January 30, 2018 (Edmonton) –British Columbia’s attempt to restrict the expansion of diluted bitumen, and by extension the construction of the Trans Mountain pipeline, is a shortsighted move that threatens to not only harm the Canadian economy, but will also have an adverse environmental impact, according to the Alberta Party Caucus.
“Alberta is an environmental leader and operates one of the most responsibly developed resource sectors in the world,” said Alberta Party Caucus leader Greg Clark. “The fact that our strong environmental track record isn’t enough to satisfy our provincial neighbours suggests that no amount of environmental action will secure consensus on the issue.”
He went on to stress that pipelines are the safest and least carbon intensive method of transporting bitumen.
“Our premier needs to be out there every day making the case for our energy industry, and making the case that building Trans Mountain will reduce global carbon emissions by displacing higher-carbon Venezuelan and Nigerian heavy crude with Alberta oil sands. Simply relying on the carbon tax to silence objections clearly hasn’t worked. The NDP needs to accept that and move on to other options.”
While the Alberta Party Caucus agrees that the proposed restriction on transporting diluted bitumen is unconstitutional, there is serious concern that delays caused by a constitutional challenge could result in the project no longer being viable.
MLA Karen McPherson believes that all levels of government are going to need to show leadership to resolve this issue.
“This is clearly an attempt by British Columbia to get around the federal approval for the Trans Mountain pipeline, and that is unacceptable. It will become harder to attract investment of all kinds to Canada if provinces throw a tantrum whenever they don’t like a decision under federal jurisdiction,” said McPherson.
The Alberta Party Caucus is united in calling on the governments of Alberta, British Columbia, and Canada to show some leadership and resolve this issue before it further harms our energy sector.
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