboriginal communities and organizations across the country and work with each community to find mutually acceptable solutions and benefits.
TransCanada also strives to create short- and long-term employment opportunities for Aboriginal peoples impacted by its activities. We support learning opportunities for Aboriginal peoples to provide a well-trained source of Aboriginal employees and to build capacity within Aboriginal communities.
Read more about our engagement efforts.
What is TransCanada’s stance on climate change?
TransCanada supports a unified North American response to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which includes a shift toward less carbon-intensive energy sources over time. We’ve invested more than $5 billion in emission-less energy sources, including wind farms, solar generation and certified low-impact hydro facilities. We also specialize in building high-efficiency natural gas-fired power plants that are helping to replace coal-fired power plants in Canada and the United States.
Our long-term dedication to investing in emission-less and high-efficiency energy sources, research and development and environmental initiatives was recognized in 2014 when TransCanada was listed as a world leader for corporate disclosure on climate change by CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project).
Does TransCanada engage in fracking?
TransCanada does not engage in fracking or any other type of oil exploration and production; we transport oil and gas through our pipeline network. We’re proud to be considered a leader in the responsible development and safe operation of North American energy infrastructure.