Pillar 3: Economic inclusion and partnerships
Enbridge strives to create, engage in, and stimulate positive and mutually beneficial financial impacts, opportunities and potential partnerships with Indigenous groups and businesses.
|Indigenous financial partnerships||Revise and formalize Indigenous financial partnership processes that encourage strategies to provide opportunities for Indigenous economic participation||Establish a formal Indigenous Economic Development Taskforce to formalize processes that will:
|Supplier capacity development||Advance opportunities for Indigenous businesses to participate in Enbridge’s supply chain||
|Indigenous procurement||Establish Indigenous spend targets||
Spotlight: Indigenous economic inclusion in gas transmission expansion projects in British Columbia
An expansion of B.C.’s gas transmission system created mutual opportunities and benefits for Indigenous businesses and Enbridge and shone a spotlight on the far-reaching impact and importance of Indigenous economic inclusion.
Enbridge is the owner and operator of British Columbia’s (B.C.) major gas transmission system, connecting the province’s natural gas exploration and production industry with millions of consumers and heating homes, businesses, hospitals and schools in B.C., Alberta, and the U.S. Pacific Northwest. Gas also fuels electric power generation and is a staple in many industrial and manufacturing processes.
In the fourth quarter of 2021, we completed two capital expansion projects—the T-South Reliability Expansion Project (TSRE) and the Spruce Ridge Expansion Program (Spruce Ridge). Enbridge conducted upgrades and reliability enhancements and expanded the capacity of the gas transmission system in B.C.
TSRE work included the installation of five new compressor units and associated equipment at five existing compressor stations, two compressor station cooler additions and three pipeline crossover projects. Twenty-four Indigenous groups participated and benefited economically, with Indigenous businesses securing and executing an aggregate of $54.7 million in contracts and subcontracts.
These projects were completed with significant Indigenous engagement, participation and collaboration. In fact, the spend with Indigenous contractors in B.C. nearly doubled between 2018 and 2021.
Spruce Ridge work involved the building of two new natural gas pipeline loops (the 13-km Aitken Creek Loop and the 25-km Chetwynd Loop), the addition of a new compressor unit at two compressor stations and some additional minor modifications at above-ground facilities. Nine Indigenous groups benefitted economically through subcontracting opportunities for an aggregate $66.6 million worth of contracts and subcontracts, including the award for construction of the Aitken Creek Loop to an Indigenous partner business.
As we have walked this path towards reconciliation through the years, there have been pivotal moments along the way that have increased the momentum of our journey and created fundamental shifts in the way we do business. The focus on and implementation of measures to increase Indigenous economic inclusion and engagement is one such example of Enbridge’s commitment on this journey.
The rollout of Enbridge’s Socio-Economic Requirements of Contractors (SERC) process in 2017 coincided with early engagement activities with Indigenous groups on TSRE and Spruce Ridge. The SERC guides our contractors on how we expect them to include Indigenous businesses in the execution of their work, as well as efforts to increase the use of Indigenous businesses as general contractors working directly for Enbridge. Each component of our focus on increased Indigenous economic engagement and inclusion was complemented by other mechanisms driving an increase in Indigenous economic inclusion and included targeted pre-qualification of Indigenous businesses; strategic direct award opportunities for Indigenous businesses to increase capacity and experience; and a focus on increasing capacity with Indigenous archaeology companies.
“Embracing relationships with Indigenous groups—giving them the opportunity to have a seat at the table, provide input on projects and to capitalize on opportunities is a big part of what reconciliation is (and to a further extent the implementation of UNDRIP in our daily lives),” said Chief Willie Sellars of Williams Lake First Nation.
“In addition, it’s important to keep in mind the cultural, ceremonial, and traditional components of our way of life and incorporating that understanding and respect into projects. The TSRE ground-breaking at Compressor Station 6A 150 Mile House included a ground blessing, prayers and songs and provided an opportunity to introduce those present to our way of life and our traditions. This is so important as reconciliation requires education for people to be able to understand, to heal and to move forward. We are pleased to be able to work with Enbridge on this important journey towards reconciliation.”