Compliance Verification Activity Report: CV2021-270 - Trans-Northern Pipelines Inc.

Overview

Compliance verification activity type: Field Inspection

Activity #: CV2021-270
Start date: 2020-11-02
End date: 2020-11-06

Team:

Regulated company: Trans-Northern Pipelines Inc.

Operating company: Trans-Northern Pipelines Inc.

Province(s) / Territory(s):

Discipline(s):

Related events:

Rationale and scope:

This field inspection spanned operations and maintenance, aboveground facilities, the right of way, and contaminated sites on the TNPI Mainline. The bulk of the inspection was in the Quebec region, but extended as far as Cornwall ON.

Compliance tool(s) used:

Facility details

Facilities:

Regulatory requirements

Regulatory requirements that apply to this activity:

Regulatory instrument number(s):

Observations (no outstanding follow-up required)

Observation 1 - #1 Aboveground Facilities General

Date & time of visit: 2020-11-03 09:35

Discipline: Environmental Protection

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

Inspection Officers (IOs) inspected seven aboveground facilities along the Mainline, including the:
Montreal Station
Dorval Terminal
Ste Rose Junction 
Como Station
Lancaster Station
Cornwall Station (block valve)
Gouin St block valve

The main themes of observations are summarized below, grouped by subject. 

1. Surface water management and containment systems (swales, berms, sumps, oil water separators, and surge tanks)
2. Hazardous Materials Storage3. Block Valves4. General Housekeeping5. Weed Management

 

Compliance tool used: No compliance tool used

Observation 2 - #2 Operations and Maintenance Activities

Date & time of visit: 2020-11-05 09:00

Discipline: Environmental Protection

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

Operations and Maintenance (O&M) activities were observed at four locations, each at a different stage of the process. Before the inspection began IO's requested TNPI's fall O&M schedule to assist with planning, which TNPI provided as requested. 

The first O&M site visited had been recently completed and the site restored to its pre-work condition. This site was a paved bike/pedestrian path in a residential area.

The second was active, with the crew on site. IO’s observed appropriate signage and personal protective equipment (PPE) being utilized by workers. No soil stockpiling or de-watering was taking place at the site. The TNPI Inspector demonstrated familiarity with TNPI’s procedures for environmental monitoring and specifically soil vapour monitoring. IOs requested to view the Environmental Protection Plan and contaminated soil screening form. Both were produced and being followed as intended.

The third and fourth O&M sites were in a farmers field, proximal to one another. The third was mid-way through reclamation while the fourth was in the initial prep stage. Soil handling, soil reclamation soil preservation (rig mats) were all observed to be managed appropriately at the time of the inspection.

IOs and TNPI representatives discussed TNPI’s pre-screening procedures, Environmental Protection Plans for O&M works, and also the Environmental Compliance Specialist’s oversight at O&M sites. The TNPI representative exhibited awareness of TNPI’s requirements and Processes, and sound technical awareness of the environmental issues that arise at O&M works. An example was provided, on request, of a site at which contamination was discovered during O&M work, and the process taken from the time of discovery described for IOs. No concerns noted at the O&M sites.
 

Compliance tool used: No compliance tool used

Observation 3 - #3 Surface Water Management and Containment System at Ste Rose Junction (IR #1)

Discipline: Environmental Protection

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

At the Ste Rose Junction, IOs requested additional information about the swale and spill containment system. IOs observed that this site is closely nestled between residences and the Rivière-des-Mille-Îles, making this a sensitive location. 

 

 

Compliance tool used: Information Request (IR)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

On 13 November, TNPI provided initial information on the company's plan to fix the Ste Rose swale over email.  IOs responded to TNPI's email on the same day (13 November 2020) with the following email to obtain more information about the Ste Rose Junction plans to improve the swale system:

"Hello,

Thanks for the information. I’m happy to see a quick turn around on Dorval Station non-compliance and speedy implementation of a solution.
 Regarding the work plan for the Ste-Rose Junction, we will need more details and firmer commitments with regards to timelines and action to be taken. The PO attached showed that it was cancelled and details are not really clear. There is no description of the assessment made by TNPI.
 Would it be possible to get the following details:

  1. What specific actions are to be undertaken at the Ste-Rose Junction with respect to the swale and surface water collection system?
  2. What is the firm timeline for the actions detailed in 1?.
  3. While considering the proximity to sensitive environmental features, what evaluations have been done with respect the swale and containment system capacity to contain product in the event of a failure at the junction?  When were those evaluation done? What was the scope and methodology of the evaluation?"

Due date: 2020-12-10

Date closed: 2020-12-15
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: Yes

Observation 4 - #4 General Right of Way and Contaminated Sites

Date & time of visit: 2020-11-04 14:30

Discipline: Environmental Protection

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

The Right of Way was observed in various urban and rural locations as well as at watercourse crossings. Watercourse crossings observed by IOs were indistinguishable from the surrounding environment, banks were stable and vegetated equivalently. No concerns noted at agricultural land uses of the Row, or urban uses.

