When a project may cause significant adverse environmental effects or there is a high degree of public concern, a project can be referred to a joint review panel process. The Minister of the Environment decided that the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project would be assessed using a joint review panel.
Panel members will conduct a public process where they will receive and consider all the information on the record. The record will include information submitted by the project proponent and other participants. The review process will include a formal information request process on the application and oral hearing sessions. Further details about the review process will be provided in the Hearing Order to be issued by the Panel.
Based on the record, the Panel will produce a report that contains all the information for the environmental assessment as well as the Panel’s recommendations regarding whether the Project should be approved and the reasons for this recommendation. The report will also include terms and conditions that the applicant must implement if the Project is approved.
The Panel’s report is submitted to the Governor in Council who will make the decision on the environmental assessment (whether the project is likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects and if so, whether such effects are justified in the circumstances). The Governor in Council will also decide, by order, whether the National Energy Board should issue a certificate and will give reasons for the order.
The Panel's mandate is described in the Joint Review Panel Agreement. The Agreement includes the terms of reference for the panel and procedures for conducting the joint review process.
For more details, please see the Joint Review Panel Agreement, including the Terms of Reference, and the backgrounder on the Agreement.