National Energy Board to take further action on Land Matters



    CALGARY, May 26 /CNW/ - The National Energy Board (NEB) has approved the
final report of the Land Matters Consultation Initiative (LMCI) and has
outlined an action plan for addressing concerns raised during the consultation
process.
    Some of the NEB actions include continuing the dialogue with industry and
landowner representatives through regular meetings as a one-year pilot
project, increasing the monitoring of company performance and providing
further direction on expectations for company public involvement programs. The
NEB will also increase its communication and outreach efforts in addition to
improving accessibility in the public hearing process. NEB staff will begin
work on the implementation of the action plan this summer.
    "The NEB is committed to continuing the good work that LMCI started,"
said Gaétan Caron, NEB Chair. "This action plan will extend the NEB's
regulatory approach to socio-economic, land and consultation matters that it
already applies to safety, security and environmental protection in the public
interest."
    The LMCI provided a forum for all interested parties and the NEB to
discuss issues and generate options to support the long-term responsible
development of the energy sector, while respecting the rights and interests of
those affected. It was an extensive process that included the NEB hosting 45
meetings and workshops in 25 communities across Canada. Topics considered
through the forum were divided into four streams:

    
    1.  Company interactions with landowners;
    2.  Improving the accessibility of NEB processes;
    3.  Pipeline abandonment - financial issues; and
    4.  Pipeline abandonment - physical issues.
    

    Streams 1, 2 and 4 are included in the final report. Stream 3 was handled
as an oral hearing in January 2009 and the Stream 3 decision was released by
the NEB on 26 May. The report says pipeline companies regulated under the NEB
act must set aside funds to pay for abandonment.
    "We're proud of the LMCI achievements and we thank everyone who
participated in the process," said Caron. "We look forward to working with
parties on the implementation of the action plan."

    Celebrating 50 years of regulatory leadership, the NEB is an independent
federal agency that regulates several parts of Canada's energy industry. Its
purpose is to promote safety and security, environmental protection, and
efficient energy infrastructure and markets in the Canadian public interest,
within the mandate set by Parliament in the regulation of pipelines, energy
development and trade.

    This news release and the Final Report are available on the Board's
Internet site at www.neb-one.gc.ca under What's New!





For further information:

For further information: Kristen Higgins, Communications Officer, Email:
kristen.higgins@neb-one.gc.ca, Telephone: (403) 299-3122; For a copy of the
report: National Energy Board, Library, Ground Floor, 444 Seventh Avenue SW,
Calgary, Alberta, T2P 0X8, Telephone: (403) 299-3561, Telephone (toll free):
1-800-899-1265, Telecopier: (403) 292-5576, Telecopier (toll free):
1-877-288-8803, E-mail: library@neb-one.gc.ca


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