At one location along the right of way, IO’s observed small trees and a makeshift garden within TNPI’s RoW. TNPI representatives followed up with the Field Services group and shared with IOs that this had been identified internally by TNPI and deemed to be acceptable. This observation has been shared with the CER's Damage Prevention Team. 

Two contaminated sites were inspected along the Mainline right of way in rural Quebec. The sites were free of garbage, maintained as expected, and groundwater sampling wells were appropriately secured. TNPI reported a brief summary of the history at each site and reported that there are no concerns with the relationships with landowners. No concerns noted; the detailed management of the contaminated site and CER oversight is being carried out outside of the Inspection Process (within the Remediation Process).   



 

Compliance tool used: No compliance tool used

Observation 5 - CNC #1 Hazardous Materials Storage

Date & time of visit: 2020-11-03 09:35

Discipline: Environmental Protection

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

During inspection of the Dorval Terminal, jet fuel cans were observed being stored on an open shelf in a sampling shed. The cans which contained flammable liquids were not stored with secondary containment, nor in a hazardous/fire-safe chemical cabinet. 

 

Compliance tool used: Corrected Non-compliance (CNC)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

TNPI shall move the jetfuel cans into appropriate storage as per TNPIs Chemical Management Procedure and provide evidence of the change. 

Due date: 2020-11-13

Date closed: 2020-11-13
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: Yes

Observation 6 - NNC #1 Mirabel Deactivated Station and Lateral

Date & time of visit: 2020-11-03 15:00

Discipline: Environmental Protection

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

The TNPI Mirabel Lateral and Mirabel Metering Station was approved by the National Energy Board for deactivation (12 January 2005) as described in Order MO-01-2005, pursuant to Section 44 of the Onshore Pipeline regulations. Since that time, the lateral line and the Metering Station have been in ‘deactivated’ status.

IO’s inspected the Mirabel Metering Station. The fence was in disrepair and the gate open, allowing people and wildlife to come in and out of the Metering Station freely. The TNPI station sign was broken, faded and illegible. Overgrown vegetation and weeds were pervasive within the station. Waste including broken glass was observed. The pipeline coating was corroded, and caps/seals were missing from the aboveground piping at various places. A monitoring well was observed with its cap off. Holes in the ground up to 1 m deep were left open, uncovered and with no signage. Overall, this station was unkempt and did not appear to be maintained in any way by TNPI. IO's identified a hissing sound which was gas escaping from the aboveground piping due to a missing nipple (which TNPI representatives had fixed immediately).

TNPI reported to IOs that the company intended to begin decomissioning of this station and the pipeline as well as to remediate the associated contaminated site in the near future.

Section 4 of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations requires compliance with CZ662-19, which stipulates details for maintenance and management of deactivated facilities in Clauses 10.15.1.2, 10.2.4, and 10.2.5.


 
 

 

Compliance tool used: Notice of Non-compliance (NNC)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

TNPI shall develop and submit to the CER a plan to come into compliance with OPR and CSA Z662 requirements, namely to:
a) manage potential hazards to people and wildlife in the area (Clause 10.2.4); and
b) manage the security of the pipeline (Clause 10.2.5).
Provide the dates which TNPI commits to have a) and b) completed.

A request for a Remedial Action Plan will be made for the Mirabel contaminated site outside of the Inspection Process - via the CER Remediation Process.

 
Though meeting these corrective actions will meet the requirement for the NNC for this Field Inspection, this non compliance will be referred to enforcement for potential additional enforcement action.


 

Due date: 2020-12-14

Date closed: 2020-12-15
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: No

Observation 7 - NNC #2 Cornwall Station Deactivation Status

Date & time of visit: 2020-11-05 15:00

Discipline: Environmental Protection

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

During the inspection of the Cornwall Station, IOs observed a metering station and block valve, as well as a sample shed and small office space building. TNPI shared that the Metering Station had been deactivated, and that the site is solely being used as a block station at present time. IOs requested confirmation of the Approval for deactivation of the meter station infrastructure. TNPI later confirmed via email that the company could not locate any documentation pertaining to the Approval for deactivation. IO's and TNPI both concluded this to mean that the deactivation of the Cornwall Station has not been approved by the Canada Energy Regulator, formerly by the National Energy Board.

Compliance tool used: Notice of Non-compliance (NNC)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

TNPI has acknowledged that the company will begin the process of applying for deactivation of the metering station at the Cornwall Station.

Since a deactivation process is outside of the scope and timelines of a field inspection, the corrective action herein will be for TNPI to submit a written declaration from the Officer of the Company which will:
1. Inform the CER that the facility is deactivated; and
2. commit TNPI to submit an application for approval by a specified due date which TNPI may propose.

Submission of these two action items would satisfy this Notice of Non Compliance for the field inspection, however, the matter will be referred to enforcement for potential further enforcement.

Due date: 2020-12-14

Date closed: 2020-12-15
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: No

Observations (company follow-up required)

Identified non-compliances to company plans or procedures are non-compliances either to:

- the condition of an authorization document that requires the implementation of that plan or procedure; or

- the relevant section of the regulations that requires implementation of that plan or procedure including those sections that require implementation of plans or procedures as a part of a Program