Chris focuses on government relations and regulation in the energy and resource sectors throughout western Canada. He has advised utilities, independent power producers, marketers, mine and energy project developers, crown corporations, tribunals and governments.
Chris appears frequently before regulatory boards in energy and environmental matters in British Columbia, Alberta and the Northwest Territories. He represents clients in judicial proceedings arising in the regulatory context or, more generally, from the relationship between business and government heard by all levels of court in British Columbia and Alberta and in the federal court system including the Supreme Court of Canada. He has particular expertise in connection with all aspects of public utility law.
Recent tribunal experience includes assisting proponents for LNG export projects to obtain required authorizations from the National Energy Board and local regulators on both the west and east coasts of Canada.
His recent experience also includes a number of regulatory and judicial proceedings involving the extent of the Crown's obligation to consult First Nations. He was counsel to BC Hydro at all levels including the Supreme Court of Canada in RioTinto Alcan and BC Hydro v. Carrier Sekani Tribal Council, 2010 SCC 43.
Recent engagements include representing:
• An electric utility and its marketing subsidiary in connection with the allocation of capacity to import and export electricity to and from Alberta
• A crude oil shipper in connection with the allocation of service capacity amongst competing users of petroleum pipeline.
• The developer of a special purpose 260 km road to the “Ring of Fire” in Northern Ontario
• The owner of a natural gas storage facility in connection with provincial and regulatory policy related to natural gas storage in B.C.
• An oil refinery in connection with various applications before the National Energy Board and the British Columbia Utilities Commission relating to crude oil and refined product shipment
• A territorial government in connection with an application to construct the Mackenzie Gas Project and in constitutional litigation arising therefrom
• A territorial government in connection with an application to transfer regulatory jurisdiction over TransCanada Pipeline’s Alberta System from Alberta Utilities Commission to National Energy Board jurisdiction
• A territorial government in connection with the restructuring of its regulatory model for its electric industry
• A Canadian energy marketer in connection with regulatory and civil class action proceedings arising out of the California Energy Crisis in 2000 and 2001
• A large electric utility seeking to upgrade its high voltage transmission system to serve significant new demand from the natural gas industry
• A large electric utility before the British Columbia Utilities Commission the BC Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Canada in connection with a contract for the purchase of $950 million worth of energy from an independent generator
• A large electric utility in connection with all regulatory and First Nation consultation aspects of acquiring an interest in a major hydro and electric generating facility
• A Canadian energy marketer in connection with all regulatory aspects of short and long term export sales
• The Canadian entity under an international treaty in connection with a series of negotiations and transactions relating to energy entitlements created under the Columbia River Treaty
• Numerous applicants for a licence from the National Energy Board to export LNG from the west and east coasts of Canada