On Wednesday, Aug. 28, the National Energy Board (NEB) became the Canada Energy Regulator (CER). For further information please visit our Implementing the Canadian Energy Regulator Act information page

Chapter 11: Compliance and Landowner Complaints

For the entire life of a project, landowners are welcome to contact the NEB if there are concerns or issues to address or even to make a request for information about a pipeline on your property. Landowners may choose to contact the NEB by telephone, e-mail, fax or mail. Full contact information of the NEB can be found on the back cover.

How does the NEB monitor the construction and operation of a pipeline?

The NEB monitors the construction and operation of the pipeline in several ways. One way is through field inspections carried out by NEB Inspection Officers and specialized staff who monitor the company’s activities to make sure it is meeting the conditions that the NEB has set. Inspections may happen on a set schedule or occur as a result of a complaint or issue. Environmental inspections may be done to ensure the proper reclamation techniques have been applied and the land has been restored. Sometimes this occurs in response to a formal request from the landowner. The NEB’s Landowner Complaint Process can be used once a project is in the construction or operation phase.

What happens if an inspector finds a problem?

If an Inspection Officer finds that a condition is not being followed or there is a situation that needs to be addressed for safety or environmental reasons, he or she may try to resolve the problem in one of three ways:

  • address the issue by talking with the company;
  • request an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance (AVC) - an AVC is a written commitment from the company to the Inspection Officer that the company will correct the non-compliance problem within
    a given period of time; or
  • issue an order to the company or any person(s) involved with the pipeline either to stop work or take specific actions.

What other activities are possible after the pipeline is constructed?

Any time after a pipeline is built, the company may decide to make additions or modifications to the pipeline. For example, the company may want to build an additional pipeline in the same right-of-way, add more pumps or compressors along the route, or put an additional right-of-way beside the first. The company may also want to sell the pipeline to another company. All of these activities require NEB approval. The company may also be required to negotiate with the landowners for any additional land rights it may need for the project. For more information on Other Projects, please see Chapter 3.

What is the Landowner Complaint Process?

A formal complaint from a landowner must be received by the NEB in writing and the company will be contacted for follow-up. Generally, complaints are dealt with on a case-by-case basis. The NEB facilitates discussion on ways to resolve the issue or may order an inspection if it is related to compliance with a condition of approval. If parties fail to come to an agreement, the NEB can be asked to intervene by way of a written request to resolve the problem. It is possible that further processes may occur to settle landowner complaint disputes.

What types of Landowner Complaints does the NEB usually deal with?

The NEB receives a variety of complaints with respect to reclamation, crop damage, water drainage, noise, damage caused by construction, concerns with communication by company representatives or other organizations, and so on. Outstanding compensation issues will be referred to the NRCan process (see Chapter 7).

Do you have templates I can follow?

Yes, templates can be found on the NEB's website by going to "Participation & Lands" and then "Templates for Public Participation".


Landowner Complaint Process
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Landowner Complaint Process

Complaint may be resolved at any stage in the process

  • NEB receives Complaint Informally
  • NEB determines if Complaint is under its jurisdiction
  • Complaint formally submitted (in writing)
  • Tools to Settle Dispute
    • Informal - ADR - site visit
    • Formal - condition compliance - inspections
  • Board Determination - formal Decision or other recommendation
  • Complaint Resolved

How do I contact the NEB to make a Landowner Complaint?

To initiate a Landowner Complaint or for Land Matters questions, please contact the Board:

Mailing address:

Canada Energy Regulator
Suite 210, 517 Tenth Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta  T2R 0A8

Telephone: 403-292-4800
Telphone - Toll Free: 1-800-899-1265
Fax: 403 292-5503
Fax - Toll Free: 1-877-288-8803
E-mail: landsinfo@cer-rec.gc.ca

A lot of information can be found on the CER’s website at:

Click on Participation & Lands

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