Questions and Answers: Line 9
1. What did the NEB decide? Is the pipeline allowed to operate?
The NEB has issued an order requiring Enbridge to conduct hydrostatic testing on three segments of Line 9B to provide the necessary level of confidence in the pipeline’s safe operation.
This means that before Line 9B is allowed to operate, hydrostatic testing results of three segments of the pipeline must be provided to and approved by the NEB.
The NEB did approve Enbridge’s leave to open application No 6 which the company presented as their final, or last, leave to open application. The application dealt with a small number of new piping and assemblies.
2. Why not hydrotest the whole line?
The NEB requires Enbridge to conduct hydrostatic testing on three segments of Line 9B to provide the necessary level of confidence in the pipeline’s safe operation.
NEB engineering experts determined the number and location of the segments that would provide the best results to validate the existing data. This level of testing will provide the information we need.
Hydrostatic testing may affect the existing pipeline; modifying the results of the internal, or in-line inspections. If a hydrostatic test of the entire pipeline was performed, it would be more difficult for Enbridge to predict the future condition of the pipeline for the next several years until a series of new in-line inspections were completed over several years’ time.
3. What happens next?
Before Line 9B becomes operational, hydrostatic testing results of three segments of the pipeline must be provided and approved by the NEB.
If the Board is not convinced that the project will be safe and operated in a manner that protects communities and the environment - Enbridge will not be allowed to operate that pipeline.
4. Is this the end of the NEB’s regulatory role?
No. The NEB is a lifecycle regulator. We do not simply make a decision on a project and walk away. We oversee safety for the full lifecycle - from project proposal to construction and operation and through to the end of its use.
It is the NEB’s job to make sure companies are doing what it takes to keep their pipelines safe.
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