Energy East: new report assesses pipeline’s climate impactProposed west-to-east pipeline would have major environmental ramifications

Feb. 6, 2014

OTTAWA — The proposed Energy East pipeline would enable a significant increase in Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions, says a new report from the Pembina Institute.

Climate Implications of the Proposed Energy East Pipeline is the first public estimate of the west-to-east pipeline’s upstream climate impact. It shows that producing the crude needed to fill Energy East could generate up to 32 million tonnes of additional greenhouse gas emissions each year — an even greater impact than the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

TransCanada is expected to file its regulatory application for Energy East with the National Energy Board in the first half of this year. In anticipation of that application, the report provides two recommendations: that the NEB should include the pipeline’s full upstream impacts in the scope of its review, and that the federal government should end its delays and adopt strong emissions regulations for the oil and gas sector.

Quick facts

  • The crude production needed to fill the Energy East pipeline would generate an additional 30 to 32 million tonnes of carbon emissions each year — the equivalent of adding more than seven million cars to Canada’s roads.
  • By comparison, filling the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would increase emissions by 22 million tonnes, according to a previous analysis from the Pembina Institute.
  • Filling the Energy East pipeline would help spur 650,000 to 750,000 barrels per day of additional production from the oilsands.
  • Despite numerous requests from interveners and members of the public, the NEB’s last major pipeline review did not consider the environmental impacts of producing the crude that would flow in the pipeline.


“The oilsands are already Canada’s fastest-growing source of carbon pollution and the Energy East pipeline would help to accelerate production. Any regulatory review should include not only the impact of the pipeline itself, but also the impact of producing the crude that would flow through it.”
— Clare Demerse, Federal Policy Director, Pembina Institute

“The oilsands industry plans to triple production by 2030 and building new pipelines is necessary to realize those ambitions. We need to look at the full scope of impacts when evaluating pipelines.”
— Erin Flanagan, Analyst, Pembina Institute


Download a copy of Climate Implications of the Proposed Energy East Pipeline.


Clare Demerse (English / français)
Federal Policy Director
613-562-3447 x222

Erin Flanagan (English / français)

Bernard Rudny (English / français)
Communications Lead


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