Indigenous Advisory Committee Meeting Summaries and Minutes

Meeting Summary: November 29–30, 2023

The Canada Energy Regulator’s (CER) Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) and Board of Directors (Board) held an in-person joint meeting on 29 and 30 November 2023. It was opened with a prayer from Elder Art Cunningham from the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III followed by welcoming remarks from the IAC Chair. Roundtable introductions were made to welcome the new Board Directors and Committee Member, along with invited guests, to the CER.

IAC Leadership gave an update on communication, engagement, and other activities they undertook since the last meeting. The IAC Vice-Chair highlighted leadership participation in the Line Wide Gatherings (LWGs) for both the Trans Mountain Expansion Project and Line 3 Replacement Project Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs). The Board Vice-Chairperson provided updates on Board discussions and activities, while the Acting CEO highlighted key operational updates of interest to the IAC that occurred since the last meeting in October 2023. Throughout the updates, participants reaffirmed the importance of incorporating First Nations, Inuit, and Métis specific perspectives into the work of the CER to facilitate relationship building, particularly related to cultural competency and change management initiatives.

The Board, IAC and senior staff had a discussion about recent Commission decisions, including references in the decisions to Indigenous rights and interests, particularly related to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration). Information shared was that which was already available on the public record. IAC members highlighted the importance of protecting Indigenous sites of significance.

The Executive Vice President, Transparency and Strategic Engagement, provided an introduction of external experts engaged to aid the CER in implementing the UN Declaration into the mandate of the CER and next steps for implementing the UN Declaration Action Plan Measure (APM) 34. APM 34 is a commitment for Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) and the CER to work in consultation and cooperation with First Nation, Métis and Inuit communities, governments and organizations to enhance Indigenous involvement in regulatory decision-making. Varying views were shared on next steps for APM 34 and further discussions will occur over the next months and at the next quarterly meeting.

On the second day, the Executive Vice President, People, Innovation and Results, led conversation with the IAC and Board on the CER strategic planning process as the organization undertakes the development of the 2024–2027 Strategic Plan. Key advice focused on explicit reference to constitutionally protected rights being recognized in the vision/mission of the strategic plan to reiterate its importance to the work of the CER.

There was brief discussion around the IAC’s Terms of Reference, with minor adjustments proposed and accepted as part of its annual review to align with the working experience of the IAC. Parallel to the conversations around the CER’s Strategic Plan, the IAC and Board had a substantial discussion around potential priorities and next steps for the IAC’s next Work Plan. Of note, views around tracking progress versus success were also voiced.

In reflecting back on the discussions of the last two days, Board Directors and Committee members acknowledged the difficulty in discussing certain subject matter however, overall, participants expressed appreciation for the space to have difficult conversations in a manner that reinforced and strengthened their relationships while tackling problems collaboratively.

The meeting concluded with closing remarks from the Board Chairperson and IAC Vice-Chairperson who wished everyone well.

Meeting Summary: October 3–4, 2023

The Canada Energy Regulator’s (CER) Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) held a virtual meeting on 3 and 4 October 2023. It was opened with a prayer from Elder Art Cunningham from the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III followed by welcoming remarks from the IAC Vice-Chair.

IAC Leadership gave an update on communication, engagement, and other activities they undertook since the last meeting. The Vice-Chair made note of the release of the second annual IAC Progress and Impact report, ongoing discussions with the CER related to strategic planning, and highlighted upcoming opportunities for Committee members to engage with the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs). The Board Chairperson provided updates on Board discussions and activities, while the Acting CEO highlighted key operational updates of interest to the IAC that occurred since the last meeting in June 2023. Throughout the updates, participants discussed the importance of incorporating a First Nations, Inuit, and Métis specific perspectives into the work of the CER to facilitate relationship building.

The Executive Vice President, People, Innovation and Results, led conversation with the IAC on the CER strategic planning process as the organization undertakes the development of the 2024–27 Strategic Plan. Key advice included the continued priority of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) within the Strategic Plan and addition of cultural intelligence and respect for right concepts. The plan should also acknowledge that there are diverse perspectives of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Nations.

Parallel to the conversations around the CER’s Strategic Plan, the IAC had a substantial discussion looking back on the progress of the Committee to date and potential markers of success in terms of the IAC’s impact both internal and external to the CER. This preliminary conversation helps to set the stage for a continuation of the discussion at the next IAC meeting to set out the parameters of work priorities and focus for the development of the 2024–27 IAC Work Plan.

On the second day, the IAC heard updates from the Professional Leader Reconciliation on the CER’s efforts to implement the UN Declaration, including the Action Plan Measures, into the organization’s mandate and ongoing discussions on the renewal of the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs). Both discussions reiterated the importance of early and substantial involvement of the IAMCs and impacted groups in the development process of these initiatives.

The IAC also received an update on the Energy Futures 2023 report, including underlying assumptions for modeling, reception of the report, and communication strategies utilized. Committee members expressed interest and excitement in the energy transition implications and noted the importance of exploring ways to incorporate First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Nations involvement and perspectives in the net-zero transitions process.

In reflecting back on the discussions of the last two days, Committee members were encouraged with the direction of work at the CER.

The meeting concluded with a roundtable and closing remarks from the IAC Vice-Chair who wished everyone well.

Meeting Minutes October 3–4, 2023

Day 1: IAC October 3, 2023

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Vice-Chair called the meeting to order. The Chief of Staff provided a land acknowledgement from the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.

The meeting opened with a prayer from Elder Art Cunningham from Métis Nation of Alberta Region 3. He thanked the Committee for their work influencing the processes for regulations in the energy sector.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The Associate General Counsel and Committee members briefly discussed the adjudicative independence of the CER Commission and IAC Terms of Reference that note that the IAC does not deal with specific projects nor offers advice on any particular decision. There was also discussion on leveraging lessons learned. The Acting Chief of Staff provided an overview of the meeting agenda, and it was accepted via consensus.

The IAC minutes from June 14-15, 2023 were approved.

Item 3: IAC Leadership Update

This standing item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4.

This standing item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4. The IAC Vice-Chair noted that the written update summarized the communication, engagement and other activities that IAC leadership undertook since the last IAC meeting. The IAC Vice-Chair made note of the release of the second annual IAC Progress and Impact report highlighting tangible instances where IAC guidance is driving positive change within the organization. The Vice-Chair also noted ongoing discussions with the CER related to strategic planning, and highlighted upcoming opportunities for Committee members to engage with the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs). The IAC Chair noted the general intentions for streamlining the development of the next iteration of the IAC Work Plan, which would be further discussed with IAC members during this meeting.

Item 4: CER Leadership Update   Updates from the Board Chair and CER CEO

This standing item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3.

The Board Chair provided a few updates noting that two new directors joined the Board and were looking forward to meeting the IAC at the upcoming in-person meeting in November. He indicated that the Board, similar to the IAC, would be seeking to streamline the next iteration of the Board’s work plan and how both work plans would seek to align and compliment the CER’s strategic plan. He noted his planned attendance at upcoming meetings in Ottawa and the IAMC Line Wide Gatherings taking place and provided a brief update on the Board Regular and Committee meetings last week.

The Acting CEO highlighted a few updates related to CER operational activities as they pertain to the IAC’s work plan priorities, including changes in leadership at the CER level, and ongoing work on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) Action Plan Measures (APM) and the implementation of the CER’s Diversity and Belonging Roadmap. In terms of engagement with Indigenous partners the Acting CEO highlighted work related to the renewal of the IAMCs, attendance at the IAMC Line Wide Gatherings, Phase 2 engagement of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations Review, and development of an oversight forum for the Nova Gas Transmission Ltd. System (NGTL).

The discussion included:

  • The importance of having a specific First Nations, Inuit, and Métis approach when looking at the diversity and belonging work that the CER is undertaking.
  • The sharing of timelines and processes for projects under consideration by the CER with Committee members for awareness.
  • Considering new language to describe how to work together, going beyond the word consultation.

Item 5: Strategic Planning for 2024–2027

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #7.

The Executive Vice President, People, Innovation and Results, led and directed conversation to seek advice from the IAC on what considerations to account for as the CER undertakes the development of its 2024-2027 Strategic Plan.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Include the concept of cultural intelligence, which incorporates cultural competency and integrity, and ensure the plan recognizes the diversity of perspectives of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Nations.
  • Make fundamental the respect for Indigenous rights (particularly those of rights holders)
  • The use of the term Reconciliation was felt to be overused by some, however appreciated by others. Reference the United Nations Declaration Act Action Plan in the description of the Reconciliation strategic priority to increase clarity and specificity of the priority. Consider incorporating direct reference to action plan measure 34 in subsequent work under this priority.
  • Broad appreciation for the energy transition strategic priority and to consider including references to Environmental Social Governance (ESG) and Net Zero aspects.
  • CER should consider including in its strategy being deliberate about its intent to lead by example and influence other Federal and Provincial partners and regulators – e.g., embrace and use the Crown Consultation Coordinator role and other levers to drive transformative change not only in the CER-regulated sector, but within the broader energy sector as well.
  • Enabling, enhancing, improving are overused words   aim higher to provide substance and concrete commitments with which Indigenous partners can work.

Discussion also included:

  • On the relationship between the IAC and CER broadly, to progress to a point where the organization is confident in moving forward with initiatives while providing space for incorporating the feedback of Committee members should there be a need to revise or change the direction of work.

Item 6: Orienting towards IAC Work Plan 2024–27

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #5.

The Professional Leader, Reconciliation led and directed a preliminary conversation to seek advice from the IAC for developing the IAC Work Plan 2024–27 including discussion of areas of focus going forward, desired impact of the IAC and how success is measured. In the presentation, the PL Reconciliation grouped the feedback and advice received to date from the IAC into four general categories: relationships, cultural intelligence, advice, and governance. Strategic Advice received on the four themes are as follows:

  • Relationships – the outward communication of work done to date by the IAC should reiterate the commitment to the relationship with communities and be reflective of the learning to date.
  • Cultural intelligence – taking a distinctions-based approach refers to the systemic reform needed to further build cultural integrity into the CER and requires empowering and enabling the inclusion of Indigenous people in energy regulation at all levels. Relationship building requires a better understanding of each other and should be viewed as a duty and responsibility to ensure everyone benefits in the future, not just one entity.
  • Advice – language should be expanded to highlight the relationship aspect of the IAC with the CER, not just advice that is provided.
  • Governance – in addition to the relationship that the IAC has with the CER’s other governance bodies, a missing aspect is how the IAC can support improved relationships between the CER and rights holders.

During this preliminary discussion, IAC members provided reflection and strategic advice to orient towards the next iteration of the IAC Work Plan. Discussion focused in three areas: how Committee members view success, ideally what the impact the IAC would have internally and externally, and potential areas of focus for the 2024–2027 Work Plan.

Markers of Success

Potential markers of success discussed included:

  • Attaining a positive general awareness of the IAC and its work amongst Indigenous nations and communities;
  • When Committee members can recognize where and how input was incorporated to influence high level change and policy development;
  • Strong relationships; and
  • Ability to demonstrate that the CER has a deep understanding of (treaty and asserted) rights.

Impact of the IAC

  • Ideally, the IAC would become a driving force and source of inspiration to support the energy transition and Indigenous involvement. Particularly in aspects of economic inclusion and self-determination for Indigenous peoples in the energy transition.
  • The work of the IAC influences changes beyond the CER; setting a strong and persuasive example for others in working together with Indigenous Peoples.

Areas of Focus

  • Support for a more focused work plan that recognizes the CER’s growing Indigenous capacity and looks at high-level systemic opportunities to provide advice on matters that tangibly impact the CER and the implementation of the UN Declaration.
  • Building up a connection with provinces and territories.
  • Opportunities to provide advice on front line technical initiatives (e.g., Onshore Pipeline Regulations and filing manual).
  • Examine methodologies and initiatives designed to build up the capacity of Indigenous nations and partners.

The following additional strategic advice was provided:

  • Once the CER Strategic Plan has been approved by the Board, the IAC would revisit potential areas of focus for the 2024–27 IAC Work Plan. This supports alignment and focus between the CER, including the Board, and the IAC.
  • To discuss with the Board their views on what the ideal impact of the IAC could be. Having this discussion reiterates the importance of the relationship between Board and IAC members.
  • Updates on key CER initiatives should be provided to the IAC to ensure participation, input and advice from the IAC is provided in a timely manner.

Day 2: IAC October 4, 2023

Item 7: Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The IAC Chair opened the meeting and welcomed IAC members back to the meeting. The Board Chair walked through the agenda and plan for the day.

Item 8: Implementation of the UN Declaration in the CER Mandate

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the UN Declaration Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #9-13.

  • The Professional Leader, Reconciliation provided an overview of work that has taken place since the June meetings, including the transition of the file internally from the legal services unit to the transparency and strategic engagement team, updates on the UN Declaration Action Plan Measures (APM) and efforts to advance engagement with experts on the UN Declaration.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • The IAMCs must be involved and connected throughout the collaborative development of the initiatives under APM 34.
  • The CER should examine methods (including working with the IAMCs) for pushing the pace of work to be an example for others to follow rather than matching the pace of other departments.
  • Working with the Board, the IAC would like to understand how the Committee will be involved in the APM 34 development process, including objectives and timeframes for collaboration.
  • Providing adequate time and space to prepare for and have meaningful discussions is vital.

Item 9: Update on Indigenous Peoples’ Involvement in Regulatory Oversight

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Indigenous peoples’ involvement in regulatory oversight Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #18.

The Professional Leader, Reconciliation provided an update on the renewal of the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMC) and went over the presentation in detail.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Despite the pressure of timelines, the CER should place importance on ensuring fulsome engagement with the IAMCs on the proposal.
  • A document outlining the pros and cons of transitioning the secretariat from one organization to another should be prepared to enable informed discussion amongst impacted parties.
  • The CER should consider broadening the audience for who to engage in this discussion beyond the named parties in the terms of reference of both Committees.

Item 10: Energy Futures 2023

This Item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #3.

The CER’s Chief Economist provided an overview of the highlights of the Energy Futures 2023 Report (including response to the report, communication strategy, etc.).

Discussion included:

  • How the CER could consider enabling the meaningful inclusion of Indigenous perspectives in the energy transition to influence industry practices.
  • Understanding the underlying assumptions used for the modeling presented in the report.
  • How Canada’s performance and projected energy use compares internationally.

Item 11: Roundtable

This Item was for discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #5

IAC members went into a roundtable discussion to reflect on the meeting that took place and potential items for consideration moving forward. Overall, Committee members felt that they were provided with sufficient room and space to delve deeper into topics for fulsome discussion and felt encouraged with the direction of work at the CER. The IAC was keenly interested in seeing how they could be involved and contribute to the work related to energy futures and the energy transition discussion at the CER.

Item 12: Closing Remarks

The IAC Vice-Chairperson ended the second and final day of meetings with closing remarks, thanked everyone for their participation in continuing to build a positive relationship amongst one another and with the CER.

Meeting Summary: June 14–15, 2023

The Canada Energy Regulator’s (CER) Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) held a hybrid meeting at CER offices on 14 and 15 June 2023. The majority of the meeting was a joint meeting between the IAC and CER Board of Directors (Board). It was opened with a story from Elder Paul Bercier from the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III followed by welcoming remarks from the IAC Chair. The CEO and departing members of the IAC were honoured with gifts to thank them for their service.

A facilitator led a conversation between the IAC and Board on the CER strategic planning process as the organization undertakes the development of the 2024–2027 Strategic Plan. The session provided an early opportunity to provide input into the planning process. Key advice included the continued priority of the United Nations Declaration in the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) within the Strategic Plan.

IAC Leadership gave an update on communication, engagement, and other activities they undertook since the last meeting. Included was information on the Vice-Chair’s talk at CAMPUT 2023 in Toronto. The Indigenous Caucus Co-Chairs of the Line 3 Replacement Project (Line 3) and Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMX) Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs) joined the meeting and also provided an update on their respective committees.

Staff provided an overview and background presentation on the fundamentals of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR). The presentation covered the CER’s Regulatory Framework and Onshore Pipeline Regulations, an overview of OPR compliance tools and planning, context surrounding the current OPR review, and next steps.

The IAC also heard from staff on the key points of the Review and Learn that the Crown Consultation team undertook on the NGTL West Path Delivery 2023 Project. An Elder from Ermineskin Cree Nation attended and provided her perspectives, concerns and expectations regarding consultation.

On the second day, the Board Chair provided updates from recent discussions of the Board, including the positive impact of the IAC on the Board and CER, and noted the evolving way that IAC advice is responded to. The CEO offered operational updates related to a variety of topics that align with the IAC’s Work Plan priorities, including ongoing work related to Indigenous engagement mechanisms and how IAC advice has been incorporated into the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) review process and Filing Manual update.

A draft of the IAC Annual Progress and Impact Report was generally endorsed which incorporated the feedback provided during the March meetings and a meeting with the Vice-Chair. Further, the final year of the 2021–24 IAC Work Plan was confirmed.

The CER’s General Counsel provided an overview of work that has taken place since the March meetings on the implementation of the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, including the Action Plan Measure co-developed between the CER, TMX-IAMC and Natural Resources Canada as well as advancing engagement with experts on the UN Declaration.

Discussions over the two days touched on the need to be in the field and connect with communities, as well as spending more time together as the IAC and with the Board. The importance of the emotions of Indigenous peoples and what reconciliation feels, sounds and looks like was also considered. Additionally, the need to understand each other, share world views and build trust was often raised during the meeting.

The meeting concluded with a roundtable and closing remarks from the IAC Chair who wished everyone well.

I, the undersigned, hereby certify these to be the minutes of the Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee and Board-IAC meetings held 14-15 June 2023.

Original signed by
______________________________
Chair of the IAC

Signed on 13 October 2023

Original signed by
______________________________
Chair of the Board of Directors
For Joint Board-IAC Meeting Only

Signed on 14 June 2023

Original signed by
______________________________
Chief of Staff and Corporate Secretary

Signed on 14 June 2023

 
Joint Board of Directors and
Indigenous Advisory Committee Meeting
(14 June 2023, Morning; 15 June 2023)
Indigenous Advisory Committee Meeting
(14 June 2023, Afternoon)

Day 1: Joint Board-IAC, Wednesday Morning, 14 June 2023

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chair called the meeting to order.

The meeting opened with a story from Elder Paul Bercier from the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III, who was introduced by staff from the Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation team. Elder Bercier presented the IAC and Board Chairs with a book on the history of the Métis Nation.

The Chair of the Board provided a land acknowledgement from where the meeting took place, on the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.

The IAC Chair provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting. The Chair, Vice-Chair, and Harvey McLeod honoured Dr. Marie Delorme with an eagle feather that will continue its journey with her as her term on the committee ends. The IAC Vice-Chair, on behalf of IAC members, honoured Gitane De Silva with a blanket ceremony to thank her for her service as CEO of the CER.

To mark Indigenous History Month, the IAC Vice-Chair presented attendees with a gift of tea from Anishinaabe territory.

Harvey McLeod presented the Chair of the Board with a beaded lanyard and gifted a drum to the CER to keep in the Elder’s Room for use in future ceremonies.

Jessica Bratty, facilitator, led the group into an opening activity including inviting participants to introduce themselves and shared one or two words that represent key opportunity for the CER in its work to advance reconciliation.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The Acting Chief of Staff provided an overview of the meeting agenda, and it was accepted via consensus.

Ray Cardinal Indigenous Caucus Co-Chair of the Transmountain Expansion Indigenous Advisory Committees (IAMC) and Richard Aisaican Indigenous Caucus Co-Chairs of the Line 3 IAMCs introduced themselves to the group.

Item 3: Strategic Planning for 2024–2027

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #7.

The facilitator led and directed conversation to seek advice from the IAC on what considerations to account for as the CER undertakes the development of its 2024–2027 Strategic Plan.

Discussion included:

  • The importance of the incorporation of the United Nations Declaration in the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) in the Strategic Plan and federal laws.
  • The evolution of expectations for companies regarding engagement with Indigenous Peoples.
  • The IAC’s influence on the CER and, by extension, Ottawa.
  • The importance of continuing to share world views at all levels of the organization and government.
  • The flow of information from lessons learned on the ground to the Board and to federal and provincial government organizations.
  • The role of the IAC as it relates to the Strategic Plan.
  • The National Indigenous Economic Strategy (June 2022) may be a source of inspiration for exploring ways to report on process.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Indigenous world views should be incorporated across the Strategic Plan not just in one area.

Day 1: IAC, Wednesday Afternoon, 14 June 2023

Item 4: IAC Leadership Update

This standing item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4.

The IAC Chair and Vice-Chair summarized the communication, engagement and other activities they undertook since the last IAC meeting. Discussions pertaining to leadership meetings and CER activities were shared throughout the meeting.

This item included a brief discussion of the Vice-Chair’s talk at CAMPUT 2023 in Toronto and of a previous discussion with the Co-Chairs of the Line 3 and TMX IAMCs. In addition, updates were provided on progress towards a nominee from the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami (ITK) to take part in the IAC, bilateral meetings between the Board and IAC Chairs, and upcoming agenda items.

Item 5: Learning and sharing item / Onshore Pipeline Regulations 101

This item was for learning and sharing and advances the Indigenous Peoples’ Involvement in Regulatory Oversight Work Priority, Deliverable #18.

The Director, Regulatory Policy, and her team provided an overview and background presentation on the fundamentals of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR). The presentation covered the CER’s Regulatory Framework and OPR, an overview of OPR compliance tools and planning, context surrounding the current OPR review, and next steps.

Discussion included:

  • The need for the OPR to focus on the public interest beyond the legal bare minimum when it comes to applying s.35 rights and the UN Declaration.
  • Involvement of Indigenous people in risk identification and management for issues such as protection of the environment and significant sites of interest during the construction, operation and abandonment phases of a project.
  • The incorporation of Indigenous worldviews into the OPR.
  • Exploring mechanisms to prioritize monitoring of operating and abandoned pipelines as they are a concern to communities.
  • The protection of heritage resources and sites of significant interest, including the graves of Indigenous peoples noting that regulations for certain provinces do not protect these.
  • The suggestion to use critical race theory to examine current processes.

Item 6: Crown Consultation and Accommodation

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Crown Consultation and Accommodation Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #21.

