Calgary Herald by Shiela Pratt. After a bumpy ride this summer, Enbridge will face a tough grilling this week on its $6 billion Northern Gateway project as public hearings enter their final phase in which interveners can challenge the company’s evidence. Enbridge will square off with unions and First Nations while big oilsands players, including MEG Energy, Cenovus, Suncor, Nexen and Total appear in a joint witness panel. The Alberta government is also prepared to appear for the “questioning” phase of the federal Joint Review Panel hearings to examine the economic benefits of the proposed $6-billion pipeline project to carry Alberta bitumen to Kitimat on the coast of British Columbia for export to China. Critics like the Alberta Federation of Labour will argue Canada’s refining industry will shrink — with a loss of 8,000 jobs expected — if the pipeline project goes ahead and diverts bitumen feedstock to China. Opponents will also argue there is plenty of room in existing pipelines to handle growing bitumen exports. Enbridge, however, is “ very confident” going into the hearings as it will finally have a chance to respond to critics, says spokesperson Ivan Giesbrecht, noting the company will speak Tuesday.