Canada's Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver says communicating the benefits of energy development is the biggest challenge in gaining critics' favour.

Oliver said that facts and figures can only go so far. The federal government needs to communicate on a "emotive" level as well, according to the minister.

He said there's a lot of enthusiasm over plans to ship western crude eastward by pipeline.

Enbridge has filed a regulatory application to reverse the flow of its Line 9 pipeline between Montreal and southern Ontario.

Oliver says it's inevitable that some groups will take issue with Enbridge's proposal, but he says the Line 9 project will help reduce the costs of eastern refiners and even lower gasoline prices.