The Acting Executive Vice President, Transparency and Strategic Engagement and the Director, Crown Consultation, summarized the key points of the Review and Learn that the Crown Consultation Coordinator (CCC) team undertook on the NGTL West Path Delivery 2023 Project. They also provided an overview of the newly enhanced funding mechanisms available at the CER. Elder Carol Wildcat of Ermineskin Cree Nation was invited by the CCC to offer feedback on how the Crown consultation process worked for its community. Elder Wildcat expressed that she is a keeper of Mother Earth laws in her community in which the Creator brought her to the meeting to speak the truth of her ancestors and future generations.

Discussion included:

  • Elder Carol Wildcat’s feedback included:
    • The need to involve nations from the beginning prior to Applications being submitted to the CER. Being involved, and having reliable information, early in the process is critical.
    • The need for Indigenous peoples to have meaningful project information early in the process.
    • Cumulative effects from development to First Nations since first contact need to be considered.
    • Recognition that having an advisory committee in place is a positive step forward, but that these committees should meet and introduce themselves to Indigenous communities.
    • Reinforcement that Indigenous peoples need to be heard and meaningfully considered.
    • Oil and gas development is a blessing and a curse, we need to keep the earth clean, and be the voices of the plants, water, air/winds and wildlife.
    • Governments and Indigenous peoples need to learn to work together and understand how we each work. Concrete actions are needed.
    • Economic opportunities and partnerships are expected to be part of CER projects.
    • Extension of an invitation to come visit Ermineskin Cree Nation reserve to discuss projects and how the IAC can become a stronger voice for the future.
  • The government must have courage to find a new way to work together and form new relationships with Indigenous people. This would include considering the whole consultation process, with new definitions and new models, and more Indigenous involvement in government.
  • It was noted that the concerns expressed by Elder Wildcat are consistent with those raised from other Indigenous communities.
  • Benefit of taking a case study approach to review a positive past example of consultation. One suggestion was a 2007-08 wind energy project in British Columbia.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Aim to co-develop engagement processes while incorporating Indigenous worldviews.
  • Strong relationships are a key foundation to consultation. Consider leadership visits to communities as a starting point of these relationships.
  • To proactively share with Indigenous communities about the obligations of the Crown, the entitlements of Indigenous Peoples, the duty of the proponent, CER and government.

Day 2: Joint Board-IAC, Thursday, 15 June 2023

Item 7: Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The IAC Chair opened the meeting and welcomed IAC members back to the meeting. The Board Chair walked through the agenda and plan for the day.

The IAC meeting minutes for March 8-9, 2023, were approved.

Item 8: CER Leadership Update – Updates from the Board Chair and CER CEO

This standing item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3.

The Board Chair highlighted updates that have been made to the IAC Advice Register. She also shared updates from the recent Board quarterly meeting and her recent engagements in Ottawa for awareness. In particular she shared:

  • During her recent trip to Ottawa, she, along with the Board Vice-Chair met with various key contacts, including senior officials at Natural Resources Canada and other departments to discuss the continuity in governance, the CER’s strategic planning process, and the renewal of the IAMCs.
  • During the regular Board meeting, the Board discussed items such as: Energy Futures, cost recovery regulations, export/import regulatory framework, and its Annual Report.
  • She expressed her gratitude and that it was an honour for her to have served as Board Chair and to work together with the IAC.

The Acting CEO provided updates related to CER operational activities as they pertain to the IAC’s work plan priorities, including:

  • CER recruitment and staffing updates.
  • UN Declaration Action Plan Measures.
  • Cultural competency and change management at the CER, including the development of the Diversity and Belonging roadmap, leadership training targeting behaviours and accommodation training, and training the Human Resources team to address systemic barriers to advancing Indigenous recruitment and retention.
  • IAMC renewal
  • The OPR Review and engaging IAMCs in how to improve regulatory oversight.
  • Expansion to the CER Grants and Contribution program.
  • The upcoming release of the CER’s Energy Futures 2023 report.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Consultation and cultural competency should include connecting with cultural history.
  • For the CER to coordinate with other government departments with regards to Grants and Contributions (G&C) where possible given that multiple projects may be occurring at the same time. Doing so would relieve administrative burden for the communities.

The discussion also included:

  • IAC members expressed how they enjoyed meeting with Indigenous staff of the CER last year. There was also discussion on the increased Indigenous capacity within the CER. The A/CEO noted the process used to hire the Professional Leader Reconciliation was an example of how we took a different approach and has helped change subsequent hiring processes. She also thanked the IAC Members who took part in that hiring process and whose advice directly impacted the process.
  • Addressing cumulative effects and how Indigenous peoples can help in this capacity.

Item 9: : IAC Progress and Impact Report

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Cultural Competency and Change Management Work Priority; Work Plan Deliverable #17.

The Acting Chief of Staff provided an overview of the draft IAC annual Progress and Impact Report which incorporates the feedback provided during the March meetings and a meeting with the Vice-Chair. The purpose of the item was to seek co-endorsement of the draft report and seek advice/input on the report prior to publication.

The IAC and Board expressed appreciation for the report and generally endorsed the document with a request to solicit quotes from all IAC members and to revisit the visual portrayal of progress meters.

Item 10: Perspectives of the IAMC Co-Chairs

This item was for discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #8.

The Chair of the Board introduced the Indigenous and Federal Co-Chairs for both the Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMX) and Line 3 Replacement Project (Line 3) IAMCs. The Indigenous Caucus Co-Chairs discussed some key observations challenges and accomplishments with respect to their IAMCs, as detailed below. The Federal Co-Chairs were also present.

Key topics and discussion points raised included:

  • There continues to be concerns around how advice and Indigenous knowledge is treated.
  • IAMCs have been a critical source of support to especially to communities that are under resourced, and generally communities have provided positive feedback.
  • There is a desire for continual improvement of engagement processes and looking at lessons learned from previous projects. Exploring how processes could be more centralized and streamlined and how Indigenous peoples could be more included is of interest.
  • There is also an interest in discussing long term support to the IAMCs during upcoming renewal processes.

Item 11: Implementation of the UN Declaration in the CER Mandate

This item was for information and discussion and advances the UN Declaration Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #9-13.

The CER’s General Counsel provided an overview of work that has taken place since the March meetings, including CER efforts to support the Action Plan being developed by the broader Government of Canada and advancing engagement with experts on the UN Declaration.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The CER must work on its visibility as it is a leader in this area and should be seen as one by other departments. The CER is an example that significant change is possible. There is an opportunity to share this with other regulators and departments.
  • A coordinated external communications/engagement strategy to share the work of the IAC and IAMCs would be helpful to highlight the work. This would include leveraging the existing communications mechanisms the CER has in place with its federal and provincial government colleagues
  • Implementation should take a principle-based approach informed by input and advice of experts in this work.

Item 12: Year Three of Work Plan: 2021–24

This Item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #3.

The Acting Chief of Staff provided opening remarks to the IAC Work Plan 2021–24 item with an intent to seek advice on and confirm the final year of the 2021–24 IAC Work Plan, confirm the themes that are aligned with priorities for each of the remaining meetings during year three, and consider proposed next steps towards the 2024–27 Work Plan.

Discussion included:

  • Importance of continuing to learn about each other and the diversity of Indigenous communities and nations.
  • Suggestion to move some items off the work plan to the staff level now that the organization’s Indigenous capacity has increased.
  • How the IAC defines success and measures the impact of its contributions. Aim to make a lot of impact in specific areas instead of a little bit of impact in many areas.
  • The need to connect with Indigenous communities to remind members of what we are doing and why.

Year three of the Work Plan was endorsed with a request for the secretariat to revisit the approach to reporting back to the Committee on how their advice was actioned.

Item 13: Roundtable

This Item was for discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #5

IAC members went into a roundtable discussion to reflect on the meeting that took place and potential items for consideration moving forward.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The importance for IAC members to feel that they are bringing value. Request the Board provide specific requests for advice and for the organization to further consider how to connect the advice of the IAC to the work of the organization and, ultimately, how change is occurring with CER staff ‘on the ground’ with Indigenous People.
  • The OPR review and pipeline abandonment are topics that could be looked at in more detail.
  • Conducting a formal evaluation process of the IAC in addition to the annual self-assessment process.
  • Board and IAC members thanked the IAMC Indigenous Caucus Co-Chairs for taking part in the meeting.
  • Board and IAC members expressed their appreciation for all the time everyone has spent together. Board noted their desire for more learning opportunities and the IAC for more conversation with Board.

Item 14: Closing Remarks

The IAC Chairperson ended the second and final day of meetings with closing remarks and wished everyone well.

Meeting Summary: March 8–9, 2023

The Canada Energy Regulator (CER) Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) held a meeting virtually on March 8-9, 2023. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Arthur Cunningham from the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III followed by welcoming remarks from the IAC Chairperson.

The IAC Leadership gave an update on communication, engagement, and other activities that occurred since the last meeting. They also provided an overview of themes that emerged during discussions regarding the IAC self-assessments that took place.

The CER Chairperson provided updates from recent discussions of the Board, including Board agenda items, the positive impact of the IAC on the Board and CER, and noted the evolving way that IAC advice is responded to. The CEO offered operational updates related to a variety of topics that align with the IAC’s Work Plan priorities, including ongoing work related to Indigenous Engagement Mechanisms and how IAC advice has been incorporated into the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) review process and Filing Manual update.

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of the proposed approach for the second annual IAC progress and impact report with IAC members advising on its format and content approach. The Committee received an update on the engagement process with experts on the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) that the CER is undertaking. IAC members also received an update on the Department of Justice’s work related to the development of an Action Plan Measures report.

The Executive Vice President, Transparency and Strategic Engagement, with support from the Acting Vice President, Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, provided an update on the CER’s roadmap for Indigenous Peoples’ involvement in oversight. IAC Committee members highlighted the consultation fatigue felt by Indigenous communities and the need to focus on implementation leveraging previous research, as possible. The Acting Vice President, Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, provided an update on the CER’s Indigenous Procurement Strategy that aligns with the modernized federal government Procurement Strategy for Indigenous Business (PSIB). IAC Committee Members noted the important of protecting against Indigenous identity fraud in the procurement process and the role of the CER in influencing industry’s standard on Indigenous procurement.

On the second day, the Committee received a preliminary update from the Executive Vice President, Regulatory, on the CER’s role as Crown Consultation Coordinator, using the NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd. (NGTL) West Path Delivery 2023 Project as a case study. The IAC anticipates further discussion at the next IAC meeting.

The Chief of Staff sought advice on the final third year of the IAC 2021–24 Work Plan and what considerations should be taken into account during the development of the next iteration of the IAC Work Plan. IAC members then engaged in a roundtable discussion and reflected on the meeting that took place and potential items for consideration moving forward.

The meeting concluded with closing remarks from the IAC Chairperson who wished everyone well.

Meeting Minutes March 8-9, 2023

Day 1: IAC, Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order.

The meeting opened with a prayer from Elder Arthur Cunningham from the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III, who was introduced by staff from the Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation team. The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting and thanking Elder Arthur Cunningham for starting off the meeting in a good way.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of the meeting agenda and it was accepted via consensus.

She also welcomed the Professional Leader, Reconciliation, and noted the addition of her attendance and support at future IAC meetings.

The IAC meeting minutes for November 30-December 1, 2022, were approved, acknowledging the change to reflect joint IAC-Board meetings with signing by both the IAC and Board Chairs.

Item 3: IAC Leadership Update

This standing item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4.

The IAC Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson summarized the communication, engagement and other activities undertaken by IAC leadership since the last IAC meeting. Discussions pertaining to leadership meetings and CER activities were shared throughout the meeting. There was a brief discussion of planned engagement with National Indigenous Organizations (NIOs) and upcoming agenda items.

A debrief of themes that emerged during the IAC self-assessment discussions was also provided. Themes included, but are not limited to:

  • Improving the ability to create succinct and tangible impact by the IAC;
  • Creating space for IAC Member-led agenda creation;
  • The importance of succession planning; and
  • Considering the inclusion of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women as a topic of examination by the IAC.
  • IAC members also discussed options for improving the IAC self-assessment process in particular noting interest in a more structured framework to support comparative analysis over time.

Item 4: CER Leadership Update – Updates from the Board of Board Chair and CER CEO

This standing item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3.

The Board Chairperson provided a land acknowledgement from where she was situated on the traditional and unceded ancestral lands of the Lkwungen People, in particular, the Esquimalt and Songhees First Nations on south Vancouver Island.

The Board Chairperson highlighted updates that have been made to the IAC Advice Register including that it now reflects how the CER is responding to the blended advice that is provided at joint Board-IAC meetings. She also shared updates from the recent Board quarterly meeting for awareness:

  • She noted that there was a great deal of discussion around the impact of the IAC, and the importance of the ongoing relationship that the IAC has with the Board and organization overall at the meeting.
  • There was also discussion on the introduction of staggered terms for IAC Committee Members, pending discussions with individuals.
  • She signaled that IAC advice will be sought as the Board launches its work towards the CER Strategic Plan for 2024–27.

An update was also provided on planned engagements in Ottawa with NIOs and government departments to discuss both the work of the IAC. Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committee (IAMC) renewal also remains top of mind, particularly following meetings between the Board Chairperson and Chairpersons of the IAMCs for both the Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMX) and Line 3 Replacement Project (Line 3).

The CEO provided updates related to CER operational activities as they pertain to the IAC’s work plan priorities, including:

  • Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) continues to work on and engage with Indigenous partners on the Indigenous Ministerial Arrangements Regulations;
  • The CER signed two Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with the Saskatchewan First Nations Natural Resource Centre of Excellence and Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board respectively;
  • IAMC renewal discussions continue, regional leadership meetings have taken place to foster discussion around the Nova Gas Transmission Ltd. (NGTL) Indigenous Oversight Forum mechanism; and IAC advice has been incorporated into the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) review process and Filing Manual Update; and
  • An update on various staffing changes within the organization related to supporting the work of the IAC was also provided.

Item 5: IAC Progress and Impact Report

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority; Work Plan Deliverable #3.

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of the proposed approach for the second iteration of the IAC’s annual progress and impact report. The purpose of the item was to seek advice and input from the Committee on the format and themes of the report.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • The report should directly reflect the IAC work plan priorities.
  • The use of a story telling format will best resonate with Indigenous communities. Use examples of progress and impact that would be meaningful to communities.
  • The use of visuals is critical in particular around the communication of the report. Direct quotes or video clips from IAC Members could also be considered.
  • Creating hyperlinks, or access, to the information referred to in the report will instil more trust and confidence in the work being done by the IAC.
  • Work with Indigenous staff at the CER to support an authentic voice being heard in the report.

Staff confirmed the next steps for the report would be to: integrate the advice of the IAC, further discuss with the Professional Leader Reconciliation, and to bring a draft report to the IAC in June for their endorsement.

Item 6: Implementing the UN Declaration within the CER’s Mandate

This item was for information and discussion and advances the UN Declaration Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverables #9-13.

The CER’s General Counsel provided an overview of work that has taken place since the September meetings, including potential CER support of specific proposed Action Plan Measures under the work being led by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) Act, and work underway at the CER to implement the UN Declaration, such as engaging with experts identified by the IAC. He also highlighted the importance of the relationship between the IAC and the CER in moving work on the UN Declaration forward.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Appreciation for the CER working with experts in the implementation of the UN Declaration. IAC members are supportive of this additional expertise for the CER in this area, and as a learning opportunity for the IAC and CER.
  • In discussions related to DOJ’s UN Declaration Action Plan, the importance of including provinces and territories was highlighted.
  • The role of the CER as it relates to projects and other departments such as the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada (IAAC), with an emphasis on the CER’s role as Crown Consultation Coordinator.
  • Creating a new foundation to work towards collaborative consent and building a collaborative model for engagement. The importance of the CER building trust with Indigenous communities.

The IAC will receive an update on the work progress at the next quarterly meeting though staff noted that given the limited time between meetings the progress may not be substantial.

Item 7: Enhancing the Involvement of Indigenous Peoples in Regulatory Oversight

This item was for information and discussion and advances the Indigenous Peoples’ Involvement in Regulatory Oversight Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #18.

The Executive Vice President, Transparency and Strategic Engagement, with support from the Acting Vice President, Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, provided an update on the CER’s roadmap for Indigenous Peoples’ involvement in oversight. The purpose of the item was to provide the Committee with an update on work underway, including renewing and deepening relationships with the IAMCs, engagement with Indigenous Nations and communities impacted by projects, and research on best practices in other jurisdictions.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The approaches to how research on collaborative mechanisms would take place via internal and external review. Recognition of engagement fatigue on the part of Indigenous communities. Focus on implementation using existing research, as possible.
  • Understanding what oversight is and what it means to different Indigenous communities.
  • Utilizing different mechanisms, including examining Canadian Standards Association (CSA) standards, for regulatory oversight and expectation setting for project proponents and their approach to impacted Indigenous communities. CER staff acknowledge the importance of CSA standards but notes the lack of direct CER control over these.

Staff will continue with work as planned in the roadmap and continue to seek dialogue with the IAC when further guidance is required.

Item 8: Indigenous Procurement Strategy

This item was for information and discussion and advances the Cultural Competency and Change Management Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #15

The Acting Vice President, Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, provided an update on the strategy that aligned with the modernized federal government Procurement Strategy for Indigenous Business (PSIB). The purpose of the item was to seek confirmation from the Committee that the CER’s Indigenous Procurement Strategy (IPS) reflects the spirit and intent of advice previously provided by the IAC to the organization.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The types of services and goods that the CER generally procures.
  • Understanding what supports are in place for Indigenous communities and businesses to navigate the federal government’s procurement process.
  • The potential role of the CER in setting a standard of Indigenous procurement for industry and possible mechanisms to do so.
  • Consideration around how the CER could move beyond the minimal federal standard of procurement.
  • The importance of protecting against Indigenous identity fraud in the procurement process.

Staff noted their appreciation for the conversation and will consider the comments as the implementation of the IPS continues.

Day 2: IAC, Thursday, March 9, 2023

Item 9: Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Chairperson opened the meeting and welcomed IAC members back to the meeting. He also walked through the agenda and plan for the day.

Item 10: Crown Consultation/West Path Update

This Item was for information and discussion and advances the Crown Consultation and Accommodation Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #21.

The Executive Vice President, Regulatory, supported by the Director, Crown Consultation, provided an overview of the CER’s recent, ongoing, and future Crown Consultation activities and initiatives. The purpose of the item was to provide a preliminary update and seek advice on the CER’s role as Crown Consultation Coordinator, using the NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd. (NGTL) West Path Delivery 2023 Project as a case study.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Understanding the full scope of funding provided to Indigenous communities throughout the consultation process and how the amount was determined. Further, how feedback is being sought from Indigenous communities on the adequacy and experience in accessing the provided funds.
  • Tangible changes that were made to the project that can be directly tied to what was heard throughout the consultation process (e.g., Indigenous monitoring of cumulative effects, and economic benefits sharing).
  • The importance of maintaining continued relationships with Indigenous communities beyond the consultation period for projects.
  • The importance of having consultation protocols with Indigenous communities that reduce dependency on single relationships. The protocol would remain while individuals may move on to different roles, for example.

Staff are concluding the review and learn session with Indigenous participants in the NGTL West Path hearing process. A more detailed Crown Consultation and Accommodation update, inclusive of further details on funding opportunities, will be provided at the next quarterly IAC meeting.

Item 11: IAC Work Plan

This Item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #3.

The Chief of Staff provided opening remarks to the IAC Work Plan 2021–24 item with an intent to seek advice on and confirm the final year of the 2021–24 IAC Work Plan, determine priorities within the Work Plan to focus on for year three, and consider proposed next steps for the 2024–27 Work Plan.

An expert on the implementation of the UN Declaration, Roshan Danesh, joined for this item and was introduced to the Committee.

Discussion included:

  • Recognition that the work plan is ambitious. This should be considered as work begins towards a new IAC work plan. The IAC and CER work to-date has offered extensive learning for the organization and the IAC.
  • As the CER’s internal Indigenous capacity is increasing so there is opportunity to reassess which work is taken on by the IAC and CER staff. At the same time, staff noted that internal capacity has room to grow and the continued importance of the IAC’s guidance.
  • The Board will be developing the CER Strategic Plan 2024–27 beginning in June 2023. As part of this the Board will be seeking advice from the IAC. The IAC, in turn, can leverage the new Strategic Plan to focus on the next IAC Work Plan 2024–27.
  • Interest in further clarification around the relation between the IAC and IAMCs as well as communication with NIOs.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Request for the third year of the work plan to be focused on remaining priority areas of work with dates noted for planned completion.
  • In refreshing and building the next iteration of the work plan, consider how First Nations, Inuit, and Métis perspectives will be integrated. Additionally, to hold space for collaborative development of the work plan.
  • The current work plan is focused on the CER’s priorities; future work plans should better reflect priorities of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Peoples
  • The relationship with provinces and territories should be an area of priority.
  • Shift IAC agenda development process to provide all IAC members the opportunity to provide input into draft agendas.

Item 12: Roundtable

This Item was for discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #5

IAC members went into a roundtable discussion to reflect on the meeting that took place and potential items for consideration moving forward.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Potential ways to enhance the relationship between Committee members and the Board. Further, to continue to work towards dialogue between the IAC, Board and CER.
  • The importance of allowing time on the agenda to dig into substantive items and provide space for participation by all Committee Members.

Item 13: Closing Remarks

The IAC Chairperson ended the second and final day of meetings with closing remarks and wished everyone well.

Meeting Summary: November 30 and December 1, 2022

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) and the Board of Directors had a joint meeting in-person on November 30 and December 1, 2022. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Irene Morin from Enoch Cree Nation followed by welcoming remarks from the IAC Chairperson and the CER Board Chairperson

The IAC Chairperson and Chief of Staff opened the meeting by reviewing adjustments to the agenda. The IAC Leadership gave an update on communication, engagement, and other activities that occurred since the last meeting. They also provided an overview of the Line Wide Gatherings that took place at the end of November with the Trans Mountain Expansion and Line 3 Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs).

The CER Chairperson provided updates about recent discussions of the Board, including Board recruitment efforts to increase Indigenous leadership and representation, renewal of the IAC, and explained how IAC advice has been incorporated by the organization. The CEO offered operational updates related to a variety of topics including ongoing work related to Indigenous Engagement Mechanisms and a first-of-its-kind agreement with an Indigenous organization on a data energy sharing project as part of the CER’s commitment to advancing Reconciliation.

The Director, Indigenous Cultural Competency provided the Committee with an update on work planned regarding the CER’s proposed National Indigenous Engagement Plan. IAC members and Directors provided advice on additional considerations to take into account as the plan is finalized.

