FAQs – Manitoba-Minnesota Transmission Project
Updated 5 June 2018
- Why did the NEB recommend that the project be subject to a hearing?
- Will there be an environmental assessment?
- When will the public hearing be held and where?
- Why conduct a federal hearing when there is already been a provincial one?
- What will be done to avoid duplication?
- What is the effect of the change on the overall timing of the NEB's assessment?
- When does the 15 month time limit begin?
- Who will make the final decision?
- What is the difference in between a permit and certificate?
1. Why did the NEB recommend that the project be subject to a hearing?
The recommendation to go to a hearing was made so that Indigenous considerations are fully taken into account as part of the NEB’s assessment.
It was made following careful analysis of recent Supreme Court of Canada rulings and the Manitoba Clean Environment Commission recommendation report for the project.
See letter to Minister for more details [Filing A87404].
2. Will there be an environmental assessment?
Yes. As part of the hearing process, there will be an environmental assessment under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act 2012 (CEAA 2012).
3. When will the public hearing be held and where?
The oral components of the hearing will take place in Winnipeg in June 2018.
Oral Traditional Evidence sessions take place 4 to 8 June 2018. See project page for details (schedule and link to audio feed)
Oral Cross examination and Final Arguments will take place 18 to 22 June 2018.
4. Why conduct a federal hearing when there is already been a provincial one?
Federal laws in place require a federal assessment of the project.
However the NEB will seek to avoid duplication whenever possible.
5. What will be done to avoid duplication?
To reduce duplication, the NEB requested that Manitoba Hydro file all documents from the Manitoba Clean Environment Commission public hearing onto the NEB’s record.
When contemplating participation in the NEB hearing, people who took part in the provincial process and who are contemplating participating in the NEB process, are encouraged to consider only the new information they want to bring forward.
6. What is the effect of the change on the overall timing of the NEB's assessment?
The NEB is committed to consider this project within the 15-month time limit set in the National Energy Board Act (NEB Act)
7. When does the 15 month time limit begin?
The time limit began when the Board deemed the application to be complete as set out in the NEB Act, which was on 21 December 2017. This means that the NEB will be making a decision before March 2019.
8. Who will make the final decision?
If the NEB concludes that the project is not in the public interest, the process will stop there.
If the NEB determines that the project is in the public interest, it issues a certificate for the construction and operation of the project, with conditions as appropriate. The certificate is subject to the approval of the Governor-in-Council (i.e. Cabinet).
9. What is the difference in between a permit process and a certificate process?
A permit process involves a technical assessment carried out by the NEB. A public hearing does not take place.
A certificate process involves a public hearing to determine whether the project is in the public interest.
To make a public interest determination, the NEB must hear from any person directly affected by the application, and may hear from anyone who has relevant information or expertise. This can include hearing from Indigenous peoples, local government, industry and landowners.
At the end of the hearing, the NEB must determine whether the project is in the public interest taking into account a range of environmental, socio-economic, technical and economic considerations.
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