This application was heard by the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board ("NSUARB"), and it followed a previous application decided in Alton Natural Gas Storage LP (Re), 2013 CanLII 56124 (NS UARB).
In the previous application, the applicant Alton Natural Gas Storage LP ("Alton Gas") obtained approval to construct an underground hydrocarbon storage facility pursuant to the Underground Hydrocarbons Storage Act. In this application, Alton Gas sought a renewal of the approval that the corporation had previously been granted. The original approval had expired on September 1, 2018.
As it considered Alton Gas's application for renewal, the NSUARB accepted submissions from other interested parties. A number of those parties opposed the renewal on environmental grounds, and Sipekne'katik First Nation argued that because the Band had not been consulted adequately, the renewal should not be granted.
The NSUARB held that it should not address Sipekne'katik First Nation's consultation concerns, as the issue was currently before the Nova Scotia Minister of Environment and would be resolved through a separate legal process.
Ultimately, the NSUARB granted Alton Gas's application for renewal.