The Acting Vice President, Regulatory Strategy and Coordination provided an overview of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) Review, including a status update, the results of Phase 1 engagement, highlights from the OPR What We Heard Report and next steps. Committee members provided advice on the planned Phase 2 engagement process. The Professional Leader, Environment provided an overview of the updates to the filing manual. IAC members and Directors provided advice on additional considerations to take into account including adjusting timelines to account for capacity restrictions and ensure alignment with similar initiatives. Proposed changes to language utilized at the CER was also discussed and accepted for incorporation.

On the second day, the Board and Committee received an update on the planned engagement process with Indigenous experts that the CER intends to undertake to continue to advance the implementation of the UN Declaration within the CER’s mandate. IAC members and Directors provided feedback on identifying Indigenous experts to be engaged and other matters. A former industry executive was invited to share their experiences working with Indigenous partners on various projects and discussed the importance of building trust and relationships, and how an individual can make an impactful difference.

For the IAC-only meeting in the afternoon, the Commission joined the group for a presentation from the Department of Justice (DOJ). DOJ provided an overview of the work underway regarding the implementation of the UN Declaration across the Government of Canada, including the development of a proposed action plan. IAC members emphasized the need for national oversight of all initiatives related to the UN Declaration to maximize efficiency and efficacy. IAC members then met as a group to discuss the results of the IAC assessment and engage in a roundtable discussion.

The meeting concluded with closing remarks from Elder Irene Morin from Enoch Cree Nation who wished everyone well.

Meeting Minutes November 30 and December 1, 2022

Day 1: Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the joint meeting to order.

The meeting opened with a prayer from Elder Irene Morin from Enoch Cree Nation, who was introduced by the Chair of the Governance Committee of the Board of Directors. The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting and thanking Elder Irene Morin for starting off the meeting in a good way.

The new Métis National Council IAC member nominee was welcomed to the Committee. IAC Members, the Board of Directors, and CER staff introduced themselves and their respective roles pertaining to the CER.

The Chairperson of the Board provided a land acknowledgement from where the meeting took place, on the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of the meeting agenda and it was accepted via consensus.

The IAC meeting minutes for September 26-27, 2022 were held for approval until the following day due to technical difficulties in accessing them and were subsequently approved.

Item 3: IAC Leadership Update

This Item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4.

The IAC Chairperson summarized the communication, engagement and other activities undertaken by IAC leadership since the last IAC meeting. Discussions pertaining to leadership meetings and CER activities were shared throughout the meeting, including various presentations and meetings that IAC leadership attended to build external relations for the Committee as whole. A debrief of the Line Wide Gatherings that took place for both the Trans Mountain Expansion and Line 3 Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs) was also provided.

IAC members and Directors discussed options for engaging with the IAMCs, including:

  • The frequency of engagements to ensure a meaningful and constructive relationship is built and sustained over time.
  • Utilizing formal versus informal methods of engagement with the IAMCs and determining next steps for engagement.

Item 4: CER Leadership Update – Updates from the Board of Board Chair and CER CEO

This Item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3.

The Board Chairperson highlighted updates that have been made to the IAC Advice Register and shared the outcome of recent discussions of the Board for awareness:

  • The Board Chairperson noted the hybrid approach to meetings that the Board of Directors would be adopting moving forward, including alternating between virtual and in-person meetings.
  • The Board of Directors carried out an evaluation and self-assessment process, similar to what the IAC underwent, which will assist with the Board’s work planning process.
  • The Board is currently undertaking recruitment for two new Directors, noting the keen interest to increase Indigenous leadership and representation on the Board.
  • An update on the status of IAC renewal was provided. Committee members shared feedback on their interest in renewing and preferred term lengths. The CER continues to work with the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami regarding their IAC nominee and will also be reaching out to the Assembly of First Nations to confirm their nominee in the new year.
  • On the Advice Register, the Chairperson noted that the Board accepted advice received from the September IAC Meeting on Cultural Competency and Change Management. In addition, CER staff continue to consider ways to improve the readability of the Advice Register.

The CEO provided updates related to CER operational activities, including:

  • Highlights from ongoing work with the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMC) and recent Line Wide Gatherings;
  • CER activities related to Indigenous involvement and issues management, including work underway related to a new Indigenous Collaborative Mechanism;
  • Ongoing work enabling Indigenous Monitors and Inspection Officers to work together;
  • Activities to date and planned related to the Onshore Pipeline Regulations Review and filing manual review;
  • The formation of the new Diversity and Belonging team working to implement the Roadmap for change at the CER;
  • The signing of a memorandum of understanding with the Saskatchewan First Nations Natural Resource Centre of Excellence (SFNNRCOE);
  • The issuance of a letter to industry for best practices related to providing notification to Indigenous Communities; and
  • Highlights from adjudicative decisions expected before the end of the calendar year.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Understanding the CER’s role related to Crown Consultation and potential ways that the IAC can support these processes to ease the capacity burdens on Indigenous communities.
  • The work underway amongst the broader federal service to address the lack of protections in place regarding self-identification, particularly for Indigenous Peoples. Suggestions were provided by IAC members and Directors for how the CER could strengthen the documentation process.

Item 5: National Indigenous Engagement Plan

This item was for strategic advice and discussion and advances Cultural Competency and Change Management Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #17.

The Director, Indigenous Cultural Competency provided an overview of updates and work planned regarding the CER’s proposed National Indigenous Engagement Plan. The purpose of the item was to seek advice and input from the Committee and Board on whether the correct components had been identified for the plan and what other considerations should be taken into account in the development and implementation of the plan.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • As an addition to the plan, consider including mechanisms to explore opportunities for the formation of IAMCs or similar structures in Eastern Canada to support development in these regions.
  • Reference the UN Declaration in the plan
  • Focus on building relationships with Indigenous partners in a distinctions-based manner rather than on the government terms of consultation and engagement.
  • Include the IAC in a formal manner within the plan.
  • Consider how to engage the National Indigenous Organizations (NIOs) to set the table for how to have better conversations with rights holders.
  • Determine a method for organizing and sharing information concerning broad themes heard from Indigenous partners though engagement.
  • Clarify what the goal of the Indigenous Engagement Strategy is and how this will support initiatives at the CER and possibly across the federal service.
  • Consider how capacity constraints on the side of Indigenous partners can be taken into account and outline how the CER fits within broader Government of Canada initiatives.

Item 6: Regulatory Framework Improvements: OPR Review – What We Heard Report; Filing Manual Update

This item was for strategic advice and direction and advances the Indigenous peoples’ involvement in regulatory oversight Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #18.

The Executive Vice President, Regulatory introduced both items up for discussion related to regulatory framework improvements.

OPR Review: What We Heard Report

The Acting Vice President, Regulatory Strategy and Coordination provided an overview of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations Review, including a status update, the results of Phase 1 engagement, highlights from the OPR What We Heard Report and next steps. The purpose of the item was to seek advice and input from the Committee and Board on Phase 2 of the planned engagement process.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • The key themes identified should be more specific than Reconciliation and Indigenous Peoples; consider factoring in the alignment of laws and respecting the rights of rights holders.
  • Thought should be given to how the work underway interacts with broader federal government initiatives to ensure there is harmonization of compliance expectations and that the highest compliance standards are implemented.
  • Clarify what is meant by monitoring of a project over its lifecycle and consider the role of IAMCs in this space.
  • For the next stage of the review process, the team should be clear about what changes are proposed for the OPRs and how these changes reflect the interests of Indigenous rights holders. Advice to consider adjusting the What We Heard Report to be more detailed and responsive to input received was also given.
  • Given the similarities between the OPR review process and the Filing Manual update, care should be given to reduce duplication between both initiatives with an eye to reducing consultation fatigue through the clarification of what changes the CER intends to make for each activity.

Filing Manual Update

The Professional Leader, Environment provided an overview of the updates to the filing manual from the traditional, unceded territory of the Anishinaabe Algonquin Nation. The purpose of the item was to seek advice and input from the Committee and Board on the proposed approach.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Given the ongoing work with the OPR review process that occurs congruently with the Filing Manual update, the team should consider the proposed timelines to account for consultation fatigue on the part of Indigenous partners.
  • Consider how and where within the filing manual topics related to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) and Indigenous Knowledge should be incorporated within the filing manual.
  • Shape the Filing Manual so that Indigenous rights and values are reflected, not just Western values.
  • Other potential avenues for engagement, including the IAMCs, should be considered in addition to Indigenous communities.
  • Clarify / note what the significance determination is.

Item 7: Language Evolution

This item was for strategic advice and direction and advances the Cultural Competency and Change Management Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #17.

The Professional Leader, Environment, with support from the Professional Leader, Reconciliation, provided an overview of the proposed changes to language utilized at the CER regarding how Indigenous Peoples are referred to in working and official documents. The purpose of the item was to seek advice and input from the Committee and Board on the proposed language changes.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Suggested changes were accepted, and definitions should be provided at the beginning of documents to clarify what terms refer to.
  • Further considerations include how a distinctions-based approach may be incorporated into further language changes.

Day 2: Joint Board-IAC, Morning, Thursday, December 1, 2022

Item 8: Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Board Chairperson opened the meeting and welcomed IAC and Board members back to the meeting. She also walked through the agenda and plan for the day.

The Board Chairperson provided a land acknowledgement from the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.

Item 9: Implementing the UN Declaration within the CER’s Mandate

This Item was for information and discussion and advances the UN Declaration Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #9-13.

The CER’s General Counsel provided an overview of work that has taken place since the September meetings, including plans underway to engage Indigenous experts on advancing initiatives related to the UN Declaration at the CER.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Incorporating timelines related to the sequencing of activities and highlighting objectives/milestones and deliverables for initiatives.
  • Adding a section that references economics and trade.
  • Methods and considerations (e.g., distinctions-based, regionality, expertise, etc.) to take into account to further reduce the list of experts to be engaged, in order to support meaningful discussions.
  • How the work of the CER fits within the broader body of initiatives in the Government of Canada
  • Methods for incorporating the IAMCs into the process of implementing the UN Declaration at the CER.
  • Developing a new regulatory instrument that could be applied across all sectors of the CER.

Item 10: Industry Best Practices for Indigenous Partnership

This Item was for information and discussion and advances the UN Declaration Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #9.

A former industry executive shared their experiences working with Indigenous partners on various projects, the importance of building trust and relationships, and the difference that an individual can make.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Opportunities for engaging with Indigenous partners (e.g., filing manual, energy transition, IAMCs, etc.).
  • The process of relationship building, including resource and time investments needed to propel conversations forward.
  • Methods for building digital capacity amongst Indigenous partners.
  • Increasing Indigenous leadership within industry.
  • Methods for engaging with proponents and bringing them to the table.

Item 11: Connection Time/Director Photos

Time was provided to allow participants to connect informally, and for a Director to have their photo taken for the CER external postings.

Day 2: IAC Only, Afternoon, Thursday, December 1, 2022

Item 12: Welcome to IAC Meeting

The IAC Chairperson opened the IAC-only portion of the meeting and welcomed IAC members back to the meeting. He also walked through the agenda and plan for the afternoon. to IAC Meeting

Item 13: Implementing the UN Declaration within the CER’s Mandate – Department of Justice Presentation

This Item was for information and discussion and advances the UN Declaration Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #9-13.

The Assistant Deputy Minister, Indigenous Rights and Relations Portfolio from the Department of Justice, provided an overview of the work underway regarding the implementation of the UN Declaration across the Government of Canada, including the development of a proposed action plan. CER Commissioners also joined IAC members to hear the presentation from the Department of Justice.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The need for a group or entity at the national level to oversee all work underway related to the UN Declaration and ensure coordination/alignment between the various initiatives.
  • How constitutional reforms could be considered.
  • Work underway at the CER, including the IAC’s work plan and how it may be reflected in the proposed action plan being developed by the Department of Justice.
  • Proposed action plan initiatives and what is being heard from Indigenous partners.

Item 14: Roundtable

This Item was for Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #5

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of the IAC Assessment results.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The incorporation of a year-over-year tracker for the IAC assessment results to assist IAC members while providing their feedback.
  • Considerations for the development of the IAC Work Plan, particularly regarding the timelines associated with deliverables.

IAC members went into a roundtable discussion to reflect on the meeting that took place and potential items for consideration moving forward.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Communication items related to the IAC, including how the IAC has been engaged on topics, such as the OPR Review and filing manual update.
  • Methods for engaging with the Department of Justice on their proposed action plan to ensure CER activities are reflected, and how the CER should continue moving forward on UN Declaration initiatives.
  • Suggestions for how the IAC could be engaged between quarterly meetings to ensure all Committee members are apprised of developments and feel involved.
  • Need for IAC members to plan to attend the full scheduled meetings and for travel arrangements to take this into account when meeting in-person

Item 15: Closing Remarks

Elder Irene Morin from Enoch Cree Nation ended the second and final day of meetings with closing remarks and wished everyone well.

Meeting Summary: September 26–27, 2022

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) met virtually on September 26-27, 2022. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Genevieve Solway from the Treaty 7 Siksika Nation.

The IAC Chairperson and Director, Executive Office opened the conversation by reviewing adjustments to the agenda given changes in schedules. The IAC Leadership provided an update on their communication, engagement, and other activities since the last meeting. An overview of the planned self-assessment process of Committee members was also provided.

The IAC received updates from the CER Chairperson highlighting recent discussions of the Board, including renewal of the IAC, and explaining how IAC advice has been incorporated Tthe CEO offered operational updates related to a variety of topics including ongoing work related to the renewal of the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMC) and activities related to Indigenous involvement and issues management.

The Director, Executive Office provided the Advisory with an update on changes made and planned for the IAC Advice Register to account for input received by both the IAC and the Board of Directors. IAC members discussed options for conveying the tangible impacts of advice provided by the IAC to the CER.

The IAC received a presentation from Natural Resources Canada on the planned Indigenous Ministerial Arrangements Regulations engagement process. IAC members emphasized the need to take a multi-faceted approach to consultation that is forward looking and also incorporates lessons learnt from past approaches while taking into account the potential consultation fatigue experienced by Indigenous partners. The Committee noted that pursuing meaningful relationships will support the collaborative decision-making process.

On the second day, the Committee received an update on the planned engagement process with Indigenous experts that the CER intends to undertake to continue to advance the implementation of the UN Declaration within the CER’s mandate. IAC members provided feedback on identifying Indigenous experts to be engaged. The CEO also provided an update on the CER’s strategic plan and noted the importance of building meaningful relationships with Indigenous peoples outside of the adjudicative process.

IAC members provided strategic advice on the CER’s Indigenous Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement Strategy. Advice highlighted the challenges of protecting the identities of individuals that identify as Indigenous and developing strategies to prevent perception of preferential treatment of Indigenous employees. Committee members recommended the incorporation of a communication element into the strategy and highlighted the importance of mentorship pertaining to career advancement.

The new Professional Leader, Reconciliation and new Lead Commissioner were both introduced to the IAC.

The meeting concluded with closing remarks from a Committee member and the Executive Vice President, Transparency and Strategic Engagement wished everyone well.

Meeting Minutes September 26–27, 2022

Day 1: Monday, September 26, 2022

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order.

The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Genevieve Solway from Treaty 7 Siksika Nation, who was introduced by the CER’s Administrative Assistant, Policy and Coordination.

The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting and thanking Elder Genevieve Solway for starting off the meeting in a good way.

The Chairperson of the Board provided a land acknowledgement from the traditional and unceded ancestral lands of the Lkwungen People, in particular, the Esquimalt and Songhees First Nations on south Vancouver Island and wished to pay them her respect, while also honouring the traditional territories of all participants.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) offered a land acknowledgement from where she is located – the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

With a few slight adjustments, the meeting agenda was accepted.

IAC Members approved the minutes for the IAC June 15-17, 2022 meeting.

The Director, Executive Office provided an overview of completed and outstanding action items and reviewed changes to the agenda, including how items will be shifted around to accommodate schedules.

Item 3: Leadership Update

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4

The IAC Chairperson summarized the communication, engagement and other activities undertaken by IAC leadership since the last IAC meeting. Discussions pertaining to leadership meetings and CER activities were shared throughout the meeting, including an overview of the process that the IAC would be undertaking following the September 2022 IAC meetings to assess the functioning of the committee as well as a self-assessment.

IAC members discussed options for continual engagement with the entire Committee in the period between official meetings, including:

  • Utilizing technology to provide regular updates on the status of discussions and any issues under consideration.
  • Exploring opportunities for learning and professional development of the Committee to enrich discussions at meetings.

Item 4: CER Progress Update – Updates from the Board of Directors and CER CEO; IAC Advice Register

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3

The Board Chairperson highlighted updates that have been made to the IAC Advice Register and shared the outcome of recent discussions of the Board for awareness:

  • The Board Chairperson expressed appreciation for the opportunity to have met in-person back in June 2022.
  • The Deputy Minister of Naturel Resources Canada attended the recent September 2022 Board of Directors meetings to discuss government priorities regarding reconciliation and its implementation. The CER’s new Professional Leader, Reconciliation was also introduced to the Board of Directors, noting the importance of this staffing action in moving the organization forward in terms of Indigenous cultural competency.
  • The Board will also be developing a new strategic plan next year for the organization and seeking IAC advice and input in shaping the plan. Work and progress underway for modeling net-zero greenhouse gas emissions will also be shared with the Committee for awareness when ready.
  • An update on IAC membership renewal was provided, noting that the self-assessment process will aid in determining the path forward for the broader renewal of the Committee. Staff noted that a new appointee from the Métis National Council was received, and staff are awaiting a nominee from Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami remains ongoing.
  • On the Advice Register, the Chairperson noted that the Board accepted advice received from the June IAC Meeting on Cultural Competency and Change Management. In addition, CER staff are considering ways to improve the readability of the Advice Register.

The CEO noted that a new written format for providing operational updates was used for this meeting. Updates included ongoing work with the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMC); CER activities related to Indigenous involvement and issues management; new methods for Indigenous Monitors and Inspection Officers to work together; the Onshore Pipeline Regulations Review; and the CEO and IAC Chairperson’s keynote address at the International Pipeline Conference to share the Indigenous engagement and reconciliation work underway at the CER.

  • Considering opportunities to formalize the relationship between the IAC and IAMCs.
  • For the written update, a suggestion to also include information on areas of concern that the Board of Directors and CER are keeping on their radar for a wholistic view work underway at the organization.

Item 5: Communicating IAC Impact and Progress / Advice Register

This item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #6

The Director, Executive Office highlighted updates that have been made to the IAC Advice Register and what adjustments are planned. First, advice has been separated out into two documents: advice already implemented, and advice requiring ongoing work. Second, to improve communication of advice, the secretariat proposed methods for conveying the tangible impacts of advice received from the Advisory.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Exploring options for simplifying the update process for the IAC Advice Register.
  • Developing a summary document of current updates to the IAC Advice Register for improved communication of advice, while maintaining the detailed advice for other uses.

Item 6: Presentation on Indigenous Ministerial Arrangements Regulations engagement process

This item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #6

The Senior Director of Pipelines, Gas, and LNG from Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) provided a land acknowledgement from the traditional unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabeg People. From the presentation, he provided an overview of the department’s work to date and upcoming plans regarding the Indigenous Ministerial Arrangements Regulations engagement process.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Understanding the difference and potential interaction between NRCan’s Indigenous Ministerial Arrangements Regulations and the CER’s Onshore Pipeline Regulations as it relates to various legislation (e.g., the CER Act, the Impact Assessment Act, etc.).
  • Using a multi-faceted approach to consultation, taking into account potential consultation fatigue on the part of Indigenous partners, that is both forward looking and reflective of the past as well.
  • A request that engagement with the IAC be added as part of NRCan’s planned engagement and consultation process.
  • The importance of pursuing meaningful relationships to support collaborative decision making.
  • Understanding how the world view of Indigenous peoples is incorporated into the culture of NRCan.

Elder Genevieve Solway ended the first day of meetings with closing remarks and wished everyone well.

Day 2: Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Item 7: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Director, Executive Office opened the meeting and welcomed IAC members back to the meeting. She also walked through the agenda and plan for the day.

The CER’s General Counsel provided a land acknowledgement from the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.

Item 8: Implementing the UN Declaration within the CER’s Mandate

This Item was for information and advances the UN Declaration Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #10-13.

The CER’s General Counsel provided an overview of plans to engage Indigenous experts on advancing work regarding the UN Declaration at the CER.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Clarifying how the list of Indigenous experts identified for outreach was determined and noting that additional follow-up with Committee members would be needed before the list could be finalized.
  • Understanding how departments across the federal government are moving forward with implementing the tenets of the UN Declaration, while accounting for guidance provided by the Department of Justice.

Item 9: CER Strategic Plan

This Item was for information and discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #7.

The CEO provided an overview of the strategic priorities within the CER’s Strategic Plan and highlights of work underway.

Topics of discussion included:

  • A need for the CER to be more strategic in building relationships with Indigenous partners outside of the adjudicative process.
  • An interest in understanding the position and opinion of the Board of Directors regarding implementation of the UN Declaration within the CER’s mandate per the IAC’s work plan priority.

Item 10: Indigenous Recruitment, Retention and Advancement Strategy

This Item was for Discussion and advances the Cultural Competency and Change Management Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #15

The Executive Vice President of Transparency and Strategic Engagement provided an overview of the strategy presented and noted that improving cultural competency at the CER involves a two-fold plan. First, ensuring that all staff regardless of background have a strong foundation and understanding of reconciliation. Second, that Indigenous staff feel safe and a sense of belonging within the organization to improve retention and advancement, in addition to recruitment. The purpose of the item was to seek advice and input from the Committee on whether the strategy had been characterized and framed appropriately.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Consider approaches to validating the Indigenous descent of individuals who identify as Indigenous. This is intended to deter the formation of a toxic work environment for Indigenous employees when others incorrectly claim to be of Indigenous descent.
  • Continue to develop the strategy without the use of targets of Indigenous employees to prevent perceptions of preferential treatment and encourage continual growth.
  • Incorporate a communication element into the strategy.
  • Consider mentorship for Indigenous employees and other tools such as a roadmap that outlines possible career paths at the CER, including potential multi-disciplinary development opportunities within the organization and across the federal service.

Item 11: Introduction of New Leadership at the CER

This item was to introduce Committee members to the new Professional Leader, Reconciliation, and Lead Commissioner.

The new Professional Leader, Reconciliation was introduced to the Committee and shared her initial impressions of working within the CER compared to previous external experiences. The new Lead Commissioner was also introduced to Committee members and shared a few observations.

