Community Investment

Communities throughout our operations put their trust in Pembina and permit us to operate in their backyards. Through our community investment program, we honour this relationship and give back to the communities where we live, work and play.
 

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Focus Areas

Pembina supports non-profit and charitable organizations that are based in, or support, the communities where we operate. Within this framework, we focus our investments on organizations that improve access to education, protect or preserve the environment, promote safety, create community space and encourage recreation and a healthy lifestyle.

Pembina believes that supporting education not only enhances opportunities for people to improve their quality of life but also provides our company with a potential source of trained and educated workers for our own workforce. We support educational programs in our operating areas that range from small, unique donations to partnering on larger community-based education and training programs.

Pembina believes we have a responsibility to do the right things to protect the health and safety of people and the environment. Safety and environment are top priorities for Pembina, and in addition to taking steps to minimize our impact on the environment and working towards a goal of zero incidents, we invest in programs that raise safety or environmental awareness in our operating communities.

Pembina believes in providing opportunities for members of the communities in which we operate to come together. We support initiatives aimed at creating or renovating community spaces that are accessible for all.

Pembina understands that communities thrive when they have access to exceptional health care, nutrition, fitness and recreational programs. Pembina supports programs and activities that promote healthy living, active lifestyles, wellness and the enhancement of medical services.

Requests considered ineligible for community investment funding from Pembina include:

 

  • For-profit organizations 
  • Individuals
  • Political organizations and candidates
  • Religious or sectarian organizations
  • Third-party fundraisers or professional solicitors
  • Advocacy or special interest groups
  • Private schools
  • Service clubs and fraternal organizations
  • Private clubs funded through membership fees
  • Research 
  • Feasibility studies
  • Organizations or programs funded by the United Way (Pembina gives directly through an annual funding campaign)
  • Organizations that discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion or lifestyle
  • Debt-reduction campaigns
  • Travel, accommodation, meal expenses, field trips and tours
  • Retroactive requests
  • Specific health conditions, diseases or illnesses
  • Events and activities that take place outside of our operating communities
How to apply for funding
  1. Review Pembina's funding priorities and see if your organization is eligible for funding
  2. Apply through our online application form (linked above)
  3. If you have questions, contact community_investment@pembina.com
2016 Community Investment Summary

Employee Giving (PATH)

Follow the Yellow Brick PATH - Pembina encourages our employees to give back to the communities where they live, work and play through the PATH program (Pembina’s Actions That Help). The PATH program allows employees to engage more closely not only with the communities they live in, but also to create a culture whereby employees feel supported by the company in their philanthropic efforts. Just think of Pembina’s Community Investment team as the Wizard, of a sort. Only instead of ruby slippers, we are here to hand out donation matches, volunteer support and team building assistance through PATH.

In addition, Pembina works closely with those organizations for which we provide funding to through our Corporate Community Investment Program to create opportunities for employee volunteerism throughout the year.

Pembina's gift matching branch of the PATH program encourages employee contributions to registered charities. Pembina will match any donation made by an employee to an eligible registered charity to no limit.
Pembina offers a $500 contribution per employee per year to those organizations for which employees volunteer at least 50 hours of time. The volunteer matching program is designed to encourage employee volunteerism in the community, whether it's volunteering at a local food bank or coaching the kids' community soccer team. 
 
Pembina encourages employees to come together as teams while supporting those causes that are important to them. Pembina offers corporate volunteer opportunities throughout the year so that staff can give back to their communities. In addition, each employee, as part of a Pembina team, may access $50 per year per employee to go towards registration fees in a given sport-related fundraising activity (think Ride to Conquer Cancer).
 
To recognize the employees who help to make Pembina such a great community partner, we offer the Emerald Award for community involvement. This award is distributed quarterly to an employee who goes above and beyond in giving back to their community, with the recipient offered a $500 grant on behalf of Pembina to donate to the charity of their choice.


Each year, Pembina conducts a Company-wide staff United Way Campaign. We are proud to say that employee donations are 100%  matched by the Company – to no limit – and each of our offices holds their own United Way Campaign (if a location does not have a United Way, they are able to fundraise for the community organization of their choice).

