Any pending and future pipelines in Canada will be subject to new environmental regulations. The new review process will apply to current projects such as TransCanada’s Energy East pipelines.
The climate test will attempt to estimate how the project will impact greenhouse gas emissions.
Canada’s Environment Minister Catherine McKenna said in a news conference this week:
“We believe it is important and, in fact, essential to rebuild Canadians’ trust in our environmental assessment processes.”
“We need to take into account the views and concerns of Canadians, respect the rights and interests of indigenous peoples and support our natural resources sector.”
Results from the climate test will be passed to cabinet, which will make the final decision.
Current Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, is attempting to fulfill his election campaign promises to improve environmental regulations, especially in relation to pipeline projects:
“The federal role is to put into place a process by which TransCanada and any other companies could demonstrate that their projects are in the public interest and could have public support.”
Trudeau has so far pushed Canada into a more leading role on climate change action. Previously the country was viewed as lagging behind. Although the Prime Minister is questioning the impacts of many current projects, he was a supporter of Keystone XL until President Obama’s rejection.
Now if only the United States could put into place a more sound and mandatory environmental review of our own projects.