Item 12: Roundtable

This Item was for Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #5

A roundtable discussion was deferred to a separate meeting to take place prior to the next IAC meeting.

Item 13: Closing Remarks

A member of the Committee provided closing remarks and the Executive Vice President, Transparency and Strategic Engagement wished everyone well in lieu of the Elder being unable to join due to technical difficulties.

I, the undersigned, hereby certify these to be the minutes of the Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee and Board-IAC meetings held 26-27 September 2022.

________________________________________
Chairperson of the IAC

Signed on November 30, 2022

________________________________________
Chief of Staff and Corporate Secretary

Signed on November 30, 2022

Meeting Summary: June 15–17, 2022

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee met in Calgary, Alberta on June 15-17, 2022. The Board of Directors participated in the meeting on June 15 (afternoon) and June 16. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Donald Rowan from the Tsuut’ina Nation.

The IAC Chairperson and Chief of Staff opened a roundtable discussion for IAC members on the progress of the committee, priorities, and next steps. IAC Members discussed various topics, including the need to strengthen the working relationship between the IAC and Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs). IAC Members also had an introductory meeting with employees from the CER’s Indigenous Employee Circle (IEC) to build relationships and share information.

IAC Members and Directors, employees from the IEC, the CER Lead Commissioner, Deputy Lead Commissioner, as well as several executives and staff participated in the opening of an Elders Room at the CER’s Centre-10 office.

The IAC and Board also received updates from the CER Chairperson highlighting recent discussions of the Board and explaining how IAC advice has been incorporated, and from the CEO related to a variety of operational topics including an update on the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) Review, and progress on implementing the CER’s Reconciliation strategic priority.

On the second day, the IAC and Board provided strategic advice on the CER’s draft Indigenous Cultural Competency (ICC) Framework. Advice highlighted the challenges of a single framework that covers First Nations, Métis, and Inuit perspectives as well as all communities. Further, discussion highlighted that cultural competency expectations should vary across positions, with increased expectations for senior leaders. The IAC and Board also co-endorsed, by consensus, a CER Statement on Reconciliation.

The Secretary of the Commission provided an overview of the Commission for IAC Members. Members raised questions around cultural competency, procedural fairness, and Indigenous knowledge.

The meeting concluded with the IAC approving, by consensus, a visual identity logo for the IAC.

Elder Jeanette Starlight from Tsuut’ina Nation ended the meeting with a prayer and wished everyone well.

Meeting Minutes June 15–17, 2022

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order.

The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Donald Rowan from the Tsuut’ina Nation, who was introduced by the CER’s Technical Specialist, Indigenous Engagement.

The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting and thanking Elder Donald Rowan for starting off the meeting in a good way. The IAC Chairperson offered an acknowledgement of the traditional territories of the area, accompanied by an invitation to learn more deeply about the Indigenous peoples in the local areas where people reside.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The meeting agenda was accepted, as presented.

IAC Members approved the minutes for the IAC March 2–4, 2022 meeting.

Item 3: Roundtable Discussion

This Item was for Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #5

The purpose of this item was for IAC members to discuss progress of the committee, priorities, and next steps. The IAC Chairperson and Chief of Staff introduced this discussion and welcomed feedback from IAC members.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Considering IAC working groups and other ways to advance the Work Plan in an effective way. In addition, a request to consider the working relationship between the IAC and Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs).
  • A request to provide IAC Members with information about IAC renewal.
  • Members remain interested in involving Indigenous experts in CER and IAC work.
  • A suggestion to consider relationship building between the IAC and regulated industry.
  • A request to consider how lessons learned on policies and procedures are being incorporated into CER work, including the work of the Commission.

Item 4: Meeting the Indigenous Employee Circle

This Item was for Information and advances the Cultural Competency and Change Management Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #16

IAC Members had an introductory meeting with employees from the Indigenous Employee Circle (IEC). The purpose of this meeting was to build relationships and share information. IAC members expressed appreciation for this opportunity and would like to continue conversations with the IEC.

Item 5: Opening of Elders Room at C-10 with the Board, IAC, and IEC

This Item advances the Cultural Competency and Change Management Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #14

IAC and Board members, employees from the IEC, the CER Lead Commissioner, Deputy Lead Commissioner, as well as several executives and staff participated in the opening of Elders Room at Centre-10. Elder Donald Rowan and his Helper, David Meguinis, attended the event in-person to open the Elder’s Room with ceremony. Siksika Elders’ Carol Manyheads and Hannah Owl Child, Bearspaw Elder Virginia Wesley, Wesley Elder Winnie Beaver, Chiniki Elder Una Wesley and Elder Toby also attended virtually.

The opening of the Elders Room will help support the Elders-in-Residence program, which is a flagship deliverable under the CER’s Reconciliation strategic priority.

Item 6: Leadership Update

This Item was provided for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4

The Leadership Update from the IAC Chair and Vice-Chairperson included an update on their activities over the intervening months. Discussions pertaining to leadership meetings and CER activities were shared throughout the meeting.

Item 7: CER Progress Update – Report from the Board and Updates to IAC Advice Register; Updates from CER CEO

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3

The Board Chairperson highlighted updates that have been made to the IAC Advice Register and shared the outcome of recent discussions of the Board for awareness:

  • The Board Chairperson expressed appreciation for the opportunity to meet in-person, relationship building, and the transformational IAC-Board work that is currently underway. There was also an acknowledgement of National Public Service Week and the excellent work delivered by CER staff.
  • An update on membership renewal was provided, including an acknowledgement that majority of members will continue with the IAC to July 2023. Staff noted that discussions with the Métis National Council and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami are ongoing to fill vacancies.
  • On the Advice Register, the Chairperson noted that the Board accepted advice received from the March IAC Meeting on Indigenous Monitoring and the CER’s Roadmap for Enhancing the Involvement of Indigenous Peoples in Regulatory Oversight. In addition, CER staff are considering ways to approve the readability of the Advice Register.

The CEO provided updates on a variety of topics including the CER’s ongoing work with the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees for the Trans Mountain and Line 3 pipelines; regulatory matters; the CER’s ongoing work on the next Canada’s Energy Future Report; the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) Review; progress on implementing the Reconciliation strategic priority, and progress to hire a Professional Leader of Reconciliation.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Considering opportunities to measure and communicate the impact of the IAC, including ways to incorporate storytelling.
  • A suggestion to improve collaboration with other bodies, such as the IAMCs and IEC, to understand tangible changes that have been made since the establishment of the IAC.
  • A request to provide the CEO Report in writing and consider shaping it around the five pillars in the IAC’s Work Plan.

Item 8: IAC Terms of Reference

This Item was for Co-Endorsement and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority; Work Plan Deliverable #1

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of the changes made to the IAC Terms of Reference document.

Members requested revisions to Item #16, including deletions and the addition of the word “national” to acknowledge National Indigenous Organizations. The other proposed changes noted in the document were accepted.

The Board and IAC co-endorsed the IAC Terms of Reference by consensus, with the advice described above incorporated.

Day 2: Thursday, June 16, 2022

Item 9: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The IAC Chairperson and Board Chair opened the meeting and welcomed IAC and Board members back to the meeting.

Item 10: Cultural competency and change management

This Item was for Strategic Advice and advances the Cultural Competency and Change Management Work Priority, Work Plan Deliverable #14

The Executive Vice-President Transparency and Strategic Engagement introduced staff. The Director, Indigenous Cultural Competency provided an overview of an early draft of the Indigenous Cultural Competency (ICC) Framework and sought the Board and IAC’s advice and feedback. It was noted that the ICC Framework is intended to be a foundation on which to build a culturally competent organization that supports a culturally competent workforce. An overview of current and future initiatives and deliverables was provided, including an acknowledgement of the launch of the Reconciliation Strategic Priority.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Appreciation for the opportunity to provide early input and recognition that this work assists in making systemic change within the organization.
  • Appreciation for the rigor of the work that was proposed and support for including cultural competency in the organization’s performance process.
  • The Framework should incorporate a distinctions-based approach; recognizing the diversity of First Nations, Inuit, and Metis.
  • Cultural competency expectations should vary across positions with increased expectations for senior leaders. Members highlighted the use of experiential learning.
  • The organization should include Indigenous cultural competency metrics as part of staff performance evaluations. In addition, ways to address staff resistance should be considered.
  • Focus on recruiting Indigenous employees for technical and permanent positions at the CER.
  • The CER may wish to consider revisiting the use of the terminology: cultural competency, cultural understanding, and cultural empathy. Continued dialogue and learning on each other’s worldview is required.
  • Members highlighted the importance of implementing a regional approach, recognizing the diversity of Indigenous peoples across the country.

Item 11: CER Statement on Reconciliation

This Item was for Co-Endorsement and advances the Indigenous Peoples’ involvement in Regulatory Oversight Work Priority; Work Plan Deliverable #18

The Executive Vice-President Transparency and Strategic Engagement provided an overview of the Statement on Reconciliation. Changes to the previous version were highlighted, including input from the various arms of the governance structure and the IEC.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Members offered recognition of the significance of this milestone for the CER.
  • Members sought additional information related to CER staff experiences with systemic racism and discrimination. Staff noted the CER’s Public Service Employee Survey (PSES) results and indicated that this survey would be used to measure progress. Members requested that PSES results provided during future IAC meetings, as well as information on the Diversity and Belonging Initiative.
  • Members suggested that staff consider translating the Statement on Reconciliation into Indigenous languages.
  • Members sought clarity on how the Statement on Reconciliation relates to CER staff. Staff indicated that there is a plan for internally socializing the Statement with staff.
  • Members requested edits to principle 4 to clarify the language used.

The Board and IAC co-endorsed, by consensus, the CER Statement on Reconciliation, with the advice and minor revision described above incorporated.

Item 12: Three-Year IAC Work Plan

This Item was for Co-Endorsement.

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of the changes made to the Three-Year IAC Work Plan, including updates to timelines, noting that the approach was to maintain the plan largely as is recognizing we are only in year two of the plan.

Members requested changes to Items #10 and #11, which included a discussion of work related to the implementation of UN Declaration and a reordering of items. Members also suggested that staff revisit the Work Plan to evaluate key objectives.

The Board and IAC co-endorsed the Three-Year IAC Work Plan, by consensus, with the advice described above incorporated.

Item 13: Walk though IAC Sharepoint (Teams) resources

This Item was for Information and Discussion.

CER staff will follow-up with IAC Members to address challenges accessing the MS Teams page. CER staff will update the IAC’s Teams page and find ways to improve accessibility.

Meeting Feedback

The IAC Chairperson led a discussion on meeting feedback.

Meeting feedback included:

  • A discussion of the difference between strategic role of the IAC and operational role of IAMCs.
  • A suggestion to consider ways to improve communication between the IAC and IAMCs, including sharing the IAC’s Progress and Impact Report and having IAMC members present to the IAC.
  • A request for staff to provide IAC Members with progress letters, which can be shared with external audiences.
  • Members discussed format and length of in person meetings with support for an earlier start (i.e. 9:00 am), and longer days rather than extending over an additional day.
  • A request to review the CER’s land acknowledgement and propose amendments.

Day 3: Friday, June 17, 2021

Item 14: Welcome and Land Acknowledgement

The IAC Chairperson called the meeting to order.

Item 15: Overview of the CER Commission

This item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Crown Consultation and Accommodation Work Priority; Work Plan Deliverable #20.

The Secretary of the Commission offered a land acknowledgement from where she joined the meeting – the traditional unceded territory of the Anishnaabeg People. The following topics were included in the presentation: Commissioner backgrounds, Commission structure, Commission jurisdiction, Commission function, decision-making processes and pathways, and an overview of the Office of the Secretary.

The following discussion was provided:

  • The CEO provided clarity related to interactions between the CEO and Commission, and staff support provided to the Commission.
  • General Counsel provided information on workshops conducted by the Commission and hearing processes.
  • Members raised questions around the Commission’s cultural competency, procedural fairness, and Indigenous knowledge.
  • Staff noted that the CER’s cultural competency framework will include the Commission, Board, and staff.
  • Members highlighted the importance of representation among GIC appointees. Information was provided on the GIC appointment process, and it was suggested that this topic be discussed during future meetings.
  • Members expressed support for providing learnings to the Commission and continuing dialogue with the Secretary and Commissioners.

Item 16: IAC Discussion – Consider an IAC visual

This Item was for Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority; Work Plan Deliverable # 5

A graphic designer from the CER’s communications team presented options for the IAC’s visual identity.

IAC members expressed appreciation for the work presented. Option #1 was approved by consensus by IAC members present, including support for various colour options.

Item 17: Closing Remarks

Elder Jeanette Starlight from Tsuut’ina Nation ended the meeting with a prayer and wished everyone well.

Meeting Adjourned at 11:11 am MT on June 17, 2022

Recording Secretary: Laurel Sherret, Chief of Staff

Meeting Summary: March 2–4, 2022

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) met virtually on 2-4 March 2022. The meeting was opened by Elder John Watson from Ochapowace Nation.

The Chief of Staff opened the conversation with an overview of progress on action items as well as noting that the majority of IAC Members have agreed to continue for a third year with the committee and that the CER will be engaging with National Indigenous Organizations (NIOs), as well as others including the IAC, about the longer- term renewal of IAC membership in summer 2023.

The IAC Leadership provided an update on their communication, engagement, and other activities since the last meeting. IAC Members discussed correspondence directed to the IAC, set in the context of adjudicative matters before the Commission.

The IAC also received updates from the CER Chairperson highlighting recent discussions of the Board and explaining how IAC advice has been incorporated, and from the CEO related to a variety of operational topics including response to flooding in British Columbia, and the safe return of the Trans Mountain and Line 3 pipelines.

The IAC discussed the CER’s Regulatory Framework with a specific focus on the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR). Members highlighted the limited capacity of individuals, Nations, and communities to meaningfully engage in the OPR review, hence the importance of clearly conveying what feedback is being sought and how it may connect to broader legislative and regulatory changes.

The second day of the meeting was opened with a traditional welcoming song and prayer from ElderBlackstockCatherineBlackstockBlackstock, Gitxsan Hereditary Chief.

The IAC reviewed and provided strategic advice on an the CER’s roadmap for enhancing the involvement of Indigenous peoples in regulatory. IAC members emphasized the need to focus on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) articles most salient to the CER’s work to measure the CER’s meaningful implementation of the UN Declaration and the importance of having metrics in place to measure the success of the roadmap and its activities.

IAC Members provided input to company-regulated Indigenous Monitoring Programs in the context of regulatory change and the CER regulatory framework. Members expressed the need to build technical capacity and technical skillsets at the community level so that Indigenous peoples can have meaningful conversations throughout all phases of the project lifecycle. A need for standards to ensure companies are providing appropriate training to Indigenous monitors was also noted.

The IAC was introduced to the Secretary of the Commission who acknowledged the importance of ensuring the advice of the IAC is considered in the Commission’s work at a broad strategic level, noting that the IAC does not provide advice on any decision made by the Commission. IAC Members discussed what a relationship between the Commission and IAC could look like with an introductory meeting between the Commission and the IAC Leadership as a proposed next step.

The meeting concluded with the IAC approving, by consensus, the IAC Progress and Impact Report with a few modifications and moving to a Tier One discussion on proposed updates and clarifications to the IAC Terms of Reference.

Elder Catherine Blackstock ended the meeting with closing remarks and wished everyone well.

Meeting Minutes March 2–4, 2022

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order.

The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder John Watson from Ochapowace Nation, who was introduced by the CER’s Technical Specialist, Indigenous Engagement.

The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting and thanking Elder John Watson for starting off the meeting in a good way.

The Chairperson of the Board provided a land acknowledgement from the traditional and unceded ancestral lands of the Lkwungen People, in particular, the Esquimalt and Songhees First Nations on south Vancouver Island and wished to pay them her respect, while also honouring the traditional territories of all participants. The Board Chairperson acknowledged the amount of valuable advice the IAC has shared with the CER since its establishment.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) offered a land acknowledgement from where she is located – the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The meeting agenda was accepted, as presented.

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of completed and outstanding action items, including a need to continue work to formalize communication between National Indigenous Organization (NIO) direct nominees and their respective nominating organizations. An initial meeting to discuss was held between the three nominated IAC Members and IAC leadership.

It was also noted that IAC Members will be continuing for a third year with the committee. The CER will be engaging with NIOs, as well as others including the IAC, about the longer term renewal of IAC membership in summer 2023. It was suggested that the CER consider the inclusion of additional youth members as part of the 2023 IAC renewal.

IAC Members approved the minutes for the IAC December 15-17, 2021 meeting and the IAC meeting of February  9, 2022.

Item 3: Leadership Update

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4

The IAC Vice-Chairperson summarized the communication, engagement and other activities undertaken by IAC leadership since the last IAC meeting. This included regular meetings with CER and Board leadership to continue to build relationships, discuss the IAC’s work progress, and to provide early feedback on CER initiatives in relation to the IAC.

The Committee discussed correspondence directed to the IAC, set in the context of adjudicative matters before the Commission:

  • The IAC recognizes the adjudicative independence of the Commission. There was a request to look for opportunities for CER and IAC to engage with Nations and communities to hear their concerns and learn how to address them at a broader systematic level.
  • It was suggested that lessons learned be examined, once the adjudication process is concluded.
  • There was a request to develop communication tools that clarify the IAC’s role – specifically that the Committee cannot engage on a specific adjudicative matter, but that it is important for the IAC to be aware of what is happening within the broader context.

Item 4: CER Progress Update – Updates from the Board of Directors and CER CEO; IAC Advice Register

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3

The Board Chairperson highlighted updates that have been made to the IAC Advice Register and also shared the outcome of recent discussions of the Board for awareness:

  • During the February Board Governance Committee meeting potential updates to the IAC Terms of Reference were discussed including:
    • Evolving language to represent the two approaches to how the Board and IAC are working together with regards toseeking strategic advice and the co-development of certain initiatives; and
    • Further clarifying that the IAC does not represent rights holders or replace Crown consultation.
  • The Board decided to extend current IAC Members’ terms by one year, to summer 2023.

The CEO provided updates on a variety of topics including response to flooding in British Columbia, and the safe return of the Trans Mountain pipeline to maximum operating pressure. The CEO discussed the CER’s ongoing work with the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees for the Trans Mountain and Line 3 pipelines; the CER’s flagship Canada’s Energy Future 2021 Report and future work to model net-zero; and the CER’s progress to hire a new Professional Leader, Reconciliation.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The ongoing review process for the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) and the limited capacity of certain Nations and communities to participate. The CEO noted the high level of interest from Indigenous communities and organizations, in particular, that the timeline for the current review has been extended and additional sources of funding for the process are being explored; and
  • The CEO confirmed that two Indigenous Monitors have been hired on a full-time basis by the CER.

Item 5: Regulatory Framework, Governance, and the Onshore Pipeline

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Indigenous Peoples involvement within Regulatory Oversight Work Priority, Deliverable #18

The Executive Vice-President Regulatory provided an overview of the CER’s Regulatory Framework, associated governance roles and responsibilities, with a specific focus on the OPR. The purpose of the presentation was to set the context for the regulatory workshop on Indigenous Monitoring to be held with the IAC on March 3, 2022.

Topics of discussion regarding the OPR review included:

  • A need to clarify the IAC’s role in the OPR review;
  • Considering the potential use of other bodies, such as the Indigenous Advisory Monitoring Committees (IAMCs), to provide a more technical review of the Regulations while the IAC would focus more on the process at a strategic governance level, as per its mandate also noting that IAC advice would not be on behalf of Nations or rights-holders
  • Highlighting that the capacity of individuals and Nations and communities to engage meaningfully is limited; and
  • Noting the importance of clearly conveying what feedback is being sought and how it may connect to broader legislative and regulatory changes.

Day 2: Thursday, 3 March 2022

Item 6: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The IAC Chairperson welcomed back the participants and asked them if they had any thoughts to share from the previous day’s discussion.

It was noted that while the IAC Advice Register is helpful, it would be valuable to capture the key themes articulated by IAC, in particular those that are relevant to common initiatives across the Government of Canada. It would also be important to demonstrate how these key themes effect change and are incorporated into different CER policies and practices.

The meeting was opened with a traditional welcoming song and prayer from Elder Catherine Blackstock, Gitxsan Hereditary Chief, who was introduced by the CER’s Technical Specialist, Indigenous Engagement.

The IAC Chairperson thanked Elder Blackstock for starting the meeting off in a good way.

Item 7: Strategy for Indigenous Peoples’ Involvement in Lifecycle Oversight

This Item was for Strategic Advice and advances the Indigenous Peoples’ involvement in Regulatory Oversight Work Priority, Deliverable # 18

The Executive Vice-President Transparency and Strategic Engagement provided an overview of the CER’s Roadmap for Enhancing the Involvement of Indigenous Peoples in Regulatory Oversight and sought the IAC’s advice and feedback on the CER’s proposed strategy.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • The organization should focus on the articles of the UN Declaration that are most salient to the CER’s work to measure the CER’s meaningful implementation of the UN Declaration.
  • Metrics are required to measure success of the Roadmap and its activities. The organization should consider utilizing a “heat map” or visual image of how the CER is progressing. Additionally, the CER should set progress milestones to successfully pace and track the work.
  • Members highlighted the importance of taking a systemic approach to change. Effective communications tools that help Indigenous peoples, at the community level, understand the relevancy of the CER is critical. The CER should also consider the use of visual content in its communication tools.
  • The CER Regulatory Framework should reflect the diversity of Indigenous perspectives. There is a need for space and flexibility that considers the realities of oversight at the local level.

A need for IAC support to identify Indigenous experts to advise the CER on how to implement the UN Declaration. Need assistance on the interpretation of jurisprudence (case law) both at a systemic and specific level by Indigenous legal experts. Start by holding an exploratory meeting with these individuals to flesh out the key issues to be addressed.

The Executive Vice-President Transparency and Strategic Engagement emphasized that the CER Roadmap is aiming for systematic change; it is a strategy for how the CER will implement regulations and use other specific tools. Any further IAC feedback would be welcome over the next three weeks.