Pembina has been a proud supporter of the United Way for over 25 years. Through our long campaign history, we have invested over $9 million in the Calgary community, and are consistently ranked in the top ten for both participation and dollars raised.

For our efforts, Pembina has received several awards, including the President's Award, two Awards of Excellence (United Way’s most prestigious award) and a Because Award from the United Way of Calgary & Area, a Quantum Leap Award from the United Way of Grande Prairie, and the Richard White Day of Caring Award from the Sarnia-Lambton United Way in Ontario. 
 

"Pembina understands the importance of a healthy and vibrant community - and we feel the United Way plays an important role. We encourage our employees, directors and retirees to give back to the communities where we live, work and play, and we are proud to support an organization so integral to the community."
- Mick Dilger, President & CEO
Our Impact
Since the inception of Pembina's employee giving program, we have contributed over $430,000 to local communities through our employees' charitable initiatives, including over $185,000 in 2016.



 


Signature Program


At Pembina, nothing is more important than making sure that the communities where we live, work and play continue to be happy and healthy. In Canada, statistics show that 1 out of 5 children are at risk of starting their school day on an empty stomach, while in Aboriginal communities the ratio nearly doubles to one in two. Good eating habits and overall health and wellness go hand in hand – poor nutrition in children increases their risk of developing diseases, and can impact their overall school performance.

​We're committed to making sure that all kids have the ability to reach their full potential, and we know that a good day starts with a good breakfast. This is why are launching a signature community investment program, Fuel 4 Thought, in partnership with Breakfast Club of Canada, a national organization with over 4,500 programs across Canada. Through this program we will invest $1 million over the next 3 years to support nutritious breakfast programs in high-needs schools within many of our operating areas.  

 

In 2016, we supported programs in the following communities:

Bon Accord, AB

Grande Prairie, AB

Sarnia, ON

Calgary, AB

Hinton, AB

Sherwood Park, AB

Drayton Valley, AB

Mayerthorpe, AB

Slave Lake, AB

Fort McMurray, AB

Morinville, AB

Whitecourt, AB


 

What kind of impact will this program have?  
 

120,000

Number of breakfasts served during the 2016/2017 school year

 
720

Average number of students who will access the program every school day

 

8,000 

Number of volunteer hours from parents, community members and Pembina employees


Along with food donations, Pembina will also provide equipment and nutritional support to ensure these programs are sustainable for the communities they serve. The school breakfast programs will be inclusive (meaning all children can participate, regardless of social status) and create a social environment for students, parents and employees to volunteer and engage with the program.
Learn more about
the Breakfast Club
 

Pembina support brings Engine 23 stories to life

Just in time for its first anniversary, The New Adventures of Engine 23 celebrated with the announcement of a two-year commitment by Pembina Pipeline Corporation to its most popular storytime offering. 
 
Read with Engine 23, supported by Pembina, is a children’s literacy program that brings together Library experts and real-life firefighters from the Calgary Fire Department to read to children and share fire safety lessons. This free family program is held at Central Library on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at 11:00 am.
“Giving back to the community in a meaningful way is important to Pembina.  We believe access to education is fundamental to a child’s success, and as safety is our top priority, the Read with Engine 23 program was a perfect fit,” said Jaret Sprott, Pembina’s Vice President of Gas Services. “We’re excited to support the Library in continuing to offer great programs like this to the Calgary community.”
This unique downtown exhibit and its free programming set the stage for the powerful development of play within the life of a child. By enforcing the key early literacy practices of talk, sing, read, write, and play, Engine 23 programs position children on the course for future success. 

The New Adventures of Engine 23 has seen thousands of children and their families stream into Central Library every day since its opening last April,” says Bill Ptacek, CEO, Calgary Public Library. 
“Introducing children to reading—and real-life heroes—at a young age is critical to their development and we’re thrilled to have Pembina’s support for this unique storytime.”

The New Adventures of Engine 23 is a partnership between Calgary Public Library and the Calgary Fire Department, and was developed to help children create and act out their own stories, play and pretend together, and learn life-saving fire safety tips.

