Janet Holder, Enbridge pipeline project leader, announces retirement

Janet Holder will be stepping down as a key executive of Enbridge’s controversial Northern Gateway pipeline project, raising concerns about the company’s plan to build support for its project in British Columbia.

Executive vice-president Janet Holder will retire at the end of 2014, after working at Enbridge for two decades, and leading the pipeline project for the past three years.

Al Monaco, president and chief executive officer, thanked Ms. Holder for her years of service to Enbridge and her accomplishments as leader of the Northern Gateway team.

In a press release by Enbridge, Mr. Monaco. said:

“Enbridge is deeply grateful for Janet’s enormous contribution to the Company over a career of tireless service in leading the Northern Gateway team, Janet guided one of the most difficult projects in Canadian history through to regulatory approval, representing Enbridge and its partners with integrity. She built trust with communities by listening to their concerns and demonstrating Northern Gateway’s commitment to building a safe project that protects the environment.

Owing in large part to Janet’s efforts and leadership, Northern Gateway is a world-class project that is well positioned to bring jobs and opportunity to British Columbia and to Canada. Together with our partners in the Northern Gateway project, we offer our thanks and appreciation for a job well done.”

Ms. Holder said she is stepping down for personal and health reasons.

“I have been driven by a commitment to meet with, and listen to, British Columbians and Canadians,” said Ms. Holder. “Over the past three years, I’ve had the opportunity to travel to every region of the province. It’s been an extremely rewarding experience, but I have decided now is a good time to take a step back and focus on my family and my personal health. I look forward to spending more time with my husband at our family home in Prince George.”

The Northern Gateway Project is a proposed 1,177-km twin pipeline system and marine terminal. The project would transport 525,000 barrels per day (bpd) of oil for export and import 193,000 bpd of condensate.

John Carruthers, the new project lead, recently said that the 2018 startup date for the project was “quickly evaporating.”

He said his priority is to gain support from First Nations groups along the pipeline’s route.

“I’m not as fussed on what that date is, I’m more fussed on can we have the support we need to go ahead, so it’s positive for all people of Canada, including aboriginal people.

“That’s going to take time and it’s going to take the time it takes.”