Item 8: Regulatory Workshop: Indigenous Monitoring

This Item was for Strategic Advice and advances the Indigenous Peoples’ involvement in Regulatory Oversight Work Priority, Deliverable #18

The Director Environmental Protection set the stage for the regulatory workshop by providing an overview of company-regulated Indigenous Monitoring Programs (IMPs) in the context of regulatory change and the CER regulatory framework. The purpose of the workshop was

  • To gather strategic advice on the goals and objectives of Regulated Company IMPs; and
  • To inform the OPR review and other potential regulatory framework opportunities.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • Standards need to be in place for training Indigenous Monitors to ensure all companies are providing appropriate training for Indigenous Monitors.
  • Technical capacity needs to be built at the community level to ensure that Indigenous peoples are able to have meaningful conversations throughout all phases of the project lifecycle.
  • Building technical capacity and developing technical skillsets (e.g. in areas of engineering) within communities contributes to the overall economy and wellness of their communities.
  • The process needs to be participatory from the beginning, it needs to cover more than the oversight and construction phase, and it needs to provide opportunities for communities to engage in a meaningful way that includes inviting Indigenous Monitors and/or leadership into the initial planning process for activities. The CER also needs to be mindful of the role of Indigenous leadership and Indigenous monitors in the regulatory oversight process
  • There ae unique geographical attributes of each area and distinct needs of rights-holders in those areas .
  • While current company monitoring programs tend to be site specific and integrated into environmental programs, the CER should consider other aspects of company work throughout the lifecycle of a project that Indigenous monitors could be involved in. For example, Indigenous monitors could be invited to provide input into the environmental assessment and remediation process(es), and energy transition projects.
  • In addition to having Indigenous leaders and monitors involved, ot will be important to also have industry at the table. The discussion with the IAC will help to frame those discussions with industry.

Day 3: Friday, March 4, 2021

Item 9: Preparation for IAC Leadership Meet and Greet with the Commission

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Crown Consultation and Accommodation Work Priority, Deliverable #20

The Chief of Staff introduced the Vice-President Secretary of the Commission who acknowledged the importance of ensuring the advice of the IAC is considered in the Commission’s work at a broad strategic level, noting that the IAC does not provide advice on any particular decision made by the Commission.

Following a roundtable of introductions, the Chief of Staff explained that the purpose of the discussion was to explore what a relationship between the Commission and IAC could look like. An introductory meeting between the Commission and the IAC Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson is proposed in the coming months.

It was noted that any interaction between the Commission and the IAC would proceed with full transparency as outlined in the IAC Terms of Reference.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The importance of developing the relationship between the IAC and Commission first;
  • Giving consideration to potential opportunities for discussion (e.g., providing a debrief to the IAC after adjudicative decisions are made to understand the reasoning behind decisions and develop potential opportunities to learn from one another);
  • A request by the IAC to receive a briefing from CER staff on the functions of the Commission;
  • A list of potential topics for discussion, such as Crown consultation and accommodation, and capacity for Nations to engage; and
  • That the Commission had previously indicated their support of including the development of a relationship with the IAC in their work plan (as conveyed by the Chief of Staff).

Item 10: IAC Annual Progress and Impact Report

This item was for Endorsement and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3

The Chief of Staff reviewed the changes made to the report since the IAC meeting February 9, 2022, including the clarification that IAC Members do not represent rights holders and that the Board retains its legislative authority when initiatives are co-developed between the IAC and Board. The term cultural competency was expanded to cultural competency and humility.

Topics of discussion included

  • A request to include, in the communications materials, language on the IAC’s unique relationship with the CER;
  • A request to adjust language in the ‘About the IAC’ section; and
  • A potential use of a future IAC meeting session to develop a vision statement and core principles for the IAC and potentially revisiting the guiding principles within the IAC Terms of Reference.

The report was approved by consensus with the above changes incorporated.

Item 11: IAC Discussion and Review of Terms of Reference

This Item was for Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverables #1 and 5

Key outcomes of the IAC Discussion included:

  • Discussion of proposed amendments to the Terms of Reference, and agreement to emphasize that work planning, and the items on which the IAC provides strategic advice, are co-developed with the Board; and
  • The tentative plan to meet in-person in June, including the need to understand and ensure robust COVID protocols are followed.

Item 12: Closing Remarks

Elder Catherine Blackstock ended the meeting with closing remarks and wished everyone well.

Meeting Adjourned at 1:00 pm MT on March 4, 2022

Recording Secretary: Katherine Murphy, Chief of Staff

Meeting Minutes: February 9, 2022
Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Item 1: Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order.

Chief Harvey McLeod offered an opening prayer to start the meeting in a positive way.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The meeting agenda was accepted, as presented.

Item 3: Discussion: IAC Role and Approach to Work; Progress To-Date

This Item was for Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority

The IAC Chairperson highlighted that the intent of the discussion is an opportunity to re-centre the work and role of the IAC.

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of a draft IAC Progress & Impact Report highlighting the purpose of the report as well as key areas of progress. The IAC Progress & Impact Report is intended to be an annual report that is shared publicly once finalized.

Discussion included:

  • The Progress and Impact Report is a fair and accurate compilation of progress to-date
  • Future development of metrics or an IAC ‘score-card’
  • The meaning of the report’s ‘progress meter’, and discussion of the progress meter for each Work Priority
  • Cultural competency at the CER, including as it relates to procurement and engagement, and with a suggestion that the CER undertake blanket ceremonies as part of its cultural competency framework
  • The role of the IAC in providing strategic advice and in developing initiatives collaboratively with the Board of Directors
  • Noting that IAC, in delivering its mandate, does not represent rights holders and does not replace the CER’s engagement and Crown consultation with Indigenous peoples
    • The IAC codevelops policies and practices with the CER, which will help the organization consult and accommodate rights holders in alignment with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act
  • Accessibility of the Progress and Impact Report and how it will be shared
  • Support for the direct nominees of the National Indigenous Organizations in communicating the report to their respective Organizations

The next step is for the draft Progress and Impact Report to be discussed with the Board of Directors, then finalized for IAC endorsement at the March Regular Meeting.

Item 4: Closing Remarks

IAC Members provided closing remarks.

Meeting Adjourned at 3:00 pm MT on February 9, 2022

Recording Secretary: Katherine Murphy, Chief of Staff

Meeting Summary: December 15–17, 2021

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) met virtually on December 15–17, 2021. The meeting was opened and closed by Elder Jeannette Starlight from Tsuut’ina Nation.

The meeting began with an update from IAC Leadership on their communication, engagement and other activities since the last meeting. The IAC also received updates from the CER Chairperson highlighting recent discussions of the Board and explaining how IAC advice has been incorporated, and from the CEO related to a variety of topics including recent flooding in British Columbia, and the Commission’s upcoming reviews of pipeline abandonment cost estimates.

The IAC approved a Communications and Engagement Protocol for the Committee.

The IAC reviewed and provided strategic advice on a CER summary of Supreme Court of Canada direction regarding Crown consultation and accommodation. The importance of juxtaposing with the UN Declaration, and ensuring the document captures the perspectives of Indigenous peoples was emphasized.

The IAC reviewed and provided input into a series of items it is co-developing with the Board of Directors on implementing the UN Declaration within the CER’s mandate. The IAC discussed the complexity of mapping key articles of the UN Declaration to the CER’s mandate, and provided feedback on a draft CER Statement on Reconciliation. The IAC considered draft Terms of Reference for a Working Group of Directors and IAC Members on the UN Declaration.

The IAC met with the Co-Chairs of the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs) for Trans Mountain and Line 3. The Indigenous Co-Chairs shared their perspectives and experiences including lessons learned, challenges and recommendations for moving forward with renewal of the IAMCs. The group discussed how the relationship between the IAC and IAMCs could be formalized.

The Members then held an IAC Discussion on Committee progress and next steps.

Meeting Minutes December 15–17, 2021

Day 1: Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order.

The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Jeannette Starlight from Tsuut’ina Nation, who was introduced by the CER’s Technical Specialist, Indigenous Engagement.

The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting and thanking Elder Jeannette Starlight for starting off the meeting in a good way.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) offered a land acknowledgement from where she is located – the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region 3.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The meeting agenda was accepted, as presented.

IAC Members approved the minutes for the IAC August 23, 2021 meeting and the Joint IAC Board meeting August 31 and September 2–3, 2021.

Item 3: Leadership Update

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #4

The IAC Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson summarized the communication, engagement and other activities undertaken by IAC leadership since the last IAC meeting. This included regular meetings with CER leadership and discussions with individual IAC Members including in relation to the pace of the IAC’s progress.

It was noted that the discussions with individual Members could be used to help identify additional areas of work where IAC Members have expressed interest and/or availability. It was suggested that a competency matrix or similar tool be developed for the IAC to reflect Members’ skill sets and areas of interest.

Item 4: CER Progress Update – Update from the Board of Directors; IAC Advice Register; IAC Work Plan

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #3

The Board Chairperson highlighted that updates have been made to the IAC Advice Register and also shared the outcome of recent discussions of the Board for awareness:

  1. The upcoming release, in January 2022, of a discussion paper launching the CER’s review of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPRs), and how it incorporates previous input from the IAC.
  2. A Board discussion on approaches to working with the IAC, including strategic advice and co-development.
  3. A Board decision to offer to extend current IAC Member terms by one year, to summer 2023.

The Chief Executive Officer provided updates on a variety of topics including: CER response to the recent flooding in British Columbia; renewal of the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs); and the Commission of the CER’s upcoming reviews of both Abandonment Cost Estimate and Set-Aside and Collection Mechanisms for all pipeline companies the CER regulates.

The CEO shared that the CER is hiring a Professional Leader, Reconciliation. The CER is seeking interest from an IAC member to advise the EVP, Transparency and Strategic Engagement on the hiring process for this position.

Topics of discussion included:

  • With regard to the OPR discussion paper:
    • The need to build on the lessons learned from the IAMCs to ensure they are applied to new projects.
    • The UN Declaration should be referenced prominently in the OPR to frame the conversation at the community level.
    • Noting that there are some topics in the paper which do not contain a specific discussion question related to Indigenous issues, and to consider adding these.
    • Emergency response to natural disasters, and environmental degradation resulting from natural disasters should be brought into the conversation.
  • With regard to IAC Membership extensions: staggered terms should be considered for continuity.
  • The CER needs to ensure progress is being made and is demonstrable in concrete terms. Some concerns were raised about whether the IAC is having sufficient impact and whether it is fully integrated into the work of the CER.

The CER will update the IAC on feedback received during the engagement phase of the OPR review and the IAC will continue to be engaged during key phases of the multi-year review.

Item 5: IAC Communications and Engagement Protocol

This Item was for Decision and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #6

The Chief of Staff noted that the draft IAC Communications and Engagement Protocol had been updated to reflect the IAC’s September 2021 comments related to the role of the Vice-Chair and media enquiries.

The IAC approved the Communications and Engagement Protocol by consensus.

Item 6: Supreme Court of Canada Direction on Crown Consultation and Accommodation

This Item was for Strategic Advice and advances the Crown Consultation and Accommodation Work Priority, Deliverable #19

The Executive Vice-President Law and General Counsel provided an overview of a CER document that summarizes Supreme Court of Canada’s (SCC) direction regarding Crown consultation and accommodation. The document is a foundational piece to be used as a resource moving forward.

The following strategic advice was provided:

  • The UN Declaration goes beyond the SCC’s direction on crown consultation and accommodation. Future work should juxtapose the two. The greatest opportunity to reflect the UN Declaration might be through implementing Free Prior and Informed Consent.
  • While the document effectively captures the CER’s perspective of SCC decisions, it does not reflect the Nations’ perspectives. Further engagement with Indigenous experts will be an important step to ensure Indigenous perspectives are considered in the interpretation of SCC decisions.
  • An introductory roadmap to be added to assist with navigation of the document as well as a listing of the definitions of the legal terms used.
The IAC Chairperson encouraged Members to share any additional comments with General Counsel. This item will return to the IAC, and to include how the CER applies the SCC’s direction to its Crown consultation and accommodation approach.

Day 2: Thursday, December 16, 2021

Item 7: Implementing the UN Declaration within the CER’s mandate

These Items were for Co-Development and advance the UN Declaration Work Priority, Deliverables #10-13

Application of the UN Declaration within the CER’s mandate

The Executive Vice-President Law and General Counsel provided an overview of the CER’s proposed approach to implementing the UN Declaration and sought the IAC’s input on a foundational document to inform the CER’s understanding of where there is a connection between key articles of the UN Declaration and the CER mandate.

Input provided to the co-development process:

  • Mapping out how the key articles of the UN Declaration link to the CER’s mandate is a complex process.
    • Further discussion at the IAC and/or within the proposed IAC-Board UN Declaration Working Group, and with the direct input of rights-holders and Indigenous experts, will be required to help ensure the implementation of key articles are aligned with Indigenous perspectives.
    • The exercise of linking key UN Declaration articles to the CER mandate provides an opportunity for the IAC to help the CER shape the principles and processes to better recognize Indigenous rights in the work on the ground.
  • A need to incorporate meaningful measures to monitor the progress of implementation within a specific timeframe.

Draft Statement on Reconciliation

The Executive Vice-President Transparency and Strategic Engagement provided an overview and sought the IAC’s input on the CER’s draft Statement on Reconciliation, specifically whether it captures the IAC’s earlier input and inspires transformational change in how the CER will move forward with Reconciliation.

Input provided to the co-development process:

  • Recognizing that this is a working document, there were no significant issues raised with the wording of the draft statement. There was a request for inclusion of the link between the CER and the Minister of Natural Resources as the organization is only one part of the larger federal government.
  • The IAC’s role is to provide strategic advice to the Board; Members do not represent rights holders or provide a conduit between the CER and Nations. It is the CER’s responsibility to consult with Nations.
  • The statement is a good way for the CER to communicate its intent and commitment with regard to its journey towards Reconciliation.

The Chairperson of the Board noted that it is important that the CER and the IAC are building these pieces as a collaborative process. Co-development of the Statement on Reconciliation should take the time necessary for the IAC and the Board of Directors to develop a statement that resonates with both groups.

Terms of Reference for IAC Working Group on UN Declaration

The CER Chief of Staff provided an overview of the proposed IAC-Board working group on the UN Declaration and sought IAC endorsement of their Terms of Reference. The working group would be a mechanism for CER staff to get early input on CER initiatives related to the implementation of the UN Declaration. The Group would not have delegated authority; formal advice on specific deliverables would come from the full IAC and Board of Directors.

Input provided to the co-development process:

  • The Working Group should consider how and where it should focus its efforts in carrying out the work.
  • There was a discussion about IAC members seeking feedback on items from outside consultants, and questions regarding resources for the IAC were discussed.

The IAC Chairperson encouraged IAC members to take a closer look at the Terms of Reference for the Working Group with the goal to endorse it and move forward in the New Year.

Day 3: Friday, December 17, 2021

Item 8: Annual Engagement with Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees’ Indigenous co-chairs

This Item was for Information and Discussion and advances the Relationships and Governance Work Priority, Deliverable #8

The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks on the opportunities for learning between the IAC and the IAMCs and the need to elevate the lessons learned to a more strategic level. This discussion is an opportunity to begin the conversation on how to formalize the relationship between the three committees.

The Executive Vice-President Transparency and Engagement and the CER Chief of Staff provided an overview of the two IAMCs and IAC.

Following the initial presentation, the IAMC Indigenous Co-Chairs shared their perspectives and experiences, including lessons learned, challenges and recommendations for moving forward with renewal of their funding program for the next five years.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The challenge of reaching consensus on shared priorities for IAMC renewal across multiple departments and with the Indigenous caucus. The challenge of conducting lifecycle work under a temporary funding model.
  • The need for and impact of deep culture change within federal government departments, and the significant risk of inaction.
  • The impact of the recent flooding on Indigenous communities in British Columbia highlighted the need for the IAMCs and Indigenous Monitors to maintain their role in emergency response management. The IAMCs should broaden their role in providing advice to regulators.
    • Indigenous monitors are connected to the land and communities which allows them to bring the voices of the Elders and a rich understanding of the land to their role as monitors.
  • Increased hiring of Indigenous peoples to roles throughout the CER will achieve a sustainable and more inclusive community.
  • The role of the CER in ensuring the proponent conducts adequate engagement with impacted Nations.
  • The objective of the IAMC’s to move from an advisory role to an oversight role.

As a next step in developing a formalized relationship between the two IAMCs and the IAC, it was proposed that a presentation to the IAMCs on the IAC be given. The Chief of Staff will coordinate with IAC leadership.

Item 9: IAC Discussion

The IAC went in-camera (with the Chief of Staff) to discuss priorities, progress, and next steps. Action items from the IAC Discussion are:

  • A meeting between IAC leadership and the three Members directly nominated to the IAC by National Indigenous Organizations
  • Consider a longer IAC Discussion in the New Year (one or two meetings) to discuss the IAC approach to working and progress, including co-development and strategic advice, and measuring progress and success.
  • Chief of Staff to confirm with individual IAC Members if they wish to extend their terms by one year.
  • Two IAC Members were identified to advise the EVP Transparency and Strategic Engagement on the hiring process for the Professional Leader, Reconciliation.

Item 10: Closing Remarks

Elder Jeannette Starlight ended the meeting with a closing prayer and wished everyone well.

Meeting Adjourned at 1:00 pm MT on December 17, 2021

Recording Secretary: Katherine Murphy, Chief of Staff

Meeting Summary: August 31 and September 2–3, 2021

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) met virtually on August 31 and September 2–3, 2021. The Board of Directors participated in the meeting on August 31 and September 2. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Vera Marie Crowchild from Tsuut’ina Nation.

The CER Executive Vice-President Law and General Counsel opened a conversation on the CER’s path towards reconciliation. IAC Members and Directors agreed to co-develop a Statement on Reconciliation, based on a set of principles or commitments which are grounded in the work of the regulator.

A subsequent item was presented by the Executive Vice-President Regulatory on a draft Indigenous Knowledge Policy Framework, led by the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada. IAC Member and Director views were sought on the draft Framework in the CER’s context. Discussion highlighted the challenges of a single policy framework that covers First Nations, Métis, and Inuit perspectives as well as all communities. Further, discussion highlighted the need to consider the draft principles through the lens of the UN Declaration and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act.

An upcoming review of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPRs) was discussed, with a focus on the engagement process. Discussion included the need to analyze feedback that has been received to date on the OPRs as a means to inform the engagement process and areas that require updates. Members also expressed interest in understanding how the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act would be considered within the OPR review along with other potential subjects such as economic reconciliation and energy transition.

The Chief of Staff proposed, for IAC discussion, an initial approach to additional IAC work between quarterly meetings with a goal to build and maintain relationships, increase awareness and capacity of the CER and its mandate, ensure the IAC is fully integrated into the CER’s governance structure, and help deliver on the ambitious work plan. Further discussion will follow at the next IAC meeting.

The Members then entered a Tier One discussion to discuss priorities, interests, and next steps.

Meeting Minutes August 31 and September 2–3, 2021

Day 1: Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order.

The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Vera Marie Crowchild from Tsuut’ina Nation, who was introduced by the CER’s Technical Leader, Indigenous Advisor and Cultural Protocol.

The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting and thanking Elder Vera Marie Crowchild for starting off the meeting in a good way.

The Board Chairperson provided a land acknowledgement from the territories she was participating from on Vancouver Island, while also honouring the traditional territories of all participants. The Board Chairperson noted that it was the first anniversary since the establishment of the IAC and that it has been a shared learning journey together.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The meeting agenda was accepted, as presented.

Item 3: Roundtable

Three new CER Directors had been appointed since the last IAC meeting. Through a roundtable, IAC Member and Directors of the Board introduced themselves; sharing where they were joining from, and why they joined the IAC or the Board of Directors.

Item 4: CER Progress Update – Update from the Board of Directors; IAC Advice Register; IAC Work Plan

The Board Chairperson provided an update on the IAC Advice Register and the IAC Work Plan noting:

  • The IAC work plan is ambitious, and the Board is supportive. The document will be evergreen and flexible as the work evolves.
  • Updates have been made to the Work Plan as a result of Board, IAC and staff feedback including:
    • Furthering alignment between the strategic plan and IAC work plan.
    • Clarifying that co-development work to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) is subject to the broader work that the Government of Canada is undertaking.
    • Adding reference to relevant articles of the UN Declaration and to include other seminal reports such as the report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and of the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls.
  • CER Staff have developed a visual of the Work Plan as a tool to communicate the IAC’s work plan. IAC Members were encouraged to provide feedback at any time.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Appreciation for the IAC Advice Register as well as a request to add the date for when IAC advice was received. The group identified a need to, over time, discern which items are advice and which are for action, by whom (i.e., CER, Board, IAC), and over what timeframe. Members emphasized the importance of seeing the impact of their advice and how it was implemented.
  • IAC Members noted that several federal departments have established Indigenous Advisory Committees and requested staff provide an overview on which committees are in place as well as their mandates and membership.
  • Members expressed interest in understanding the evolving legal landscape related to how the CER’s work impacts Indigenous peoples exercising their rights. The Chief of Staff noted that, as an example, an analysis will be coming forward to the IAC regarding the legal landscape relating to the CER’s Crown Consultation approach.

Item 5: Working Definition of Reconciliation

As part of the UN Declaration IAC Work Priority, this item is co-developed between the IAC and the Board.

The CER Executive Vice-President Law and General Counsel opened the item by providing context on the item stemming from the IAC Work Plan and implementation plan of the Reconciliation Strategic Priority. With early input from IAC and Board Leadership, the item is being presented to support a conversation between the Board and IAC on the path forward towards reconciliation and how best to collaboratively approach this effort.

The IAC and Board agreed to co-develop a Statement on Reconciliation, based on a set of principles or commitments which are grounded in the work of the regulator. The following strategic advice was given to be incorporated into the co-development process:

  • The CER should not seek to “define” reconciliation.
  • Reconciliation should be described as a journey with the principles reflecting the fact that we are on a shared path, inclusive of co-development. The UN Declaration is a framework for reconciliation.
  • Test the principles against past activity(ies) to discover how the principles work in practice.
  • Identify how the government’s commitments to implementing the UN Declaration may reconcile with the CER’s current regulatory regime and practices.
  • Set up a conversation between industry and the CER on what implementing reconciliation looks like.
  • Engage National Indigenous Organizations and individual Nations and communities on the CER’s approach to reconciliation.

Day 2: Thursday, September 2, 2021

Item 6: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Vera Marie Crowchild from Tsuut’ina Nation.

The IAC Chairperson welcomed participants back to the meeting and thanked Elder Vera Marie Crowchild for starting off the meeting in a good way.

The Board Chairperson acknowledged the territories of all participants, thanking IAC and Board members for openly sharing their thoughts about reconciliation during the previous day’s discussion.