Archive

Check out other stories on Pembina's community commitments.
October, 2016 - Pembina Pipeline Corporation's 2016 Calgary United Way campaign reached new heights this year, raising a grand total of $2.89 million (including Pembina’s corporate match), making it the most successful United Way campaign in the Company's history.

"Pembina has been a strong supporter of United Way for nearly 30 years and their generosity and commitment continue to be inspiring," said Lucy Miller, President and CEO of United Way of Calgary and Area. "Leadership from companies like Pembina help us to invest in essential community programs and services that create a better future for all Calgarians."

Pembina is committed to supporting the communities it serves by working with organizations like United Way. Each year, Pembina staff and retirees come together to raise money for United Way through employee pledges, workplace fundraising events, and company volunteer opportunities. Pembina then matches all funds raised during the campaign. In addition this being a record-setting year for financial contributions, 91%of Pembina staff participated in the campaign and volunteered over 232 hours.

Each of Pembina's field offices also run fundraising campaigns that have surpassed their contribution and volunteering goals, and so far in 2016 Pembina staff have raised a total of $3.2 million across the Company's operations in Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario for local United Ways and charitable organizations. Pembina’s long-standing tradition of giving back to the United Way began nearly 30 years ago, and since then we have contributed over $12.7 million to United Ways across our operating areas in Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario.
 
"It's easy to give when times are good, but it demonstrates real care and commitment to give when times are tough," said Mick Dilger, Pembina's President and CEO and the Co-Chair of the 2016 Calgary United Way Campaign. "The fact that so many Pembina employees, contractors, retirees and members of the Board of Directors are dedicated to keeping the community strong and giving back to those less fortunate really speaks volumes about the people who work at this company. Their generosity comes at a critical time for our city and will have a tremendous impact."
 
Pembina is proud to be one of Calgary's largest supporters of the United Way.

August, 2016 - In partnership with Alberta Food Banks, Pembina has launched its Fresh Food Fund, a grant program which provides funds for rural food banks to purchase fresh, healthy, and local food items.

Pembina has a long history of supporting critical social services like food banks to make sure that members of our communities stay healthy, and over the past couple of years have supported individual food banks across the province, including Swan Hills, Airdrie, Drayton Valley, Redwater, Calgary and Medicine Hat. However, in Alberta food bank usage rates have increased by 23% since March of 2015. Last year alone, 66 food banks across Alberta served a record-setting 68,000 people, and more than 44% of people using the food bank were families with children. Those numbers are anticipated to increase in 2016 with the continued downscaling in the oil & gas industry, as well as the expiry of EI benefits for those who were impacted last year. 

Over the last few months it’s been clear that there is a need for increased support of local food banks, and that this is a growing problem that needs to be addressed on a larger scale. Pembina has recently been approached for donations several times by food banks in our local operating areas, as well as by Field Managers and employees who are keen to support their community during these hard economic times. 

Through conversations with both the Alberta Food Bank Association, as well as many food banks within our operating areas, we have also learned that although food banks are still receiving some non-perishable food items, there is a significant need for fresh, healthy food. Many people accessing the food bank are under significant stress and food that is highly processed and high in sodium and sugar, can lead to further negative health impacts. 

This is why we've partnered with the Alberta Food Bank Association to create Pembina’s Fresh Food Fund, which will help ensure that communities across the province have access to nutritious food, including fresh dairy, protein, fruits and vegetables.

Stephanie Rigby, Executive Director of Alberta Food Banks, explains that, "although many food banks are still receiving donations of non-perishable items, there is a significant need for fresh, healthy food."

Tasha Cadotte and Clint Walker from Pembina were on hand at the Alberta Food Banks’ Annual General Meeting to announce Pembina’s grant program, and to present the Hinton Food Bank with the first Fresh Food grant. 
October, 2016 – At Pembina, safety is our top priority. Our goal is zero incidents by choice, and we aim to create a culture of safety both within our business and in the communities where we live, work and play. Many of our operating communities rely on volunteers to provide essential emergency services, and Pembina is committed to ensuring they have the resources they need to respond effectively through our annual Fire Safety Project grants.

