Case Studies

Building social acceptance for Enbridge


Enbridge applied to the National Energy Board (NEB) to reverse the flow of oil within a 639-kilometre section of Line 9 from Hamilton to Montreal. Enbridge faced a number of community relations challenges, including strong activist campaigns against the project, environmental and safety concerns from several municipalities along the route, high-profile coverage in the media and Indigenous opposition.

How NATIONAL helped

NATIONAL worked closely with Enbridge to provide stakeholder engagement, communications and issues management support for the high-profile Line 9B Reversal and Line 9 Capacity Expansion Project. NATIONAL developed and supported Enbridge with activating stakeholder engagement strategies, which included meetings with municipal officials along the right-of-way, community tours with Enbridge subject matter experts, building a network of supportive organizations and organizing 17 open houses in municipalities. Our stakeholder engagement was supplemented by corporate reputation work, media relations, digital engagement, public opinion research and community-based program recommendations. The NEB approved the Line 9B Reversal and Line 9 Capacity Expansion Project, with conditions, on March 6, 2014. After meeting the conditions, the Line 9B reversal was operational in December 2015.