From 2002 to 2015, Communica worked alongside the Northern Gateway public consultation team and provided strategic counsel on the public engagement and regulatory processes.
An important aspect of the Northern Gateway public engagement program is the Community Advisory Board (CABs) process. Established in 2009, the CABs provide an opportunity for participants to:
CABs have been designed to be inclusive of diverse community interests across Northern British Columbia and Northern Alberta. They include representatives from environment groups, Aboriginal groups, business associations, municipal governments, community organizations, and the public.
Communica was involved in the planning, implementation and ongoing management of the CABs from 2009 to 2014. Communica provided guidance by:
Working with CAB participants to develop a CAB Terms of Reference and Operational Guidelines
Coordinating the involvement of 175 CAB members across 5 different regional groups
Planning and executing 115 separate CAB meetings, including all logistics, registration, and co-facilitation
Incorporating stakeholder requests into meeting agendas
Planning and coordinating 4 multi-day all CAB member conferences
Developing a CAB communications plan
Feedback from the CAB process has made Northern Gateway a better project. Changes from CAB members participation include modifications to the route, river course crossings and pump station locations. The CABs continue to be a key engagement tool for the Northern Gateway team and will continue throughout the lifecycle of the project.
At the 2014 CAB Conference participants were asked to provide their overall impression of the event; all respondents identified the event as either great or exceptional. When asked to provide further feedback, comments included “as always informative, helpful and of exceptional quality,” and “a company listening, hearing and incorporating resolutions to stakeholder concerns!”
“I had the opportunity to see Communica in action through NCLGA, UBCM, and Northern Gateway’s Community Advisory Boards. They inform a variety of stakeholders; they know that doing it right the first time is essential. Their attention to detail and prompt response always ensured a great event. “
– Mayor Lori Ackerman, City of Fort St John