Mr. Speaker, open, fair, inclusive, and transparent processes for review of energy projects are critical to ensuring public confidence and to having good projects move forward with the support of Canadians.
With regard to (a), in January 2016, the government outlined an interim approach to guide its reviews of, and decisions on, major resource projects. The interim approach is premised on five principles or criteria.
One, no project proponent will be asked to return to the starting line. In other words, the government will review projects under, and make its decisions in accordance with, the laws in place at the time when proponents submitted project proposals.
Two, decisions will be based on science, traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples and other relevant evidence.
Three, the views of the public and affected communities will be sought and considered.
Four, indigenous peoples will be meaningfully consulted, and where appropriate, impacts on their rights and interests will be accommodated.
Five, direct and upstream greenhouse gas emissions linked to the projects under review will be assessed.
The interim approach will be in place until the government concludes its reviews of the federal environmental assessment and regulatory legislation. The government has applied the interim approach to its reviews of, and decisions on, the Line 3 replacement project, the Trans Mountain expansion project, the Nova Gas Transmission line 2017, and the Towerbirch expansion project. These projects are moving forward and creating tens of thousands of good middle-class jobs.
With regard to (b), there have been no variations in the government’s application of the interim approach to any project.
On October 5, 2017, the proponents of the energy east and eastern mainline projects, energy east, decided to withdraw the project applications. The proponent made a business decision. The government would have used the exact same review process for the energy east project.