Compliance Verification Activity Report: CV2223-185 - NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd.


Compliance verification activity type: Field Inspection

Activity #: CV2223-185
Start date: 2022-12-05
End date: 2022-12-08


Regulated company: NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd.

Operating company: TransCanada PipeLines Limited

Province(s) / Territory(s):


Rationale and scope:

Groundbirch Mainline Loop Sunrise Section. NGTL anticipates mainline construction to commence in Q2/Q3 of 2022 in order to meet the April 2023 in-service date. This project was previously delayed with the latest update filed as C13197.

Compliance tool(s) used:

Facility details


Regulatory requirements

Regulatory requirements that apply to this activity:

Regulatory instrument number(s):

Observations (no outstanding follow-up required)

Observation 1 - General Observations

Date & time of visit: 2022-12-06 10:00

Discipline: Environmental Protection




Construction Yard and Warehouse

KP 23.5
KP 20+873
KP 17-18
KP 14+0 
KP 11+716
HDD Yard (Entry site)
HDD Yard (Exit Site)
KP 3+519

Compliance tool used: No compliance tool used

Observation 2 - Indigenous Monitor Observations

Date & time of visit: 2022-12-06 09:00

Discipline: Environmental Protection





The week of December 5th 2022 , the Canadian Energy Regulator (CER) conducted a Environmental Inspection Compliance Verification Activity (CVA) on the NGTL Groundbirch Section. The emphasis of the inspections scope is the proponent’s construction activities and environmental compliance activities.

Safety program requirements, other issues of non-compliance related to other program
requirements will be appropriately addressed.


2.1 Construction Safety Practices and Safety Plans

Orientation at Surerus Murphy Joint Venture (SMJV) construction yard for introduction and to discuss daily activities happening on the Right of Way (ROW). Project footprint is 95% free hold and 5% on crown land.

Inspection of SMJV yard and warehouse, where the solar farm sea can was set up. This solar farm supplies the mobile warehouse with most of its power using a back up generator if needed. Great idea for reducing greenhouse gas and emissions on a project. No deficiencies to report in yard.

Travel to kick off point to start main line environment audit. We walked around laydown area of the ROW and found two deficiencies. First was a pipe end cap off ROW. Project owner retrieved and placed in truck for disposal. The second deficiency was that noxious weeds were not stored in an isolated area. CER lead indicated that the EPP should be referenced.

2.2 Wetlands and Water

Travelled ROW to water course one (WC-1) where the construction company installed a clear span bridge over water crossing. The construction crew did an amazing job on this bridge installation.

Stopped at the exit side of the HDD drill site to observe the Frac out just off the HDD drill pad. Site was setup with mitigation measures to protect if frac out happens again. Approximately 35,000 liters of drill mud was recovered, set to a disposal facility. Berms and
poly remain on the field as frac out clean up is incomplete.

Travelled water course three (WC-3) where the construction company performed open trench and reclamation on water course. A member of the project owner explained the reclamation process and how the riparian was contoured further away from the water course
for spring run off.

2.4 Vegetation and Soil

Continuing down the ROW we stopped to observe the blue listed shrub isolated for safe keeping. This shrub is a rare willow plant.

2.6 Traditional Knowledge/Traditional Land Use

This section of the project has archeological areas and one traditional land use site identified but is approx. 85m off the ROW and is only in the Environmental Protection Plan (EPP) in case a temporary workspace is needed.


No non-compliance issues.


Close out meeting. CER auditor opened meeting with how well the project looked and there were only a few topics to discuss. Two positive highlights were expressed during the meeting.

An information request was issued for the definition of the word “separation” in the EPP. A question was then asked about the timeline for burying pipe. This due to the lengthy stretches of welded pipe which do not have wildlife breaks in it nor do they conjoin with the animal breaks in the berm. The CER auditor stated there is a good case for returning during reclamation and when snow is gone to evaluate the Frac out at HDD drill site. The owner and audit team determined that the EPP is a cut and paste document and really needs to be more specific to the demographic area.

The owner did suggest we get a copy of the construction companies SITE SPECIFIC ENVIRONMENT PLAN for future reference. Cultural and archeology site criteria need to be more specific to each topic as well. Both owner and contractor have a nice, clean, and well-maintained project and was a delight to see. Wildlife has maintained its footprint on the project and remains in the area.


Compliance tool used: No compliance tool used

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