Vancouver, British Columbia, August 21, 2015 – This afternoon, the National Energy Board announced that it is postponing the Kinder Morgan hearing until further notice, stating their own concern over “public confidence in the impartiality of tribunal decision makers.”
This is in reference to Steven Kelly, the board’s most recent appointee, a consultant who worked for Kinder Morgan on the Trans Mountain pipeline file, and filed over 400 pages of evidence, which the board admits is in direct conflict with other evidence filed.
Steven Kelly was appointed to the National Energy Board by the Harper government on July 31, on the eve of calling the national election. The oral summary arguments, which were set for Aug. 24 in Calgary and Burnaby in September, are now postponed and Kelly’s evidence will be stricken from the hearing records.
In response Sven Biggs, Campaign Organizer for ForestEthics Advocacy said “The Harper government’s last minute attempt to stack the National Energy Board with energy industry cronies has backfired. Today the NEB did the right thing and acknowledged that this appointment may – in their own words – ‘raise questions about the integrity of this hearing process.’”
“This is a scandal, like the senate scandal, that shows the Prime Minister’s office is manipulating independent government processes to forward their own political agenda. And just like the senate hearings, this process has now just blown up in their face, once again showing us that the Prime Minister puts his personal political interest ahead of the public interest” said Biggs.