Working with Other Agencies

A comprehensive environmental assessment requires collaboration between multiple First Nations, provincial, federal, and in some cases, American agencies. This collaboration continues in many cases for the life of the project.

EAO MOUs and Agreements

Below is a list of in-place agreements and Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) between the Environmental Assessment Office (EAO) and other agencies and between EAO and First Nations.

Agreements with the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA)

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency is the federal counterpart to British Columbia's Environmental Assessment Office. The EAO and CEAA maintain a strong relationship to ensure projects requiring both federal and provincial environmental assessments are conducted as efficiently as possible.

Memorandum of Understanding between Canada and British Columbia on Substitution of Environmental Assessments

When a project falls under both provincial and federal environmental assessment responsibility, there is an agreement (PDF, 6.7MB) in place which ensures that the two governments will carry out a single, cooperative environmental assessment while retaining their respective decision-making powers. This means Provincial and Federal ministers make independent decisions on whether to issue an Environmental Assessment Certificate from a single report. This is called Substitution. This one project, one assessment approach saves considerable time, money and resources for both governments, proponents, and those being consulted in the EA process, such as Indigenous Groups, stakeholders, and the public.

This is a different approach from equivalency, where the province may accept an Environmental Assessment undertaken by another jurisdiction.

Substitution Links

Substituted Projects

Fifteen projects have been approved by the Federal Minister for substituted environmental assessments to be conducted:


Project Name

Category Status

Aley Mine

Mining Pre-Application 

Arctos Anthracite

Mining Pre-Application

Aurora LNG Digby Island

Energy Withdrawn

Aurora LNG Grassy Point

Energy Withdrawn

Carbon Creek Coal Mine

Mining Withdrawn

Delta Grinding Facility

Industrial Pre-Application

Echo Hill Coal

Mining Withdrawn

Grassy Point LNG

Energy Withdrawn

Kemess Underground

Mining Certificate Issued

LNG Canada Export Terminal

Energy Certificate Issued

Ruddock Creek Mine

Mining Pre-Application

Sukunka Coal Mine

Mining Application Review


Energy Withdrawn

WesPac Tilbury Marine Jetty

Transportation Application Review

Woodfibre LNG

Energy Certificate Issued 

Agreement with the National Energy Board (NEB)

On June 21, 2010, the Environmental Assessment Office (EAO) and the National Energy Board (NEB) entered into an agreement (NEB-EAO Agreement (PDF, 1.06MB)) which states the EAO will accept the NEB's environmental assessment of a proposed project (that otherwise would have to be reviewed under the Environmental Assessment Act) as an equivalent assessment, and that the proposed project may proceed without a provincial environmental assessment certificate.

There is also an EAO Fact Sheet on this agreement: EAO/NEB Fact Sheet (PDF).

The following projects are subject to this Agreement. Information about these projects can be found on the National Energy Board's web site.

  1. Dawson Project 
    Westcoast Energy Inc.
  2. Enbridge Northern Gateway Project
    Northern Gateway Pipelines Limited Partnership
  3. Fort Nelson North Gas Processing Facility 
    Westcoast Energy Inc.
  4. Horn River Project 
    Nova Gas Transmission Ltd.
  5. Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project 
    Kinder Morgan Canada

Memorandum of Understanding between EAO and the Oil and Gas Commission (OGC) regarding Reviewable Projects

In October, 2013 the EAO and the Oil and Gas Commission signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the two agencies in fulfilling their respective roles by reducing duplication, improving timeliness and strengthening compliance and enforcement.

Agreements between B.C. and U.S. States with respect to environmental assessments