Item 7: Government of Canada Indigenous Knowledge Policy Framework

As part of the Crown Consultation and Accommodation IAC Work Priority, the IAC provided advice and input to the Board on this item.

The Executive Vice-President Regulatory provided an overview of the development and content of the draft Indigenous Knowledge Policy Framework, led by the Impact Assessment Agency, and sought the IAC and Board of Directors’ advice on the draft Framework in the CER’s context.

Advice and input included:

  • It is challenging to develop a single policy framework that incorporates First Nations, Métis and Inuit perspectives as well as all communities. Indigenous law and Indigenous science are encompassed in Indigenous knowledge.
  • Replace the word “consideration” within principal three as it diminishes the intent of what the UN Declaration calls for. Instead, refer to “incorporation and integration” of Indigenous knowledge.
  • Though recognizing it is First Nations specific, there is a connection with principles of OCAP (Ownership, Control, Access and Possession) – a tool to support information governance on the path to First Nations data sovereignty.
  • There is a need for earnest engagement at the community level recognizing that there is work going on across the country. Further, the draft principles should be evaluated through the lens of the UN Declaration and Bill C-15.

The Vice President Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation confirmed that feedback will be provided to the Impact Assessment Agency and that the discussion will continue. Further, he confirmed that CER specific guidance would be developed once the Indigenous Knowledge Policy Framework is in place.

Item 8: Onshore Pipeline Regulations: Overview and process for amendment

As part of the Indigenous Peoples’ Involvement in Regulatory Oversight IAC Work Priority, the IAC provided advice and input to the Board on this item.

The Executive Vice-President Regulatory provided an overview of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPRs) and the scope of the upcoming regulatory review noting that the work to date has benefited from feedback received from the Indigenous Advisory Monitoring Committees (IAMCs) on the current regulations. The purpose of the presentation was to seek advice and input on the upcoming CER engagement and review process.

Advice and input included:

  • The CER should identify and analyze the feedback that has been received to date on the OPRs through Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees and from Indigenous communities to inform the engagement process and areas that require updates. Acknowledging what has already been heard by the CER helps support a respectful start to the engagement forward.
  • The CER should articulate how Bill C-15 would be considered as part of the OPR review. There was general recognition that there is a desire to disrupt how process and requirements were previously set, to appropriately incorporate Indigenous rights and perspectives.
  • The CER should identify how jurisdictional issues, economic reconciliation, energy transition, industry standards and change management may be incorporated into the OPR and/or the review process.

Item 9: Closing Remarks

Elder Vera Marie Crowchild wished everyone well.

Day 3: Friday, September 3, 2021

Item 10: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Vera Marie Crowchild from Tsuut’ina Nation.

Item 11: Proposed Approach to Working Between Meetings

As a result of feedback from IAC Members and in the course of developing the IAC Work Plan a discussion on the potential of IAC work between meetings was requested by the Committee. The Chief of Staff noted that the purpose of potential additional work would be to build and maintain relationships, increase awareness and capacity of the CER and its mandate, ensure the IAC is fully integrated into the CER’s governance structure, and help deliver on the ambitious work plan. A variety of options were presented and discussed.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Recognition that there is varying capacity between IAC Members and that any work between meetings would be optional. It will be important to have occasional check-ins with members who do not have the ability to participate more frequently. It was emphasized that all work of the IAC is to be at the strategic level and within the IAC mandate, as outlined in the Terms of Reference.
  • IAC Members requested additional clarity on scope and purpose of potential small-group work to assist Members in understanding how these may work (i.e., that a draft Terms of Reference be prepared for Committee consideration). At the same time, general recognition that not all work needs to be through formal venues and may occur through less formal discussions.
  • The need to be able to see, and show, the tangible impact of the IAC while considering the pace of change for the organization and work within our mandate.

Item 12: IAC Tier One Discussion

The IAC went in camera to discuss priorities, progress, and next steps.

In a de-brief of the Tier One discussion, the following points were highlighted:

  • Going forward, for Tier One discussions, IAC Members will meet alone to start, with the Chief of Staff joining the session part way through.
  • The Chief of Staff will summarize key take-aways from meetings held between IAC leadership and individual Members.
  • IAC leadership would like to meet with the Indigenous co-chairs of the IAMCs to discuss how the mandate of the Committees can work together.
  • There is a desire to better understand what resources the CER has at hand to support the work of the IAC (e.g., in terms of working with external experts).
  • IAC leadership may extend the November meetings (e.g., by an hour each day) depending on the Agendas, to ensure enough time for discussion.
  • It was noted that CER hiring processes impact and reflect on the IAC and advising on these processes is something the IAC can be engaged in.

Item 13: Closing Remarks

Elder Vera Marie Crowchild encouraged participants to stay safe and healthy, take care of themselves and family, and not work too hard on the important tasks ahead.

Meeting Adjourned at 1:00 pm MT on September 3, 2021

Recording Secretary: Katherine Murphy, Chief of Staff

Meeting Summary: August 23, 2021

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) met virtually on August 23, 2021. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Chief Harvey McLeod.

IAC leadership provided a report to the Committee on their communication, engagement, and other activities over the previous quarter. The Chief of Staff provided a presentation, for discussion, of the CER governance and organization structure.

The Chief of Staff introduced for IAC feedback a Communications and Engagement Protocol to support efficient, meaningful, and effective communication and engagement by the IAC Members with CER staff and external parties. The Committee discussed the Agenda for the upcoming Joint IAC and Board of Directors Meeting, and the CER General Counsel attended to discuss, for feedback, the approach to an item on a Statement on Reconciliation. The IAC had a Tier One discussion, and the IAC Chairperson closed the meeting.

Meeting Minutes August 23, 2021

Monday, August 23, 2021

Item 1: Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Chief Harvey McLeod.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) offered a land acknowledgement from where she is located – the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Blackfoot Confederacy (comprising the Siksika, Piikani, and Kainai First Nations). Treaty 7 territory also includes the Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Stoney Nakoda (including the Chiniki, Bearspaw, and Wesley First Nations). The City of Calgary is home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region 3.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The meeting agenda was reviewed and IAC Members approved the minutes for the May 4–5, 2021 meeting.

The Chief of Staff noted that current health measures in place for the CER, as a federal government entity, continue to restrict non-essential interprovincial travel. When feasible, in-person meetings of the IAC will be organized recognizing the benefits of meeting together.

The IAC Members endorsed a new approach for a meeting summary being approved by the IAC Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson immediately following the IAC meeting, to enable timely and transparent communication of IAC activities, prior to formal approval of the full meeting minutes at the next regular IAC meeting.

Item 3: IAC Leadership Update

The IAC Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson provided a written summary report of their ongoing meetings with the CER, together with any key communications of relevance. The Chairperson summarized activities undertaken by IAC leadership since the May IAC Meeting including:

  • Regular meetings with CER leadership to build relationships and offer considerations on Indigenous-related matters.
  • An information sharing meeting with the Co-chairs of the IAC of the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada that focused on the composition and expertise of the Committees, their respective work plans and areas of potential cross-over.

Areas of discussion included

  • The importance of understanding the breadth of the work the CER is doing related to Indigenous peoples and how the IAC can have an impact over the longer term;
  • The need to be conscious of the IAC scope and mandate and IAC Members best use of their time with consideration of the unique knowledge and skills of specific members; and
  • Agreement that IAC members who would like to suggest a topic for an IAC Agenda can reach out to IAC leadership who would consider and potentially raise at a Leadership meeting, add it to an Agenda or Tier One discussion, or as otherwise appropriate.

Item 4: CER Organizational Structure

Responding to a prior request of the IAC, the Chief of Staff provided a written and verbal overview of the CER organization structure including how the CER fits within the Natural Resources Canada portfolio, CER governance structure, including roles and responsibilities of each arm of the governance structure; and organization chart noting that the IAC material comes together from across the organization and IAC advice is integrated back into each of those areas.

Areas of discussion included:

  • Appreciation was noted for gaining a stronger understanding of how the CER is organized. The IAC Chairperson suggested that the CER organizational chart include the IAC with a direct line to the Board.
  • The IAC Chairperson and CEO confirmed that the Chief of Staff is the main point of contact from the CER. CER staff requests of the IAC would come through the Chief of Staff in an effort to contextualize and organize requests. The Chief of Staff will give consideration, working with IAC leadership, to providing guidance for IAC members if they receive a request or information from CER staff directly.

Item 5: IAC Communications and Engagement Protocol

The Chief of Staff presented a draft IAC Communications and Engagement Protocol for discussion and feedback. The protocol is intended to support efficient, meaningful, and effective communication and engagement by the IAC Members with CER staff; as well as with external parties including Indigenous Nations, communities, and organizations, the CER’s regulated industry, other stakeholders, and media.

Areas of discussion included:

  • The Chief of Staff noting future opportunities for IAC Members to meet with CER staff.
  • Consideration for communication between the three IAC Members that are direct nominees of National Indigenous Organizations (NIOs) and their respective nominating organization, as well as regular communication from the CER to the NIOs. Discussion of potential information updates to share and an interest in further conversation on how this may occur. IAC leadership will take this away for further discussion with CER leadership and come back to the Committee. IAC members discussed desire for timely information updates which they can share.

The Chief of Staff will circulate the draft protocol to IAC Members via email for additional comments. The protocol will be brought back to the IAC at the November meeting for formal endorsement. However, as the content is not materially new, the CER would continue to operationalize it in practice in the meantime. 

Item 6: September Meeting Look-Ahead

Agenda for September Meetings

The Chief of Staff walked through the Agenda items for the meetings on Augusut 31 and September 2–3, 2021.

The CER Executive Vice-President Law and General Counsel provided context on the agenda item on a working definition of Reconciliation in the CER context; a deliverable in the IAC work plan under the UN Declaration priority. Incorporating guidance from IAC and Board Leadership, staff are bringing forward an item that shifts focus from defining reconciliation to articulating the CER’s overall path forward to achieve reconciliation through the implementation of the UN Declaration. This path forward would also align with the CER’s Reconciliation Strategic Priority.

Areas of discussion included:

  • The IAC Chairperson noted the importance of inviting IAC members to engage in early discussions of CER initiatives.
  • Consideration of outside speakers or facilitated conversation with external individuals for the IAC to discuss topics such as regulations, Crown Consultation, etc.
  • The importance of discussing the implementation of recommendations and plans to ensure intended impacts.

Item 7: IAC Tier One Discussion

IAC members held a Tier One discussion.

IAC Chairperson closed the meeting.

Meeting Adjourned at approximately 1:00 pm MT on August 23, 2021

Recording Secretary: Katherine Murphy, Chief of Staff

Meeting Summary: May 4–5, 2021

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) met virtually on May 4–5, 2001. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Doreen Bergum from the Métis Nation of Alberta Region 3.

The Chief of Staff introduced an IAC Advice Register as a standing item to track IAC advice, CER Board responses and the status of any implementation. IAC members agreed with the overall structure, and to the use of this document as a tracking tool, going forward.

The Vice-President Field Operations provided an overview of Indigenous peoples’ involvement in compliance and oversight with the CER, with a focus on Indigenous monitoring, to start the discussion on lessons learned and possible approaches to co-development of a broader, systemic approach for CER-regulated infrastructure. IAC members expressed a desire to strengthen the relationship between the IAC and IAMCs to ensure IAMC lessons learned can be brought to the IAC to be incorporated into their strategic advice to the CER. Members also highlighted the importance of sustained and targeted training for Indigenous monitors, and in finding ways to expand the role such that it is full-time, long-term, and stable with consideration being given to mentoring and succession planning.

The members then entered into a Tier One discussion, without CER staff present.

The second day began with a summary from the IAC Tier One discussion. IAC members confirmed Tribal Chief Tyrone McNeil as the IAC Chairperson and Kaella-Marie Earle as IAC Vice-Chairperson for a term ending July 31, 2022. Members expressed an interest in engaging in a dialogue on energy transition and the need to obtain clarity on their role and space within the CER, to allow them to effectively provide advice and influence change.

The next substantive item discussed was the IAC work plan. Key topics of discussion included the work priority related to Crown Consultation and Accommodation; and the importance of clear communication of technical information. The IAC work plan was endorsed, in principle, recognizing that it is a living document that will be continually improved and maintained in an evergreen manner.

The remainder of the meeting was devoted to a presentation from Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond on the implementation of the UN Declaration in the CER context, through her reflections on Bill C-15 An Act Respecting the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Ms. Turpel-Lafond noted the importance of the CER, working collaboratively with the IAC, to develop tools on key aspects of the UN Declaration. Participants’ reflections included the importance of the CER continuing to engage a team of Indigenous thought leaders on implementing the UN Declaration. The CER was encouraged, with the assistance and advice of IAC members, to put a UN Declaration lens on its regulatory tools and continue to break new ground.

Meeting Minutes May 4–5 2021
Day 1: Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order. Participants were asked to take a moment of silence to remember all those who had been lost to COVID-19 in their communities and beyond.

The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Doreen Bergum from the Métis Nation Alberta Region 3, who was introduced by the Canada Energy Regulator’s (CER) Technical Leader, Indigenous Advisor and Cultural Protocol.

The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks, welcoming participants to the meeting and noting several items that were upcoming on the agenda, including a draft work plan.

The Board Chairperson provided a land acknowledgement from the territories she was participating from in south Vancouver Island, also honouring the traditional territories of all participants.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The meeting agenda was accepted, as presented.

The Chief of Staff asked IAC members if they had any concerns with the minutes for the February 4–5, 2021 meeting. None were noted. Members approved the minutes.

Item 3: CER Progress Update – IAC Leadership Report; IAC Advice Register

IAC Leadership Report

The IAC Chairperson summarized the communication, engagement and other activities undertaken by IAC leadership since the February IAC Meeting including:

  • Regular meetings with CER leadership to build relationships and test items or initiatives in relation to the IAC.
  • Interviews on two external assessments; namely, on the CER’s communications approach and the CER’s governance structure.
  • Media interviews conducted following the release of the IAC Terms of Reference. IAC members asked questions about IAC leadership activities, and noted the importance of ensuring Métis, Inuit and First Nations perspectives are reflected in external assessments conducted by the CER.

IAC Advice Register

The Chief of Staff introduced an IAC Advice Register as a standing item to track IAC advice, CER Board responses and the status of implementation.

Members discussed the format and structure of the IAC Advice Register.

Suggested amendments included:

  • Adding a reference in the far right hand column, to relevant articles of the UN Declaration (in particular for the CER context – Articles 3, 19, 23, 32, 46); which could also be expanded to include other seminal reports such as the report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and of the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls.
  • Creating a separate tab that only includes the IAC advice column (categorized by topic).

Following the discussion, IAC members accepted the overall structure, and agreed to the use of this document as a tracking tool going forward.

Item 4: Indigenous Peoples’ Involvement in Regulatory Oversight

The CER Executive Vice-President Regulatory gave opening comments.

The Vice-President Field Operations provided an overview of Indigenous peoples’ involvement in compliance and oversight, with a focus on Indigenous monitoring. The purpose of the presentation was to start the discussion on lessons learned, future objectives, and possible approaches to co-development of a broader, systemic approach to compliance and oversight, for CER-regulated infrastructure.

Key topics and discussion points raised during and following the presentation included:

  • The development of the two Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs) and related Indigenous monitoring programs have created opportunities for Indigenous Nations to provide an Indigenous lens to regulatory oversight. The CER has gained a greater appreciation for the value that Indigenous monitors bring.
  • IAC members expressed a desire to strengthen the relationship between the IAC and IAMCs, and suggested ways of doing so. This will allow the IAMC learnings on the ground to be incorporated into the IAC's strategic advice to the CER.
  • Members suggested that staff working on Indigenous monitoring programs at the CER review the TMX line wide gathering report (December 2020) for information and ideas.
  • Members further highlighted the importance of sustained and targeted training for Indigenous monitors, and encouraged the CER and others to find ways to expand the role, such that it could be a full-time, long-term, meaningful, and stable position. The importance of succession planning and mentorship was also noted.
Members noted the importance of having a reporting structure, whereby Indigenous monitors report back to their Nations as opposed to the CER or industry.

Item 5: IAC Tier One Discussion- Confirmation of IAC Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson

Day 2: Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Item 6: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Doreen Bergum from the Métis Nation Alberta Region 3.

The Technical Leader, Indigenous Advisor and Cultural Protocol provided a land acknowledgement from the territories she was participating from in Calgary, Alberta, also honouring the traditional territories of all participants.

Item 7: De-brief from IAC Tier One Discussion

The IAC Chairperson provided a summary of the members’ in camera discussion noting:

  • Members moved to identify Tribal Chief Tyrone McNeil as the IAC Chairperson and Kaella-Marie Earle as IAC Vice-Chairperson for a term ending July 31, 2022. Passed by consensus.
  • Members expressed an interest in engaging in a dialogue on energy transition. This will allow Indigenous voices to be included in energy policy being developed, as the system transitions (historically, energy policy has been developed without Indigenous voices). This dialogue could be through work on Energy Futures, or other initiatives.
  • Members discussed the need to obtain clarity on their role and space within the CER, to allow them to effectively provide advice and influence change. Specific ideas discussed were to meet more regularly (including amongst themselves); and to obtain information on the CER organizational structure.
  • Members noted their general comfort with receiving drafts of work products from CER staff

Item 8: Work Plan

The Chief of Staff provided an overview of the IAC work plan, for discussion and endorsement.

During the discussion, members raised the following points on the format and content of the work plan:

  • Members discussed expanding the title of the "Crown Consultation" priority in the work plan, to become "Crown Consultation and Accommodation".
  • Members discussed expanding the description of the UN Declaration priority to include a focus on specific Articles of the Declaration and reference to other seminal reports such as the report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and of the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls.
  • IAC members discussed the importance of clear communications and noted the ambition of the work plan. A suggestion was made for certain IAC members to support the CER, in reframing technical information and documents (initially the IAC work plan), to make them more accessible.
  • Consider use of case study format, to consider and contrast an issue from the perspective of each of First Nations (Treaty), First Nations (non-Treaty), Métis, and Inuit.

Following their discussion, members moved to endorse, in principle, the IAC work plan, recognizing that it is a living document and will be continually improved and maintained in an evergreen manner, including through additional discussions and input from the Committee. The motion carried on a consensus basis.

The Chief of Staff indicated that she would continue to discuss the above points with IAC and Board to make continual improvements. The next step will be for the IAC work plan to be brought to the upcoming meeting of the Board for review.

Item 9: UN Declaration in the CER Context

The IAC Chairperson welcomed guest speaker Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond. The IAC Chairperson also noted that the Board of Directors were in attendance for the presentation, to further joint learning on the UN Declaration.

The CER Executive Vice-President Law and General Counsel provided brief opening remarks, noting Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond’s recent appearance at the House of Commons Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs in the review of Bill C-15 An Act Respecting the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Ms. Turpel-Lafond then provided a framework for understanding the implementation of the UN Declaration in the CER context through her reflections on Bill C-15.

Key topics and discussion points raised during and following the presentation included:

  • Bill C-15 lays the foundation for transformational change. The goal of the proposed legislation is to move from transactional exchanges with Indigenous peoples to transformational and relational structures based on human rights principles. Bill C-15 provides the opportunity to shift relationships with Indigenous peoples.
  • In discussing Bill C-15 specifically, Ms. Turpel-Lafond noted that the UN Declaration could be seen as a framework to understand s.35 of the Canadian Constitution; the Declaration will reset Crown relationships, laws and policies, and should result in a more pragmatic approach to resolve conflicts (outside of the Courts).
  • Ms. Turpel-Lafond further discussed how to move from the high-level principles articulated in the UN Declaration to the practical work of implementation. She noted that developing the right tools will be important in helping to create the path to implement the UN Declaration.
  • A number of potential tools were noted for the CER context, namely:
    • Develop a process for the identification of Indigenous governing bodies, who appropriately represent rights and title holders;
    • Develop a tool to apply the concept of Free Prior and Informed Consent within the CER’s regulatory responsibilities;
    • Develop a tool to consider sustainable development and climate change innovation for Indigenous communities.
  • IAC members discussed the importance of the CER continuing to engage a team of Indigenous thought leaders on implementing the UN Declaration.
  • In response to Committee member and Director questions, Ms. Turpel-Lafond noted that the CER will need to undertake both “forward facing” work (collaboratively developing tools in the area of energy regulation) and inward facing work (cultivating tools of cultural humility, which is focused on changing mindsets, rather than a specific outcome).
  • Members discussed replacing "culture competence" with “cultural humility”, which is more reflective of an ongoing life journey; a mindset as opposed to an outcome.

The CER was encouraged, with the assistance and advice of IAC members, to put a UN Declaration lens on its regulatory tools and continue to break new ground.

Item 10: Closing Remarks

Elder Doreen Bergum gave a closing prayer.

The IAC Chairperson and Chief of Staff provided brief closing remarks.

Meeting Adjourned at 1:14 pm MT on May 5, 2021

Recording Secretary: Katherine Murphy, Chief of Staff

Meeting Summary: February 4-5, 2021

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) and the Board of Directors met virtually on February 4–5, 2021. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Doreen Bergum from the Métis Nation of Alberta Region 3, and a land acknowledgement from the Board Chairperson, from south Vancouver Island.

The first substantive item discussed was the draft IAC Terms of Reference (ToR). The CER Chief of Staff thanked IAC members who assisted in clarifying the terminology in the ToR related to the Métis Nation and the role of members appointed by the National Indigenous Organizations. It was noted that the ToR was also amended to reflect a continual approval approach. The ToR were co-endorsed by all participating Directors and IAC members.

The Vice President Energy Adjudication provided an overview and sought IAC advice on the CER’s approach to Crown Consultation; including work being undertaken and planned. The discussion following the presentation focused on the need for the CER to clearly define the roles and processes though the consultation process and for Indigenous perspectives obtained through consultation to be integrated from the earliest stages, and incorporated throughout, as part of the hearing process. Capacity gaps were also identified as a significant barrier to meaningful and effective consultation.

The second day began with a presentation from International Chief Wilton Littlechild on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration). Chief Littlechild provided a framework for understanding the UN Declaration, through his reflections and experiences on the creation and history of the UN Declaration. Chief Littlechild provided important context to the Articles of the UN Declaration all of which are positive, solution-based, and represent minimum standards of human rights. Participants’ reflections on the discussion focused on the importance of a clear and unequivocal commitment to implementing the UN Declaration, and of not taking a legalistic approach. The importance of working together was emphasized throughout the discussion.