"It's a natural fit for Pembina to support volunteer fire departments since safety and emergency response preparedness are top priorities for us," says Martin Clough, Senior Manager, Safety, Security & ERP for Pembina Pipeline Corporation. 

He adds, "Having both the right equipment and necessary training makes all the difference for fire departments in our local communities."

Through this project, Pembina has committed to supporting volunteer fire departments in our communities, funding everything from equipment to training and outreach. October 2016 marked the sixth year of the grant program, and we celebrated by donating 27 grants to volunteer fire departments across our operating areas. 

Pembina is proud to continue our support of volunteer fire departments and help protect the well-being of the communities where we operate.
 
August, 2016 - Hockey is a way of life in Canada, and now thanks to Pembina’s new partnership with Hockey Alberta, we’re excited to be able to help minor hockey players stay safe while playing the best game you can name.

Recently, Hockey Alberta implemented new guidelines for minor hockey associations with players six years old and under. These guidelines encourage all minor hockey associations with younger players to purchase rink dividers, ensuring that kids are able to learn to play safely by skating on a smaller surface.

However, this also means that minor hockey associations across the province are in need of rink dividers for their arenas in order to hold games and practices for younger players. At $3,000-$6,000 each, these rink dividers can be expensive for smaller associations, especially in rural areas.

This is where Pembina comes in. We are always looking to support great initiatives like this that support safety and promote healthy activities for kids. Therefore, in order to alleviate some of the financial burden for associations using the Initiation Program in the 2016-2017 season, we partnered with Hockey Alberta to establish a grant program to fund the purchase of foam rink divider boards.

"We all know that when we sign our kids up for hockey, we’re doing it to provide them with an opportunity to be a part of a team, learn some new skills, and get some exercise, all in a safe and fun environment. We also know that many families and communities have been hit hard by the economic downturn and that having to purchase temporary boards or foam rink dividers in addition to annual fees would be an additional financial burden. This is a real opportunity for Pembina to get involved, as it hits so many of our core values,” said Don Carter, Pembina’s Athabasca District Manager.

The applications for the grant program closed in July, and we expected to receive around 30; however, we found that in the end we had a total of 57 applications for Pembina’s grant program from minor hockey associations across the province. Therefore, though the grant program was initially only intended to run in 2016, on account of the overwhelming response and demand we are happy to announce that Pembina will continue funding the hockey grant program into 2017, thus allowing us to support all of the minor hockey associations who applied, impacting almost 30,000 kids across the province. 
May, 2016 - Pembina Pipeline Corporation’s Swan Hills office has been hard at work building a new playground for the Swan Hills School, an event that was over two years in the making. 
 
The old playground was not only over 30 years old and outdated, but the structure also posed a safety risk to the kids. As a result, in collaboration with the Swan Hills Grizzly Cubs for the Future Society, our Swan Hills employees started raising funds in 2015 to give their local school a much-needed playground upgrade.
 
Through employee donations made during Pembina’s United Way Campaign, contributions from Pembina’s Community Investment funds, and fundraising events held throughout the year, the office was able to donate a total of $81,218 in support of a brand new and safe playground. Due to their amazing fundraising efforts the new playground, called “Pembina Park,” was able to be installed in the community right away in May of 2016, instead of in 2018 as originally planned.
 
Pembina staff also donated over 500 volunteer hours to help build the playground. To thank everyone who helped make the playground a reality, the completion of Pembina Park was celebrated with a volunteer barbecue on May 6.
February, 2016 - Pembina's Fort St. John office hit the ice on the weekend of February 12 for the annual Crystal Cup Pond Hockey Challenge. The Crystal Cup brings together 45 adult teams from Fort St. John and the surrounding area for some friendly competition on 10 man-made rinks over a three-day period. Pembina has sponsored a rink at the event for the last few years, and for the first year, put a team together to participate.

