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Pembina unveils 3 years of emissions figures, social efforts in 1st ESG report

Pembina Pipeline Corp. released its first sustainability report detailing the Calgary, Alberta-based midstream company's environmental, social and governance efforts in a three-year period from 2015 to 2017.

Pembina has participated in regulated emission reporting programs, including Canada's Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reporting Program, the Alberta Carbon Competitiveness Incentive Regulation, Ontario cap and trade reporting regulations and the National Pollutant Release Inventory reporting program. Despite growing emissions across its operations between 2015 and 2017, the company said it met or exceeded greenhouse gas regulations based on the reporting programs.

Pembina's total direct greenhouse gas emissions amounted to over 1 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent in 2017, rising 49% over 2015 levels. Indirect greenhouse gas emissions also increased over 2015 levels, rising by 21% to 995,565 tonnes of CO2 equivalent in 2017. The increases were attributed to "significant growth" in operations, which included asset acquisitions, pipeline construction and facility expansions. The company boosted gas processing capacity by 24% and NGL processing capacity by 116% between 2015 and 2017.

To help curb further emission increases, Pembina is developing a cogeneration power plant for its Redwater NGL processing complex near Edmonton, Alberta, which is the company's largest complex. The power plant is expected to begin operations in 2019, boosting efficiency in heat and electricity production and cutting overall emissions for the company.

To ensure infrastructure integrity, Pembina invested C$310 million on inspections and repairs, among other activities, over the three years. In 2017, Pembina inspected 603 pressure vessels, 15 storage tanks, six storage tubes and 69 pipeline facilities, spending C$8 million. Pembina reported zero spills in 2017, compared to 11 in 2016 and four in 2015.

Pembina's Aboriginal environmental trainee program, launched in 2009, to incorporate perspectives from Aboriginal and tribal communities into project development and day-to-day operations, as well as boost awareness on the environmental requirements and processes involved in projects. From 2015 to 2017, 86 trainees from 15 communities participated in nine of the company's projects. In 2018, Pembina expanded the program to include participation in biophysical surveys for project permitting.

With the implementation of Pembina's board diversity policy, the company added a female director to its board, resulting in three women members, or 25% of the board. Pembina's workforce also grew by 15% in 2017, consisting of 287 new permanent employees. Of the new hires, 87 were women, 13 were Aboriginal peoples and 24 were members of "visible minorities" as defined by the Canadian government.

Pembina plans to issue full-length reports on sustainability efforts on a biennial basis and provide updates on its website in between reports.