Canada’s National Energy Board may consider opening its hearings on the controversial Energy East pipeline to the general public.
The NEB was in Halifax this week, part of a listening tour announced late last year “to hear from Canadians on how the Board can improve its pipeline safety program,” according to Chair Peter Watson. In Halifax, Board representatives met with the Maritimes Energy Association, petroleum engineering students at Halifax’s Dalhousie University, the deputy fire chief from Antigonish, Nova Scotia, and the Ecology Action Centre.
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“But Stop Energy East Halifax said the invite-only meetings should be open to the public,” iPolitics reports. “Spokeswoman Evelien VanderKloet said other people affected by the project, including First Nations groups and property owners along its route, should be included.”
Spokesperson Ted Neufeld said the NEB hadn’t ruled out public meetings, but wasn’t sure at first whether the public would be interested. “Quite frankly, we just didn’t know if people would come,” he said. But if the interest is there, “we’re willing to meet with Canadians in their kitchens.”
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