Brice Shepard, Tradesman at Pembina's Fort St. John office, was the team captain and commented, “The event is important to the community because it brings everyone together from all over the map; families are welcome, there are lots of kids’ activities, and the event includes pancake breakfasts and live entertainment. Everyone had a really positive attitude and we look forward to playing again next year!”
November, 2015 - Pembina Pipeline Corporation has proudly raised a record $2.7 million – the largest contribution in Pembina’s history – which will go to United Ways across its operating areas. United Way of Calgary and Area will receive a donation of $2,348,082 (including Pembina’s 100 percent match), the result of the Company’s annual staff fundraising campaign. Further, Pembina has donated approximately $370,000 to United Ways in its operating areas through the Company's field office campaigns. 

Calgary Campaign
Employees, contractors, board members and retirees from Pembina’s Calgary office came together to raise funds through pledges and activities, including a mini-sticks hockey tournament, fun money casino night, silent auction and an Executive game show, with 91 percent of employees participating in the campaign. All funds raised were then fully matched by Pembina.
Fun and games aside, Pembina staff also volunteered their time and energy to give back to the Calgary community through ˈDays of Caringˈ activities. Pembina volunteers served a meal at the Calgary Drop-In and Rehab Centre and spent an afternoon reading to students at Guy Weadick Elementary School through the Calgary Reads program.

"We recognize that this has been a difficult year across the energy industry and in the Calgary community, and we are proud to see so many people at Pembina stepping up to lend a hand to their neighbours in this time of need," explains Mick Dilger, Pembina's President and Chief Executive Officer and the 2015 Co-Chair of the United Way of Calgary’s Major Giving Cabinet. "We’ve been a strong supporter of the United Way for over 30 years, an organization we feel is integral to the Calgary community and is able to direct funds towards the areas of greatest need within our city."

"Pembina Pipeline’s 91 percent employee engagement rate for their United Way campaign is an example of what it looks like when the best happens," said Lucy Miller, President and Chief Executive Officer of United Way of Calgary and Area. "Their generous donation of more than $2.3 million will directly improve the lives of Calgarians. More kids will graduate from high school, more people will achieve financial stability and more communities will thrive. The city is grateful for their support."

Field Office Campaigns
Pembina also supports the United Way in communities across its operations, through its British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario offices. In communities where there is no local United Way, the funds raised through the employee fundraising campaign are donated to a local non-profit organization chosen by the field office. In 2015, employees across our field operations committed to supporting their communities in diverse and creative ways, holding everything from chili cook-offs, golf tournaments and holiday parties to events like sumo wrestling in Grande Prairie, a human foosball tournament in Sarnia/Corunna and auctioning off a fire truck in Redwater, all coupled with volunteer activities where employees lent their time and efforts as well as their dollars.
October, 2015 - Pembina has always been committed to giving back to the communities where we operate, and on October 23, 2015, Pembina’s Sherwood Park office was recognized for that dedication. Our Sherwood Park office was the proud recipient of the Community Service & Involvement Award at the 2015 Sherwood Park Chamber of Commerce Business Awards. 

These Business Awards recognize companies in the Sherwood Park area who have demonstrated a commitment to excellence in their operations, and Pembina is proud to be among their number. The recipient of the Community Service & Involvement award had to show their dedication to making a positive impact in their community, and the Sherwood Park office has certainly stepped up over the past year. Their commitment to the community ranged from company donations to the Sally Stewart Park, Centennial Wetlands irrigation line, and Stollery Children’s Hospital (to name just a few), to employee giving through Pembina’s Actions That Help (PATH program which matches employee donations and volunteer hours) and the United Way campaign. 

Jeff Lorenz, President of the Chamber of Commerce and Roxanne Carr, Mayor of Strathcona County presented the award to Don Carter, Manager of Pembina’s Athabasca District at Sherwood Park.

Congratulations again to the Sherwood Park office on their outstanding work in the community!
September, 2015 - Pembina has always put families first, which is why we are proud to partner with the Ronald McDonald House (RMH) of Northern Alberta, which offers a home-away-from-home for families with critically ill or injured children seeking medical treatment. Pembina has pledged $60,000 to the new Connect Home Program, which provides support systems and resources to assist families from the Peace Region with their transition back home after being in the hospital with their child.

"The Connect Home Program serves a real need in the community,” says Darren Olsen, Manager of Pembina’s Cutbank Complex, which is located near Grande Prairie, “and Pembina employees are excited to volunteer and help families make the transition back home as positive an experience as possible.