The remainder of the meeting was devoted to a discussion on a draft IAC work plan. Key topics of discussion included how to most effectively set and understand work priorities, and evaluate progress on an annual basis. The CER will have one-on-one discussions with individual members before the next meeting; comments will be incorporated, and a revised work plan will be brought back for co-endorsement in the spring.

Meeting Minutes February 4–5, 2021
Day 1: Thursday, February 4, 2021

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson called the meeting to order. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Doreen Bergum from the Métis Nation Alberta Region 3, who was introduced by the Canada Energy Regulator’s (CER) Technical Leader, Indigenous Advisor and Cultural Protocol.

The Board Chairperson provided a land acknowledgement from the territories she was participating from in south Vancouver Island, also honouring the traditional territories of all participants.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

The CER Chief of Staff introduced and welcomed the new Executive Administrator to the IAC.

The Chief of Staff asked IAC members if they had any concerns with the minutes for the December 9–10, 2020 meeting. It was noted that all previously approved IAC meeting minutes were ready to be posted on the CER external website.

IAC members approved the minutes for the December 9–10, 2020 meeting.

Item 3: CER Progress Update – Terms of Reference

The CER Chief of Staff thanked IAC members who assisted in clarifying the terminology in the Terms of Reference (ToR) related to the Métis Nation and the role of members nominated by the National Indigenous Organizations. It was noted that the ToR was also amended to reflect a continual improvement approach.

The IAC Chairperson asked Committee members and the Board of Directors if they had any further comments or concerns before they could move to co-endorse the ToR, on the basis of an agreement by consensus.

Key topics and discussion points raised on the ToR included:

  • Committee members and Directors of the Board generally expressed an appreciation for the co-development process and the final version of the ToR
  • IAC members noted that this is a living document that would continue to evolve.
  • The ToR were co-endorsed by all IAC members and Directors.

The Chief of Staff explained that the ToR would be posted on the CER website, and shared with National Indigenous Organizations and other interested Indigenous Nations and communities, regulated companies and other government departments over the coming weeks.

Item 4: Welcome and Introduction of International Chief Wilton Littlechild

The CER Technical Leader, Indigenous Advisor and Cultural Protocol introduced International Chief Wilton Littlechild, a guest speaker on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration).

The IAC members, Directors, and senior CER leadership introduced themselves, after which the IAC Chairperson provided Chief Littlechild with a brief overview of the mandate of the IAC. It was noted, in particular, that the Board and the Committee had just co-endorsed the IAC ToR, which includes a foundational statement that the work and advice of the IAC will be grounded and guided by the UN Declaration.

Chief Littlechild acknowledged the traditional territories from where everyone was speaking, and provided some preliminary reflections on the UN Declaration, his own experiences, and the work of the IAC.

Item 5: CER Approach to Crown Consultation

The Executive Vice-President Regulatory gave opening comments.

The Vice-President Energy Adjudication provided an overview, and sought IAC advice on the CER’s proposed approach to Crown Consultation.

Key topics and discussion points raised on the presentation included:

  • The importance of language and clear communications: Language needs to refer to rights-bearing Nations and communities, to whom the duty to consult is owed.
    • The CER confirmed that the intent is to provide more meaningful opportunities for Indigenous peoples to be involved in the process from the earliest stages to ensure Indigenous perspectives and worldviews can be incorporated and addressed.
  • The roles and processes to be undertaken through the consultation process must be clearly defined: the CER should be clear on the role that various actors will play through the consultation process (CER as Crown, Commission as adjudicator, proponents); the role of the larger Government of Canada and Cabinet must also be clear, in terms of providing accommodation measures, and how Indigenous Nations and communities can elevate concerns and outstanding issues with the CER process or decisions.
  • Indigenous perspectives obtained through consultation need to be integrated from the earliest stages, and incorporated throughout, as part of the “main” hearing process.
    • Meaningful and effective consultation needs to begin during the development and design stage of the Project to ensure Indigenous perspectives and worldviews are incorporated and concerns addressed.
    • The consultation process cannot be a side process, running parallel to ‘main’ hearing process; it needs to reflect meaningful communication and cooperation with the decision makers, and involvement in decision-making, throughout. Consideration should be given to dispute resolution mechanisms.
  • Capacity gaps were identified as a significant barrier to meaningful and effective consultation, including insufficient time/expertise to participate effectively in project reviews; insufficient base capacity funding (permanent funding that goes beyond specific projects); consultation fatigue due to very large volumes of projects and inability to effectively address cumulative impacts; information gaps about consultations underway (e.g., communities not being aware of consultations that are occurring); language barriers; and physical access to the hearing process (e.g., internet access, technology).
Day 2: Friday, February 5, 2021

Item 6: An Initial Discussion – United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in the CER Context and Update on Federal Legislation

The Board Chairperson welcomed back Chief Littlechild.

The CER Executive Vice-President Law and General Counsel provided brief opening remarks, noting:

  • The CER has made a clear and unequivocal commitment to implement the UN Declaration.
  • It is important to consider the overall breadth and scope of the UN Declaration rather than focusing on specific articles.
  • The CER (and others) should be cautious about being overly legalistic in respect of the work to implement the UN Declaration; any direction from the Courts is likely to provide only minimum legal expectations.

Chief Littlechild then provided a framework for understanding the UN Declaration, through his reflections and experiences on the creation and history of the UN Declaration.

Key topics and discussion points raised during and following the presentation included:

  • Chief Littlechild noted several sets of principles that may be instructive to identify shared values, including: Principles respecting the Government of Canada’s relationship with Indigenous peoples; Principles from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action; Report of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples; and the UN Declaration.
  • Chief Littlechild provided important context to the Articles of the Declaration all of which are positive, solution-based, and represent minimum standards of human rights.
  • While various specific Articles were highlighted for their relevance to the work of the CER (e.g., Articles 3, 19, 23, 32, 46), the importance of reading the document as a whole, with an overarching focus on the right to self-determination, was emphasized.
  • Chief Littlechild noted that the principles reflected in the UN Declaration are Canadian ones (e.g., see Article 46(3)) and have been expressly incorporated into Bill C-15.
  • Articles 17, 40 and 47 provide a good conflict resolution mechanism. The UN Declaration has embedded positive solutions to resolve issues.
  • Participants provided some reflections on the discussion and the Declaration. Comments included the importance of a clear and unequivocal commitment to implementing the Declaration, and of not taking a legalistic approach. The importance of working together to advance this work was emphasized throughout the discussion.
  • Chief Littlechild encouraged the CER and the IAC to focus on finding solutions; what is good for Indigenous peoples is good for Canada.

Item 7: IAC Work Plan

  • Before entering into a discussion on the work plan, IAC members shared their thoughts about the importance of developing trusting relationships within the circle, and creating a safe and supportive environment. This may take time.
  • A forum could be established, where the IAC, Board and CER staff make time to learn and work through some cultural sensitivities.

The Chief of Staff discussed the broad approach for the IAC work plan, which is a living document. The proposed three-year plan provided was based on the advice of CER management and is a representation of potential items that could be brought to the IAC for advice.

Key topics and discussion points raised included:

  • Before entering into a discussion on the work plan, IAC members shared their thoughts about the importance of developing trusting relationships within the circle, and creating a safe and supportive environment. This may take time.
  • A forum could be established, where the IAC, Board and CER staff make time to learn and work through some cultural sensitivities.

The Chief of Staff discussed the broad approach for the IAC work plan, which is a living document. The proposed three-year plan provided was based on the advice of CER management and is a representation of potential items that could be brought to the IAC for advice.

Key topics and discussion points raised included:

  • How to most effectively set and understand work priorities, and then evaluate progress on an annual basis.
  • Specific tools and ideas discussed included:
    • One-on-one discussions between meetings
    • Facilitated IAC visioning session to help identify the big picture of where we are going and when/how we will get there
    • Survey questions to members between quarterly meetings
    • Meeting with IAC members only
    • Targeted working groups on specific topics between quarterly meetings
    • Creation of an advice tracker or register
    • Use of case studies
    • An annual self-evaluation process to measure IAC effectiveness
  • Each IAC meeting should include an update from the IAC Chair and Vice-Chair on their activities between quarterly meetings.
  • The CER will work to set up one-on-one discussions with individual members before the next meeting; CER staff will then incorporate comments received, and bring back a revised work plan for co-endorsement in the spring.

Item 8: Closing Remarks

IAC Chairperson and Chief of Staff provided brief closing remarks and comments on next steps.

Meeting Adjourned at 1:00pm MT on February 5, 2021

Recording Secretary: Katherine Murphy, Chief of Staff

Meeting Summary: December 9–10, 2020

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) met virtually on December 9–10, 2020. The meetings began with a prayer from Elder Vera Marie Crowchild from Tsuut’ina Nation, and a land acknowledgement from the CER Board of Directors (Board) Chairperson, from Vancouver Island.

Preliminary matters included approval of the minutes from the IAC meeting on October 14–15, 2020 and the joint Board-IAC meeting on October 26–27, 2020.

The first substantive item discussed was the draft IAC Terms of Reference. Members discussed topics including appropriate terminology and how to reflect the role of IAC Members directly nominated by National Indigenous Organizations.

The Chairperson of the Board of Directors provided members with an update on how the IAC’s comments had been incorporated into the CER Strategic Plan, 2021–22. This was followed by a discussion on the process the CER is developing for requesting and responding to IAC’s advice, and the development of a work plan for the IAC for fiscal year 2021–22.

The Board Chairperson provided an overview of the CER’s governance structure, focusing on the role of the IAC. The IAC then discussed the CER’s Data and Digital Innovation Strategic Priority. Members provided feedback and advice related to data sovereignty, in particular the cataloguing and access to Indigenous knowledge and confidential information.

The second day began with a presentation and general overview on the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMC) for Trans Mountain and Enbridge Line 3. Following the presentation, the IAMC Indigenous Co-Chairs shared lessons learned and recommendations for moving forward. The discussion included how the work and mandates of the IAMCs and IAC might intersect.

The CER provided an overview of key projections and findings from the Canada Energy Futures 2020 Report, and discussed the CER’s Energy Information Program. Members provided feedback and advice including on the need to more effectively engage and communicate information to Indigenous Nations and communities.

The Committee finished their meeting with a discussion of the IAC approach to cultural protocols while working in both a virtual and post-pandemic world.

Meeting Minutes December 9–10, 2020
Day 1: Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) Chairperson provided opening remarks. The meeting was opened with a prayer from Elder Vera Marie Crowchild from Tsuut’ina Nation, who was introduced by the CER’s Technical Specialist, Cultural Competence.

The Board Chairperson provided a land acknowledgement from the territories she was participating from on Vancouver Island, while also honouring the traditional territories of all participants.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

An overview of the Agenda was provided; no concerns were noted.

There was a brief discussion on the minutes for the October 14- 5 and October 26-27 meetings. Through that discussion the CER Chief of Staff confirmed that the IAC meeting minutes would be posted on the CER public website. IAC members generally discussed how to ensure an appropriate level of transparency surrounding IAC meetings, including how best to format and structure the meeting minutes.

IAC members approved the minutes for the October 14-15 and October 26-27 meetings.

Item 3: CER Progress Update

  • i. Mandate. Terms of Reference

    The CER Chief of Staff noted that the revised version of the draft Terms of Reference (ToR), provided in the meeting materials incorporates previous comments from the IAC and Board.

    Key topics and discussion points raised on the ToR included:

    • The use of appropriate terminology for the Indigenous peoples of Canada – in particular regarding the Métis Nation.
    • How the ToR should appropriately reflect the role of those IAC members who were recommended by the Assembly of First Nations, Métis National Council, and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami; while also allowing members to speak from their own personal expertise and experience.
    • The amendment process should clearly reflect a continual improvement approach.

Based on the discussions, the CER Chief of Staff will bring a revised draft of the ToR back to the joint meeting of the Board and IAC in February 2021.

  • ii. Board Update: Amendments to the CER 2021–22 Strategic Plan:

    The Board Chairperson noted that IAC advice had greatly improved the CER Strategic Plan and explained how the Board incorporated that advice into the final version.

    Key topics and discussion points raised on the Strategic Plan included:

    • Potential impacts of Bill C-15 An Act respecting the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples on the Strategic Plan. The CER Chief Executive Officer noted that the CER Act references the UN Declaration, and that work is already underway to implement the Declaration in CER operations.
    • How IAC advice could be provided on CER strategy, in the context of potentially evolving priorities and continual improvement and lessons learned. It was noted that the Strategic Plan is reviewed by the Board annually and is not static.

  • iii. Item on Guidance for IAC Advice

    The CER Chief of Staff provided a high level explanation of the document; namely, to inform the IAC of the CER’s intention to develop a process for requesting and responding to IAC advice, including how IAC advice will align with CER’s business planning cycle and the Board’s work plan.

    An item on a draft work plan for 2021–22 will be put together for the IAC and the Board to review in February 2021.

    Les membres du CCA en général ont reconnu que même si le document d’orientation est utile, une description plus détaillée de la façon dont les conseils du CCA sont transmis à la Régie au niveau opérationnel est nécessaire.

Item 4: CER’s Governance Structure – Presentation

The Board Chairperson provided an overview of the CER’s governance structure, highlighting the differences between the former National Energy Board and the new CER, with a focus on the integral role the IAC plays in the new governance structure.

Key topics and discussion points on the presentation included:

  • IAC members were interested in understanding how IAC strategic advice could influence the hearing process and ultimately regulated companies in the future.
  • The CER Chief of Staff explained that while neither the IAC nor the Board can provide advice to the Commission on a specific project or adjudication matter, other types of broad strategic and policy advice could potentially be shared with the Commission in an appropriate manner.
  • The CER needs to understand how Nations and communities receive information (including about the CER governance structure), and consider how to generate more awareness for Indigenous peoples, at the regional and local levels.

Item 5: Data and Digital Innovation Strategic Priority– Presentation

The Executive Vice-President Transparency and Strategic Engagement and the Vice President Data and Information Management and Chief Information Officer provided an overview of the CER’s Data and Digital Innovation Strategic Priority – including work being undertaken and planned.

Key topics and discussion points raised on the presentation included:

  • The importance of ensuring that any advice received from Elders or other traditional knowledge holders on a data management strategy, be inclusive of all of the Indigenous peoples of Canada (including First Nations, Inuit and the Métis Nation).
  • Concerns were raised about data sovereignty, in particular the protection of culturally sensitive and confidential information; the CER could consider application of the Ownership Control, Access and Possession Principles.
  • It was noted that many communities face significant infrastructural challenges related to data storage for archival information (including lack of internet access).
  • A future item could be brought to the IAC to examine data questions related to cataloguing and providing access to Indigenous knowledge and confidential information.
Day 2: Thursday, December 10, 2020

Item 6: Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees for Trans Mountain and Enbridge Line 3

The IAC Chairperson provided opening remarks on the opportunities for learning between the IAC and the two Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees (IAMCs).

The Executive Vice-President Transparency and Engagement and Vice President Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation provided an overview of the IAMCs for Trans Mountain and Enbridge Line 3.

Following the initial presentation, the IAMC Indigenous Co-Chairs for Trans Mountain and Enbridge Line 3 shared their perspectives and experiences, including on lessons learned and recommendations for moving forward.

Key topics and discussion points raised throughout the discussion included:

  • The Indigenous Co-Chairs both discussed the journey that led to the creation of the current IAMCs, and the progress and trust that had been built over a period of years.
  • The Indigenous Monitoring programs have provided opportunities for Indigenous Nations to build a relationship with government and the regulator and participate in monitoring in a way that was not previously available.
  • There is a desire to deepen the relationship and consider how Indigenous peoples can become more involved in a broader spectrum of activities, including oversight.
  • Looking ahead, the IAMCs are thinking about longer-term goals, including how to translate what has been learned from “boots on the ground” into a broader policy framework to institute continual and systemic change.
  • More generally, the IAMC table provides an opportunity for Indigenous Nations to share their perspectives outside of an adjudication process, which fosters a greater capacity/ understanding of issues.
  • Some of the broader issues to be considered include cumulative and lifelong impacts from projects. These impacts require longer-term monitoring and more broad-based understanding, post project construction.
  • IAMCs are a “breeding ground” of learning and innovation that can be applied to the work of the IAC to achieve their mandate.

The intersection of the IAC and the IAMCs was discussed, including potential ways the Committees can work together, how IAMC lessons learned can be brought to the awareness of the IAC for consideration in its advice, and how best to leverage the mandate of each Committee to drive change.

Item 7: Energy Futures 2020 – Presentation

The CER Chief Economist shared key projections and findings from the CER’s Canada Energy Futures 2020 Report, and discussed the CER’s Energy Information program more broadly.

Key topics and discussion points raised on the presentation included:

  • IAC members noted that it is important to engage Indigenous academics and researchers who have relevant expertise; particularly in relation to the ethical collection of data related to Indigenous peoples.
  • It is important for the CER to consider how to more effectively communicate information and relate to people in Indigenous Nations and communities, particularly Elders. Suggestions for better presentation of information included:
    • Connect directly with communities (build relationships, send letters, etc.)
    • Information, reports and studies can be made more relatable through a story telling format.
  • The development of regional “centres of excellence” could be one way to support regional/community capacity and address the capacity gap.

Item 8: IAC Approach to Cultural Protocols

The CER Technical Specialist, Cultural Competence led a discussion with IAC members on the IAC approach to cultural protocols. The CER will continue to invite an Elder for each virtual meeting.

  • Members suggested that post- pandemic, Elders from each region could be invited to participate in IAC meetings; through this, IAC members could better learn about the different cultures represented at the table.
  • Post-pandemic, IAC members could host an IAC meeting in their home region.
  • The CER Technical Specialist, Cultural Competence asked IAC members to follow up with her if they had any further questions or suggestions regarding cultural protocols

Item 9: Closing Roundtable

IAC Chairperson, Board Chairperson and Chief of Staff provided brief closing remarks and next steps, before the facilitator turned it over to a broader closing roundtable with all members.

Meeting Adjourned at 1:30pm MT on December 10, 2020

Meeting Summary: October 26–27, 2020

The Canada Energy Regulator’s (CER’s) Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) and Board of Directors (Board) met virtually in a joint meeting on October 26–27, 2020. The meeting began with a prayer from Elder Vera Marie Crowchild from Tsuut’ina Nation and a land acknowledgement from the Board Chairperson, which honoured the traditional territories of all participants.

Preliminary matters included an overview of the process undertaken to co-develop the Terms of Reference, and a summary of feedback received to date.

The IAC and Board considered the current draft Terms of Reference together with preliminary feedback received, through small group sessions and a larger plenary discussion. Through these conversations, members and Directors discussed potential foundational and guiding principles for the Terms of Reference, which could better reflect Indigenous worldviews throughout the document. Members and Directors also discussed the ways in which the IAC’s advice could be provided, and how it could best influence change within the CER and its regulated industry. The importance of relationships was also discussed, including how various relationships could be developed and maintained.

The IAC members met without the Board to discuss cultural protocol for IAC meetings, before going in camera, to select an interim Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson.

On the second day of the meetings, the members and Directors turned to a discussion on the Strategic Plan– again through the format of small group sessions and a larger plenary discussion. The conversations focused on the inclusiveness of the language used in the Strategic Plan and the ways in which Indigenous involvement and perspectives could be enhanced through the document. The need for an accountability mechanism was also noted. Specific feedback was provided on the Mission and Vision statements, as well as on the four Strategic Priorities.

In the final session, members received an onboarding presentation from Executive Vice-President Regulatory, on the CER’s regulatory lifecycle. Topics covered included: CER jurisdiction; CER regulatory framework; and project lifecycle (project application process; and post-approval oversight).

Meeting Minutes October 26–27, 2020
Day 1: Monday, October 26, 2020

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The meeting opened with a prayer from Elder Vera Marie Crowchild from Tsuut’ina Nation, after being introduced by the CER’s Technical Specialist, Cultural Competence.

The Board Chairperson provided a land acknowledgement from the territories she was participating from in the city of Vancouver, including those of the Musqueaum, Squamish Nation and Tsleil-Wauthuth Nation, while also honouring the traditional territories of all participants. The Board Chairperson provided some opening remarks.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

CER Chief of Staff, provided a brief overview of the process undertaken to date to draft the Terms of Reference (ToR). Written and verbal feedback received from the Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) and the Board of Directors on the draft ToR was summarized in two documents that were included with the meeting materials. Feedback on these documents was welcomed. Staff will undertake changes to the initial draft ToR, following this meeting.

An overview of the Agenda, and general process for the small group sessions was provided.

Some members noted that the response to some discussion questions would be preliminary, until members gained a greater understanding of the CER, its governance and processes.

Item 3: IAC Terms of Reference – Small Group Sessions

IAC members, Directors of the Board and CER senior leaders broke into small groups to discuss questions on the following four topics: Guiding Principles; Shared Goals; IAC influence within the CER; and short term advice.

Highlights from group discussions follow below.

  • A foundational statement could be included to indicate that the work and advice of the IAC will be grounded in and guided by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action, and the ten ‘Principles respecting the Government of Canada’s relationship with Indigenous peoples’, as a framework for advancing reconciliation.
  • Guiding principles should be value-based and culturally relevant; this will assist in reflecting Indigenous worldviews throughout the document.
  • The IAC should have a meaningful and measureable impact on the CER’s work, which in turn has an impact on the regulated industry. Members noted the importance of understanding how their advice can impact policies and influence change, noting that change management is critically important.
  • While IAC advice will be provided at a strategic or policy level with the Board, it is important that advice lead to change at the operational levels of the organization, with a clear line of sight between the advice and change on the ground. A ‘reconciliation baseline’ could be developed to assist in measuring progress; through semi-annual reviews or other feedback loops, the IAC could see how their advice has been applied.
  • IAC’s influence should broadly be on the entirety of the CER’s operations, rather than being narrowly focused in a particular area. The Committee’s advice should be informed by lessons learned by members and other bodies (e.g., the Indigenous Advisory Monitoring Committees) from past involvement with the regulator.

Item 4: IAC Terms of Reference – Plenary Discussion

IAC members, directors of the Board and CER senior leaders and staff came back together in plenary for a general discussion on the draft ToR.

