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Enbridge’s Northern Gateway Project

Proposing oil tankers in some of the most pristine and treacherous waters in the world

To understand Raincoast’s objections to the Northern Gateway Project, we have compiled analysis and reviews that we produced either as evidence for the federal hearings (NEB/CEAA), published science papers or in popular reports. Links to these documents are at the bottom of the page.

A chronology of  the Northern Gateway project

A grizzly holds a salmon in its mouth as it stands in the water.

In 2003 Raincoast began its work to keep the coast of British Columbia oil-free. Raincoast’s efforts in the Northern Gateway review process included original scientific research, scientific review and a legal role (represented by our lawyers at Ecojustice) as intervenors in the federal hearings.  Upon project approval by the JRP and federal government, we joined with First Nations to launch legal challenges.  

What’s at Stake: The cost of oil on British Columbia’s priceless coast

What's at Stake Report Cover

In 2004, Raincoast began five years of at-sea surveys along the coast of British Columbia to understand what truly is at risk from the Northern Gateway Project. The resultant report, What’s At Stake: The Cost of Oil on British Columbia’s Priceless Coast, along with published scientific papers, detail this information and place it in a broader ecological context.

Embroiled: Salmon, tankers and the Enbridge Northern Gateway Proposal

Pink salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha) in the Great Bear RainforestOne of the most iconic species on the BC coast, salmon are at particular risk from oil expansion projects. The Raincoast report, Embroiled: Salmon, Tankers and the Enbridge Northern Gateway Proposal, explores the connections between the oil industry’s proposed activities and how those activities can adversely affect salmon.

Groundswell: A small film about making a big stand

Groundswell poster-webWhen Raincoast’s research vessel, Achiever, set sail with Patagonia and a world-famous team of surfers, we embarked on an adventure that allowed these high profile surfers to experience this amazing coast, its incredible wildlife and understand why tar sands oil tankers should never traverse these waters. Watch the trailer, download or purchase.

Reflections: Art for an Oil-Free Coast

An art from an oil-free coast artist paints in the great bear rainforest.A shared venture from Raincoast and Strongheart Productions, Reflections is a 22-minute documentary chronicling our Art for an Oil-Free Coast project. It shares the story of the artists’ expedition into a stunning and remote landscape, weaving together the artists’ work and their response to a people and a region at risk.

Reports on concerns for Enbridge’s Northern Gateway Project, including the deficiencies in Enbridge’s Environmental Assessment (ESA)

Marine mammals

Short history of BC whales and sea lion populations (PDF)

Status of whales and dolphins in QCB

Overview of threats to whales from NGP oil tankers (PDF)



Threats to salmon from NGP (PDF)

Cumulative threats to salmon (PDF)

RCF risk assessment undertaken on salmon (PDF)

Embroiled: Salmon, Tankers & Enbridge NGP (PDF)


Sea otters

NGP project threats to sea otters (PDF)

Cumulative threats to sea otters (PDF)


Marine Birds

Threats to marine birds from NGP (PDF)

RCF risk assessment undertaken on marine birds (PDF)


The Queen Charlotte Basin

Coastal/Terrestrial Animals (PDF)

Marine Life (PDF)


Brief overview of Enbridge’s flawed ESA

Overview of Enbridge’s ESA (PDF)


Brief overviews of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

Exxon Valdez Oil Spill 

Lessons from Alaska (PDF)


Oil tanker threats to the Queen Charlotte Basin

Overview of threats from NGP oil tankers (PDF)

Enbridge’s examination of tanker risk (PDF)



Conclusions about Northern Gateway (PDF)




Latest News

An oil tanker is hit by a wave in heavy seas.

Why Canada needs to codify Bill C-48, the Oil Tanker Moratorium Act

Misty MacDuffee travelled to Ottawa last week to give testimony to the House of Commons’ Standing Committee in support of Bill C-48…

Coastal bird populations and Big Oil

Times Colonist: Raincoast studies helped put nails in the coffin of the Northern Gateway pipeline. Excerpt for the book “At sea with the marine birds of the Raincoast by Dr. Caroline Fox…

Enbridge, Kinder Morgan, and hope for killer whales

We have something to celebrate. And so do you. In November, the federal government finally rejected the Northern Gateway proposal…

A humpback jumps into the air in the Pacific ocean.

Supreme Court of Canada asked to weigh-in on future of Environmental Assessment Law

Ecojustice lawyers, acting on behalf of Raincoast, have filed an application to appeal aspects of the Northern Gateway decision to the Supreme Court of Canada…

Pipeline, above ground, spanning from close-up to the horizon.

Court ruling shuts door on Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipeline

The court confirmed that the federal government’s consultations with First Nations were insufficient. Ecojustice lawyer Barry Robinson, representing Raincoast and Livings Oceans, said his clients are thrilled that the court has quashed Enbridge’s permits.

Raincoast and partners go to court to quash Enbridge pipeline approval

Environmental groups are in court today making the case for why the federal government’s approval of Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipeline should be revoked…