Upon their return home, families will receive a Connect backpack filled with resources for both parents and kids. This is intended to help with the transition to life at home, while reinforcing the bonds they have formed at RMH.

Families can also access the Connect Home’s Meals that Mend program. Through this program, families remain connected to their support system while participating in community-hosted meals. Past and present RMH families can come together for a home-cooked meal that also includes activities for children.

Pembina’s commitment to the Ronald McDonald House will help to ensure that our Peace Region families continue to thrive by having access to a strong support network through the Connect Home Program. 
September, 2015 - Building community and volunteering runs deep in Pembina Pipeline Corporation’s Swan Hills team. On September 17th, Pembina’s Swan Hills office hosted a community barbecue, with over 200 guests joining the staff for a fun afternoon celebrating the local community.
 
“We really enjoy hosting this event,” said John Pattyson, Swan Hills Supervisor. “The barbecue is a great way for us to give back to the community and thank the people of Swan Hills for all their support.”
 
During the event, the Pembina employees presented a $75,000 donation to the Swan Hills Grizzly Cubs. The funds will support the construction of a new playground at the Swan Hills School. A portion of the funds for the playground came through employee donations. These funds are then fully matched by the Company as part of Pembina’s company-wide United Way Campaign. Pembina employees have also committed to volunteering their time to build the playground in the spring of 2016.
September 2014 – Building safe, strong, healthy communities is a core value at Pembina, even when the “building” becomes literal. And in 2014, Pembina’s Valleyview office donated their time, and their muscles, to build a brand-new playground for their local preschool.

In the fall of 2014, a parent council at the preschool raised concerns about the previous play structure; it was small, in need of repairs, and didn’t include the latest in playground amenities – particularly for the ages of children who used the structure. Through the help of community donations, including $4,000 from Pembina, the preschool was able to purchase a state-of-the-art playground featuring a jungle climber and slide, a village hut, a four-seat teeter and a hippo play structure.

Now the problem was turning the raw materials into a fun and safe place for kids to play. Here, Pembina staff spent two days assembling the structure, laying sheeting and filling in the protective gravel. The Company also provided lunch for all the volunteers, making it a great teambuilding for employees and an even bigger success for the kids. “I have a great team here and we are proud to support our local community,” explained Rob Smith, Manager, Valleyview District.

August 2014 - Pembina understands that communities thrive when they have access to exceptional health care. That’s why we are proud to add four new hospitals to the roster of facilities we currently fund through our community investment program in 2014.

The Fort St John Hospital, Redwater Health Centre, Drayton Valley Hospital and the Stollery Children’s Hospital will receive funding for medical equipment from Pembina totaling $210,000 over the next 5 years. Pembina has also committed $95,000 to the Township of St. Clair in support of the Rapids Family Health Centre.

Pembina currently supports the Alberta Children’s Hospital, Bluewater Health Foundation, Fox Creek Hospital, Swan Hills Hospital Foundation and the Queen Elizabeth II Hospital with annual donations that range from $5,000 to $25,000. 

June 2014 -  Pembina employees helped plant over 5,000 trees at the Ann and Sandy Cross Conservation Area (the Cross) – a 4,800-acre conservation area of rolling foothills southwest of Calgary, AB.

Volunteers got their hands dirty (literally) and spent the day planting native trees and shrubs (including Balsam poplar, spruce, pine and willow) to help prevent soil erosion and flooding, provide a natural habitat for wildlife, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

This day supported a larger undertaking of the Cross, who have teamed up with the Carbon Farmers to plant over one million trees on ASSCA conservation land within the next five years.

Pembina is proud to support organizations like the Ann & Sandy Cross Conservation Area, who take positive steps towards the preservation and protection of our environment. Pembina also supports education outreach programs for school kids at the Cross.

The Ann & Sandy Cross Conservation Area is dedicated to the protection of wildlife habitat through the conservation of natural education. To learn more, visit www.crossconvervation.org

February 2014 – A team of Pembina volunteers spent their afternoon answering calls and taking donations for the 11th annual Country 105 Caring for Kids Radiothon, benefiting the Alberta Children’s Hospital.