Topics of discussion through the plenary discussion included:

  • The importance of building relationships between, and within, the IAC and Board (and CER) was noted; this will allow individuals to better understand one another, and continually teach and learn from one another. Some members noted that, in building relationships, the Committee will be better able to convey Indigenous worldviews, and assist the Board and CER to understand how Indigenous peoples see the world. These views can then be incorporated into CER processes.
  • Joint meetings between the Board and the IAC should be held at least twice a year, and the Chairs should have a regular relationship.
  • There was a general understanding that, while the IAC’s advice will be through the Board, its influence within the larger governance structure may evolve over time. Several members also noted the importance of having the IAC’s influence extend beyond the CER to – for example, the companies regulated by the CER (proponents), the broader Government of Canada, and other regulatory authorities (e.g., provincial regulators).

Item 5: IAC approach to cultural protocols for meetings

The CER’s Technical Specialist, Cultural Competence led the IAC members in a discussion on what cultural protocol should look like for Committee meetings.

  • The members generally discussed how the IAC could build a respectful relationship with a number of Elders, who could get to know the Committee’s work and start each meeting in a good way. Attending Elders should be honoured and invited to remain for the entire meeting. One suggestion that the members discussed, was the possibility of three Elders being selected as (1) First Nation, (1) Métis, and (1) Inuit.
  • Irrespective of the Elders' origin, these individuals should be chosen based on their ability to respectfully reach across Nations and communities.
  • The importance of finding ways to balance the Elders' wisdom with the larger objectives and time constraints of the Committee was noted.
  • Other members noted the benefits of having Elders to share wisdom and provide balance. The Elders could provide advice and could potentially be called upon to resolve disputes.
  • One member requested that, in the land acknowledgment, the full term “Homeland of the Métis Nation” be referenced to reflect that Métis peoples are all part of one Nation.
  • Other protocols from other areas in the country were shared: i.e. the lighting of a qulliq lamp, which is an opening norm for Inuit peoples.

The members noted that cultural protocol was important. This would help start the meeting off in a good way, to allow for open minds and a safe space. Any protocol is likely to evolve.

Item 6: Selection of IAC Interim Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson

IAC members went in camera to select an interim Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson.

Tribal Chief Tyrone McNeil was selected as interim Chairperson, and Kaella-Marie Earle was selected as interim Vice-Chairperson. The Interim Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson will hold their positions until May 31, 2021.

Day 2: Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Item 7: Welcome, Introductory remarks on the CER Strategic Plan, and feedback overview

The Board Chairperson opened the meeting with a land acknowledgment.

The Board Chairperson welcomed the new Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson of the IAC; the IAC Chairperson provided some remarks on the selection process.

The Board Chairperson then provided a brief summary of the CER 2021–22 Strategic Plan, together with an overview of feedback received to date from the IAC, on the Strategic Plan.

Item 8: CER Strategic Plan – Small Group Session

IAC members, Directors of the Board and CER senior leaders broke into small groups to discuss questions on the Strategic Plan; questions were focused on language used in the Strategic Plan, and on enhancing Indigenous involvement and perspectives.

Specific areas of discussion included:

  • The term “Canadians” may not appropriately include Indigenous peoples. Consider referring to the Indigenous peoples of Canada in addition to Canadians.
  • Members noted that the Vision statement should be aspirational; recommendations were made to reframe and broaden the focus.

Strategic Priorities

  • Consider referring to the UN Declaration expressly in the Reconciliation Strategic Priority
  • In the Competitiveness Strategic Priority, consider highlighting the local aspects of competitiveness – i.e., ensuring benefits of industry are shared more broadly.
  • In the Trust and Confidence Strategic Priority, there is no express reference to Indigenous peoples. Building the trust of Indigenous peoples requires a focus on building respectful relationships.

Item 9: CER Strategic Plan – Plenary Discussion

IAC members, Directors of the Board and CER senior leaders and staff then came back together in plenary for a general discussion on the CER’s Strategic Plan, including the four Strategic Priorities.

Highlights from the group discussion include:

  • Rather than referring to Indigenous peoples, ensure the language is inclusive by referring separately to First Nations, the Métis Nation and the Inuit.
  • There needs to be an accountability mechanism for implementing and measuring progress against the Strategic Plan and its Priorities.
  • In the Reconciliation Strategic Priority, add a reference to the CER’s role in supporting and guiding the regulated industry towards advancing reconciliation
  • In the Data and Digital Innovation Strategic Priority, consider referring to innovation in the area of consultation and inclusion of communities, including to allow for improved public access and participation. There are often barriers to Indigenous peoples accessing data & digital information

Item 10: The CER’s Regulatory Lifecycle

CER Executive Vice-President Regulatory, presented to the IAC members on the CER’s regulatory lifecycle. Topics covered included: CER jurisdiction; CER regulatory framework; and project lifecycle (project application process; and post-approval oversight).

Some of the key topics and discussion points raised following the presentation included:

  • The processes around the end of a pipeline’s life, including: the decision to abandon in-place or remove; what occurs if a company goes bankrupt at the end of a pipeline’s life.
  • Proponent standards through the application phase (project splitting; shared standards or cooperation with other jurisdictions).
  • How the CER has brought practices and learnings regarding Indigenous monitors into its policies and the larger organization.
  • How can standards be modified, to better account for Indigenous perspectives and worldviews; and to move to a more performance-based model?

Item 11: Closing Remarks

CER Chief of Staff provided brief closing remarks, including next steps.

Action Items

  • Board of Directors to consider advice on Strategic Plan for potential amendments (to be considered at meeting of the Board of Directors in November 2020). Summary of changes made will be shared with the IAC.
  • CER Staff to amend draft Terms of Reference based on input received and submit next draft to Committee, for consideration at December Committee meeting.
  • CER to arrange an Elder for next meeting (December 2020); and to bring forward a follow-up item at that time, on cultural protocol for IAC meetings going forward.

Meeting Adjourned at 1:00 pm MT on October 27, 2020

Meeting Summary: October 14–15, 2020

The Canada Energy Regulator Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) met virtually on October 14–15, 2020. The meeting began with a prayer from Elder Sykes Powderface from the Stoney Nakoda Nation, and a land acknowledgement from the CER Chief Executive Officer from the City of Calgary.

Preliminary matters included a recap of the inaugural September 2–3, 2020 IAC meeting, and updates on future meetings.

The first substantive item discussed was the draft IAC Terms of Reference, which is being co-developed with the CER Board of Directors. The members reviewed the initial draft of the document. Through this discussion, members noted important elements that should be included in this foundational document, such as a clear definition of ‘consensus’, a statement on how their advice would be situated within the CER’s broader governance model, and appropriate inclusive language to describe the Indigenous peoples of Canada. Members also sought additional information on their role and mandate; and provided feedback on their vision for how IAC meetings, relationships, and advice could be structured.

The Board Chairperson then provided members with an overview of the draft CER Strategic Plan, 2021–22, for information and preliminary advice. In the discussion following the Chairperson’s presentation, members reflected on ways in which the language could be improved; as well as how certain direct references from the Canadian Energy Regulatory Act could be incorporated.

Finally, the Executive Vice-President Transparency and Strategic Engagement provided an overview of the CER’s Reconciliation Strategic Priority (including work to date and suggested areas of focus going forward), for information and preliminary advice. Members provided feedback and guidance on specific initiatives being undertaken under this strategic priority including Indigenous procurement, the CER cultural competence program, and areas for improvement within regulatory processes.

Meeting Minutes October 14–15, 2020
Day 1: Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Welcome & Land Acknowledgement

The meeting began with a prayer from Elder Sykes Powderface from the Stoney Nakoda Nation who was introduced by the CER’s Technical Specialist, Cultural Competence.

CER Chief Executive Officer (CEO) provided a land acknowledgement from the city of Calgary as host of the Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) meeting.

Item 2: Preliminary Matters

CER Chief of Staff provided a recap of the inaugural September 2–3, 2020 IAC meeting, noting that the meeting minutes were included in the meeting material. No changes to the minutes were requested. The CER offered to receive comments via email.

A number of updates were provided on the September 2–3 meeting action items:

  • A draft Terms of Reference (ToR) was included in the meeting material.
  • The CER has set up GCCollab as a document sharing platform. IAC members have received sign-in information. Meeting material and previous onboarding material will be housed on this platform.
  • CER staff have canvassed availability for an additional meeting; set for December 9–10, 2020.

An overview of the Agenda was provided; no concerns were noted.

Item 3: IAC Terms of Reference – Introduction

CER Chief of Staff provided an overview of the process to draft the current version of the ToR, noting that it was developed by staff, based on discussions to date with the IAC as well as other precedents. It was noted that the intent of the current meeting is to discuss the key issues and highlight areas to focus discussion for the joint meeting with the Board on October 26–27, 2020.

Areas of preliminary discussion included:

  • Importance of finding ways for the IAC to contribute meaningfully – both at a strategic level and in terms of helping to inform specific regulatory approaches/processes.
  • The ToR should better reflect guiding and foundational principles, such as those set out in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) (e.g. Articles 25, 26, 27), Constitution, Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action; consideration should be given to direction from federal government Ministerial mandate letters, and inclusion of reference to self-determination, sustainability and stewardship.

Item 4: IAC Terms of Reference – Plenary Discussion

IAC members were provided with a draft ToR, which contained preliminary written comments received in advance from some IAC members.

Topics of discussion on the draft ToR included:

  • There is a desire to explore, understand and articulate the Committee’s role, mandate, potential sphere of influence and relationships, and how their advice will be operationalized. This includes within the CER (e.g., to the Commission, CEO and staff) and beyond the CER to the Minister and broader federal government as well as other similar advisory committees, such as the one in place for the Impact Assessment Agency.
  • Members need to share the lessons they have learned through past experiences with the CER and regulatory processes to inform areas of advice from the IAC.
  • The importance of language was noted (e.g., the use of the terms Indigenous Nations and communities would be inclusive of the Inuit perspective).

Item 5: IAC Terms of Reference – Small Group Workshop Session

IAC members and CER senior leaders broke into small groups focused on three key areas (Chairperson role and selection process; formulating advice and definition of consensus; and IAC membership, meetings, transparency and communication).

Highlights from group discussions follow below.

Chairperson role and selection process

  • The Committee will select an Interim Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson (e.g., for six months) at the October 26 meeting. Members will be asked by the Chief of Staff to self-identify their interest in these roles in advance of that meeting. The Interim Chair and Vice-Chair will be in place to help guide the finalization of the ToRs and to help the Committee find its footing. There was an acknowledgement of the need for a strong relationship between the Chairs of the Board and the IAC.

Formulating advice and definition of consensus

  • The significant diversity of the Committee was noted. While there was a sense that the Committee will strive for consensus and to speak with one voice, this diversity may result in multiple points of advice being given on some issues. A clear definition of ‘consensus’ is important.

IAC membership, meetings, transparency and communication

  • The Committee discussed the need to create the time and space within IAC and Board meetings to allow for the development of relationships, so members can get to know and learn from one another.
  • Committee members raised questions about what advice would be communicated publically, and when. The importance of documenting the advice given was noted.
Day 2: Thursday, October 15, 2020

Item 6: Overview of 2021–22 Draft CER Strategic Plan

The Board Chairperson provided an overview of the draft CER Strategic Plan, 2021–22, for information and preliminary advice. Specifically, the Chairperson discussed the process the Board followed to create the plan and the reasoning behind each component. The Chairperson noted that the Strategic Plan is evergreen.

Areas of discussion included:

  • A potential disconnect between the CER’s mission (which speaks of “respecting” rights), and the Reconciliation Strategic Priority was noted. The language in the latter is stronger, and more in line with the UN Declaration.
  • The Canadian Energy Regulator Act references renewed nation-to-nation, government-to-government and Inuit-Crown relationships, but this is not reflected within the Strategic Plan; consideration should be given to incorporating this expressly.
  • The IAC could offer advice on the CER’s risk-based approach to regulation and the risk model it uses to inform its compliance and oversight activities. Indigenous peoples view risk in a different manner, given their relationship with the land and can contribute this perspective, which the CER cannot.
  • Use of the word “partnership” may not be appropriate. “Partnership” can mean many different things, and not all Indigenous Nations and communities may want a partnership relationship. Consider using relationship-based language instead.

Item 7: Overview of CER’s Reconciliation Strategic Priority

The CER Executive Vice-President Transparency and Strategic Engagement provided an overview of the CER’s Reconciliation Strategic Priority (including work to date and suggested areas of focus going forward), for information and preliminary advice.

Areas of discussion included:

  • Committee members were generally positive on progress made by the CER towards advancing reconciliation over the past several years.
  • Committee members encouraged the CER to create specific and measurable targets for its objectives. For Indigenous procurement, clear and concrete targets should be set and consideration given to a minimum requirement for Indigenous content.
  • Members questioned how enhancing the organization’s cultural competency could be measured in the era of reconciliation, as well as information on the cultural competency program. Cross-cultural competency was suggested as an area for IAC advice.
  • Committee members pointed to personal experiences with CER processes in highlighting where changes could be made. A key area discussed was a lack of consistency and need for minimum and consistent standards for proponent engagement with Indigenous communities. Further, a desire to discuss how the CER holds regulated companies accountable (e.g., to commitments made in the regulatory process) was noted.
  • Members also highlighted the need to empower communities to better understand and work with the regulatory process through enhanced education, development of enhanced, interactive tools and simplification and streamlining of the process.

Item 8: Closing Roundtable

  • Due to time limitations, there was no closing roundtable.

Action Items

  • Chief of Staff will circulate a number of documents requested, including: By-laws of the Board of Directors (reference), Canadian Energy Regulator Act, and National Energy Board Modernization Report

Meeting Adjourned at 1:05pm MT on October 15, 2020

Meeting Summary: September 2–3, 2020

The inaugural meeting of the Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) was held virtually on September 2–3, 2020. The meeting began with Elder Sykes Powderface, from the Stoney Nakoda Nation from the Calgary area giving opening remarks and a land acknowledgement from the Tsuut’ina Nation’s Grey Eagle Hotel and Conference by video. This was followed by opening and welcome remarks from the Board of Directors and CER Chief Executive Officer (CEO). The Board Chairperson noted that the IAC completes the CER’s governance structure and that the Board wants to co-develop the Committee’s Terms of Reference with the IAC.

The Canada Energy Regulator (CER) provided IAC members with an overview of the governance of the organization, together with an overview of what the CER regulates, and where energy infrastructure is located. The Committee also discussed a potential process for an interim Chairperson and the Guiding Principles for the IAC.

In the second day of the meetings, the IAC met with the Board of Directors, CEO and Lead Commissioner. The Lead Commissioner provided a brief overview of the role of the CER’s Commission. The IAC and the Board also discussed a framework for co-development of the IAC Terms of Reference and potential collaboration moving forward.

Finally, both the Minister of Natural Resources, and the Deputy Minister of Natural Resources Canada provided welcoming remarks.

Meeting Minutes September 2–3, 2020
Day 1: Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Item 1: Opening Prayer, Land Acknowledgement, Introductions

  • The meeting began with CER Staff introducing Elder Sykes Powderface from the Stoney Nakoda Nation in the Calgary area. Prior to the meeting the Elder prayed and smudged off camera. The Elder then gave opening remarks, shared thoughts with the Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) members and gave a land acknowledgement from the Tsuut’ina Nation’s Grey Eagle Hotel & Conference Centre by video.
  • A round table of introductions took place from all the participants.

Item 2: Opening Remarks

Opening and welcome remarks were provided by the Board of Directors and CER Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

  • The Board Chairperson noted that the Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) completes the CER’s governance structure and that the Board wants to co-develop the Committee Terms of Reference (ToRs) with the IAC. Members were invited to take ownership of the Committee and to build a strong team. The Board Chairperson provided a personal commitment to work with the Committee in a respectful partnership and to find creative and meaningful ways to advance reconciliation through systemic change.
  • Members were thanked for their participation; it was noted that reconciliation is a shared responsibility, and that the Board wants to work collaboratively with the Committee on the ToRs, and shift how the CER works, addressing and fighting systemic racism, and changing how the Board makes decisions moving forward.
  • The CEO’s role was explained ensuring that IAC advice is operationalized throughout the CER. A collaborative approach was encouraged, with members bringing a diversity of experience and perspectives to the table.

The Elder provided some additional remarks before departing the meeting. He noted the importance of working with youth, helping them and providing guidance as they face racism.

Item 3: Agenda Review (For Discussion)

An overview of the Agenda was provided; no concerns were noted.

Item 4: Overview of Canada Energy Regulator (Onboarding)

An overview of the CER was provided.

  • The commitments in the preamble to the Canadian Energy Regulator Act (CER Act) were discussed, together with the governance of the CER, and how the IAC and Board might work together.
  • The CEO provided an overview of what the CER regulates, and where CER-regulated infrastructure is located.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The differences between the mandates of the IAC, and the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committees for the Trans Mountain Pipeline and Expansion Project and the Enbridge Line 3 Replacement Project, as well as lessons learned from the IAMCs.
  • Section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982, including a comment that we are moving from a push to recognize rights, towards implementing legal rights including title.
  • The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration), including how it might be incorporated into the ToR.
  • The importance of discussing and understanding in more depth what reconciliation means for the IAC’s work. Considering economic reconciliation and reconciliation through digital innovation and relationships, as examples.
  • How the CER works with provincial and territorial regulatory bodies and associated relationships in areas of the country where there is no CER-regulated infrastructure.
  • IAC governance, including whether members will speak with individual voices or as a shared voice while still bringing their unique perspectives and diversity of views, noting that there are different definition of consensus.
  • The importance of members getting to know each other, as well as Directors.
  • The format of IAC meetings including possible Indigenous members caucus/in camera session as part of the Committee’s meetings.
  • Potential areas for the IAC to provide advice including provisions in the CER Act related to Indigenous peoples.
  • Suggestion to update our language to use Indigenous Nations, as opposed to Indigenous peoples, and it was noted that further discussion is needed.

Item 5: Working Together: Establishing Ground Rules and Approach to Interim Chairperson (For Discussion and Consideration)

See the above discussion, which is also relevant to this Agenda Item. Limited time was allocated to this item

Topics of discussion included:

  • Timing to select a Chairperson to allow for members to get to know each other.
  • Considering the approach to the Chairperson for example having the Chairperson role circulate amongst members to begin.
  • How the Chairperson could be helpful to focus the discussion and that members who might be interested in being the Chairperson could indicate their interest at the next meeting. More information may be required on the time commitment for the Chairperson.

Item 6: Guiding Principles of the IAC (For Discussion)

See the above discussion, which is also relevant to this Agenda item. Limited time was allocated for this Item.

Discussion Included:

  • A need to hear from the Board on what it expects from the Committee.
  • It would be helpful for CER staff to prepare a draft ToR, covering the various practical aspects; then the Committee can review, discuss and provide guiding principles and values.
Day 2: Thursday, September 3, 2020

Item 7: Meet and Greet with Board of Directors, CEO and Lead Commissioners

Introductions and welcoming remarks were provided by the Board and Lead Commissioner, followed by Committee member introductions.

  • Directors thanked members for their service on the Committee, and indicated that they are looking forward to working with the Committee
  • The Lead Commissioner welcomed Committee members and also provided a brief overview of the role of the CER’s Commission. The Board Chairperson noted the importance of the Commission’s adjudicative independence and that the Board is prohibited from providing the Commission with advice or direction on any specific adjudicative matter.
  • In their introductions, Committee members discussed:
    • their backgrounds, areas of experience, interest and focus
    • the impact that the pandemic is having on communities and Elders in particular
    • the recent spill at the Sumas pump station and the role of the Indigenous Advisory Monitoring Committee in response

Item 8: Framework for Co-development

The IAC and the Board discussed approaches to and thoughts on co-development and collaboration moving forward.

Topics of discussion included:

  • A principle of ‘all voices are valued, and all voices are valid’
  • The importance of recording IAC advice, and regularly reporting back to the Committee on how the advice has been incorporated or implemented
  • Providing a defined space for ceremony, some suggestions to achieve this were: an Elder could open all meetings and/or perhaps the Committee could have a designated Elder, or meeting openings from any of the Nations represented on the Committee
  • Within the TOR to consider referring to alignment of voices, context and constitutionally recognized rights. Potential, too, to visually identify the communities where Committee members are from and reside today
  • The CER intends to onboard the IAC to the Reconciliation Focus Area in more detail this fall, including what has been done to date and forward-looking plans, and to seek the Committee’s advice on the CER’s Strategic Plan. It was noted that the IAC is new, is still being on-boarded and establishing its governance, making the provision of comprehensive advice difficult. The Strategic Plan is evergreen and advice may need to be provided over time.
  • Request to use a document-sharing site for meeting materials, as opposed to email.

Item 9: Welcome from Natural Resources Canada

Welcome remarks were provided by the Minister of Natural Resources and Deputy Minister of Natural Resources Canada.

  • The Minister noted that the IAC completes the governance structure of the CER. He thanked members for taking on this role and for bringing their unique insights to bear. The Minister further noted that Indigenous oversight of the energy sector is central to the CER Act and indicated the Government’s commitment to implementing the UN Declaration and its associated action plan. He noted the severe impact of the pandemic on Indigenous communities and the Indigenous economy.
  • The Deputy Minister invited the Committee to become part of the CER and to influence the organization from the inside. She noted that the establishment of the IAC is an exciting and landmark moment.

Topics of discussion included:

  • Response to and mitigation of climate change
  • Mutual capacity building and the immense potential for positive change that the IAC brings
  • Recognizing differences between Indigenous communities and Nations, wide diversity across the country, and the importance of using a distinctions-based approach
  • The next generation of Indigenous young people joining the energy sector
  • Recognition and implementation of Indigenous law
  • The importance of ongoing dialogue

Item 10: Closing Roundtable

Committee members, Directors, CEO and staff made closing remarks.

Topics of discussion included:

  • The importance that each time we meet, we feel better than the time before
  • The importance of working through difficult conversation and not letting disagreements deter our work
  • Managing expectations, keeping in mind the need for time, space, patience, and achieving meaningful engagement and advice.
  • Consider meeting more regularly than quarterly at first (e.g., monthly) and as the Committee is on-boarded
  • Noting there are differing degrees of experience with the CER on the Committee and a desire by some members to learn/read/have access to additional resources.

Action Items

  • CER staff to prepare a draft TOR, covering the various practical aspects; for Committee review, discussion and advice on guiding principles and values
  • CER staff to explore providing materials via a document sharing platform, rather than by email
  • CER staff to prepare Agendas for the next IAC meetings that incorporate general feedback and commitments from this inaugural meeting; and CER staff to canvas for more frequent meetings (e.g., monthly) over the first several months.

Meeting Adjourned at 1:30pm MT on September 3, 2020

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