‘Training, technology and professionalism’: Indigenous reps join Alberta emergency response drill

This event in Alberta’s badlands yielded plenty of good.

In late July, Enbridge held an emergency response exercise on the Red Deer River near Jenner, AB, along our Express Pipeline right-of-way.

Taking part in the drill as observers were eight members of the Line 3 Replacement Program’s Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committee (IAMC).

“Seeing the equipment being deployed and meeting with personnel during the exercise has led to a greater understanding of the training, technology and professionalism that support Enbridge’s emergency management planning,” says IAMC co-chair Joe Daniels, from the George Gordon First Nation.

Building and maintaining sustainable relationships with Indigenous nations and groups—on projects such as the L3RP, and ultimately over the lifecycle of our assets—is essential to Enbridge’s continued success as a leading North American energy delivery company.

“We call this lifecycle engagement. It’s engaging with Indigenous communities on an ongoing basis, and moving toward a dialogue that’s more sustainable and meaningful,” says Enbridge community engagement official Peter Hansen.

“Instead of just engaging during pipeline construction activities, we proactively connect with indigenous communities during all phases of pipeline life,” he adds. “Inviting community members to observe an Enbridge emergency response exercise is one example.”

Enbridge focuses heavily on prevention work—like inspection, monitoring and maintenance—to keep our pipelines healthy and fit for service. However, we also have robust emergency preparedness and response systems—which we constantly test, review and improve—in the unlikely event of a pipeline incident.

On the Red Deer River, Enbridge’s maintenance and emergency response officials used response boats to deploy containment boom and skimmer systems, activities that will strengthen our spill control capabilities in the unlikely event of a pipeline incident.

“Our committee is responsible for assessing opportunities for the inclusion of Indigenous people and perspectives into Enbridge’s emergency management program for the Line 3 Replacement,” says Daniels.

“Enbridge has provided us with a lot of good information and hands-on learning which we’ll be sharing with impacted communities in the coming weeks.”

(TOP PHOTO: Enbridge pipeline maintenance coordinator Cody Kohlman takes members of the L3RP Indigenous Advisory Monitoring Committee (IAMC) through an emergency response trailer.)