Volunteers had nothing but great things to say about their experience at the radiothon.

“I love the children’s hospital. It’s probably the fact that I am a mother of young kids and the few times I’ve had to go in there (for minor things) we’ve received such great care from all the nurses and doctors,” shares Tara.

“The highlight was meeting some of the kids who were/are patients and listening to their experiences with the ACH. They were amazing. They each had their hardships, but they were so resilient and so positive!”

This year’s Radiothon raised an incredible $1.9 million and will assist the 82,000 kids and their families who use the hospital every year.

Pembina is proud to be a longtime supporter of the Alberta Children’s Hospital. 

June, 2013 - Pembina is extremely proud of a group of employees who not only came together to raise over $18,000 for the MS Society – but did so in the pouring rain!

What started out as some friendly competition between two of our business units turned in to something much larger with over 40 Calgary employees, plus their families, participating in the MS Run & Walk. Pembina employees won both the 5k and 10k race, with a few others finishing in the top 10.

Pembina’s Grande Prairie office also joined this cause and had five employees participate in the local MS Run and Walk this spring, raising just under $3,000. 

2012-2014 Grizzly Bear Study - Pembina is committed to supporting a two-year grizzly bear research project, conducted by the Foothills Research Institute in an area south of Grande Prairie. In a continuous effort to be environmentally-conscious stewards of the land on which we operate, Pembina has supported research related to the impact of oil and gas operations on wildlife habitat. In 2012, the company announced support for a two-year research project related to grizzly bears in the area south of Grande Prairie. The goal of this project, conducted by the Foothills Research Institute, was to gain an understanding of pipeline infrastructure on grizzly bears.


In the first year of study, researchers aimed to answer questions about:

  • if, how, and when grizzly bears use pipeline right-of-ways (RoWs);
  • if/how the use of pipeline RoWs by grizzly bears is related to access to plant food resources or prey; and,
  • if grizzly bear use of RoWs is significant and how grizzly bear use of pipeline RoWs may differ from their use of roads and undeveloped terrain.
The initial results showed that bears used pipeline RoWs for transportation purposes, in many cases, selecting them over alternative routes (such as seismic lines, roads and dense forest.) Gordon Stenhouse, Research Scientist and Program Leader, theorized that this may be because RoW conditions make for a fairly clear walking path with good soil. Common bear foods such as dandelion, clover and ants were found more frequently along RoWs and surrounding areas than in other parts of the region. The study also confirmed that comparatively, RoWs were far less risky for bears than roads because of reduced human activity. In general, the first phase study indicated the possibility of a positive relationship between grizzly bears and pipeline infrastructure.

During year two, the results of which were published this March, project researchers sought to:

  1. Determine levels of human use along pipeline RoWs and probabilities of bear-human interactions; and,
  2. Based on the results of our research and analysis, propose mitigation strategies for pipeline RoWs in core grizzly bear conservation zones in Alberta.

The study found that bears preferred to use RoWs in areas with newer pipelines (mean age ~7 years) and that they preferred RoWs were there were fewer crossings of pipelines and roads. Essentially, bears were using the infrastructure created by pipelines to their benefit, but still preferred to avoid direct contact with humans. However, the pipelines used in the study were still currently in use by humans, indicating that human/bear encounters could still occur on RoWs.

In these areas, the greatest risk to bears was the inability to see them at road crossings. Other risks included human recreational use driving bears away from valuable habitat near pipelines and the risk of bears being killed be humans in these areas. While initial fears reflected that pipeline RoWs may become areas of high quality habitat with an equally high risk of mortality for bears, none of the collared bears were killed by humans over the course of the study.

Overall, Gordon Stenhouse and his team of researchers were able to establish that there was a positive relationship between the grizzly bear population in Alberta and the existence of oil and gas pipelines. “What we create with pipelines RoWs has been good for Grizzly bears relative to habitat use and selection. This finding is important in discounting some of the myths about pipelines ruining grizzly bear habitat,” explains Stenhouse. While it is still crucial to exercise caution in relations between humans and bears and there is still more work to be done, the future looks promising for a harmonious existence between industry and nature in our province.