OEB Releases Update of its Environmental Guidelines for Hydrocarbon Projects

Today the OEB released the 8th edition of its Environmental Guidelines for the Location, Construction and Operation of Hydrocarbon Projects and Facilities in Ontario (Environmental Guidelines). The Environmental Guidelines provide direction to parties seeking hydrocarbon pipeline or natural gas storage related approvals from the OEB under the Ontario Energy Board Act, 1998 (Hydrocarbon Projects). They also describe the role of the Ontario Pipeline Coordinating Committee (OPCC) – comprised of provincial ministries and agencies with responsibilities in respect of Hydrocarbon Projects – in the OEB’s process.

The focus of the updates to this edition of the Environmental Guidelines is the process by which members of the OPCC provide feedback on individual Hydrocarbon Projects, as well as the requirements that individual OPCC members have with respect to various permits or approvals they issue that may be related to Hydrocarbon Projects. The development of these updates benefitted from input from the OPCC members, Conservation Ontario, and the rate regulated natural gas utilities.

This edition does not include any material changes to the portions of the document relating to Indigenous consultation and the Constitutional duty to consult. The OEB has initiated a separate review of the Indigenous consultation and duty to consult sections of the Environmental Guidelines to assess whether and how improvements and updates to the process should be implemented.

The project to update the OEB’s Environmental Guidelines is now complete.

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