Canada’s water is precious – and we are working hard to protect it

As Canadians, we know how important our oceans, rivers and lakes are. We all enjoy them differently, but whether you like to relax by dropping a line in a crystal clear lake on a holiday weekend; cool down by jumping off a dock on a hot summer day; or make your living fishing, Canadians know that protecting waterways is important.

As an industry, we understand how important it is to protect our fish and their underwater habitats. Not only are they an important part of Canada’s diverse ecosystem, but for approximately 80,000 Canadians who make their living directly from fishing and fishing-related activities, protecting waterways is about more than recreational activities – there are livelihoods on the line. And for Indigenous peoples, fisheries play an even wider cultural and socio-economic role.

That’s why CEPA members use their safety, engineering and environmental expertise to operate pipelines near waterways in the safest and most responsible way.

Committed to Continuous Improvement

Knowledge and focus on waterways is always improving. In 2016, the federal Fisheries Act was revised with an increased emphasis on protecting fish, with a closer eye on the sustainability of all fisheries.

CEPA is responding. Along with the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers and the Canadian Gas Association, we are collaborating to update the Pipeline Associated Watercourse Crossing practices document.

It contains science-based guidelines that help pipeline companies understand and share their knowledge of how to design and maintain pipelines around waterways.

What this means for you

When planning a new project, pipeline companies are committed to finding the route that will ensure Canadians get the energy they need in the safest and most responsible way.

This includes completing environmental assessments along the proposed route and its surrounding area to identify environmental features that must be protected, including fish habitat.

Not only are technical aspects considered, but also socio-economic and environmental factors. Proposed routes are often adjusted to avoid important and sensitive habitats.

Revisions to the CEPA document will be made with input from Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and other experts. It will be the fifth edition of the watercourse crossing practices document, and will be released later in 2017.

Be sure to read our blog on how CEPA members protect waterways and see our 2017 Transmission Pipeline Industry Performance Report for more information on how CEPA members are working to protect the environment.