The Interface between Federal and Provincial Jurisdiction over Pipelines: Recent Developments, Current Issues and a Suggested Mechanism for Reducing Turbulence in the Buffer Zone


  • Rowland J. Harrison



Energy Law, Petroleum Law


In two recent decisions of the Federal Court of Appeal, the Court overruled the National Energy Board's determination of the extent of the Board's constitutional jurisdiction with respect to interprovincial pipelines and certain associated facilities. A necessary conclusion to be drawn from these, and earlier, cases is that, in the absence of a final judicial ruling on specific facilities, the jurisdictional status of many facilities will always be in some doubt. This article examines the possibility of employing mechanisms that are well-established within the framework of the Constitution Act, 1867 to mitigate the consequences of this uncertainty. This is the first time that the viability of using such mechanisms in this context has been analyzed in detail.