Transition Binder for Minister of Natural Resources

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Letter from Chief Executive Officer and Chairperson

26 October 2021

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Natural Resources
580 Booth Street, 21st Floor, Room C7-1
Ottawa, ON K1A 0E4

Dear Minister:

On behalf of the dedicated public servants who make up the Canada Energy Regulator (CER), we would like to congratulate you on your appointment as Minister of Natural Resources.

The CER is Canada’s federal energy regulator, working to keep energy moving safely across the country. The CER regulates infrastructure to ensure safe and efficient delivery of energy to Canada and the world, protecting the environment, recognizing and respecting the rights of the Indigenous peoples of Canada, and providing timely and relevant energy information and analysis.

We have been tasked to build an energy regulatory system that inspires trust and public confidence on behalf of Canadians. The CER’s core responsibilities are what grounds our work, and the expected results are:

  • Energy adjudication processes are fair, timely, transparent, and accessible;
  • We prevent harm to people and the environment throughout the lifecycle of energy related activities;
  • Canadians have access to relevant energy and pipeline information for knowledge, research or decision-making;
  • Feedback provided by stakeholders and Indigenous peoples informs our decisions and our work;
  • The right governance, resources, management systems, programs and services are in place to deliver on our program results.

This past year saw the release of the CER’s first Strategic Plan. Our Strategic Priorities of Trust and Confidence, Reconciliation, Competitiveness, and Data and Digital Innovation are the shared lens that focus our work within our core responsibilities.

The CER is a Board of Directors-governed departmental corporation that operates with a level of day-to-day independence from the Department of Natural Resources. However, the organization is ultimately accountable to you, as Minister, and supports your accountability to the Prime Minister and to Parliament for the CER’s overall performance. The attached memorandum contains more detail on the CER’s mandate and governance structure.

There are a number of time-sensitive priority issues for the CER that you will want to be aware of.

  1. We plan to release the CER’s flagship publication Canada’s Energy Future 2021: Energy Supply and Demand Projections to 2050 in late November/early December. This annual publication receives significant mediaattention.
  2. Under the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, the CER became an Agent of the Crown and the Crown Consultation Coordinator for certain mid-sized, CER- regulated projects. This has shifted roles and responsibilities for both the CER and Natural Resources Canada.
  3. The CER anticipates conducting engagement with Indigenous peoples and stakeholders on important and wide-ranging amendments to two regulations in the coming months. This includes engagement on the CER’s principal regulation for environmental and safety oversight of pipelines, Onshore Pipeline Regulations, and the Cost Recovery Regulations.
  4. The Board and Commission of the CER are comprised of Governor in Council appointees, as is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Several appointments will end in the coming year and will require your attention.

As you know, the CER continues to oversee the Trans Mountain Expansion Project and the Line 3 Replacement Program and over the past year we have made significant progress in how we do this in partnership with their respective Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees. This work is helping to shape and guide our broader approach to incorporating Indigenous perspectives into our monitoring and oversight activities.

We look forward to ongoing work with you in the fulfillment of our shared objectives and to an early meeting and opportunity to brief you on our priority issues.

Best regards,

Gitane De Silva
Chief Executive Officer
Cassie J. Doyle
Chairperson of the Board of Directors
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