Published: Fri, May 18, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

British Columbia is just defending its interests on pipeline: BC premier

British Columbia is just defending its interests on pipeline: BC premier

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley must have been saving up all week for her latest diatribe today, but at least she waited for Finance Minister Bill Morneau to finish his press conference, laying out Ottawa's plan to ensure the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is completed.

The NDP's cornerstone Bill 12 will grant the energy minister final say over crude oil, natural gas and refined fuels shipped out of Alberta.

"I don't think there's any magic phrase I can say that will have critics and skeptics put down their criticism and say, 'You know what?"

"The indemnification would allow Kinder Morgan to finish what they started, what they received federal and B.C. approval to do", he said.

"If Kinder Morgan is not interested in building the project - we think plenty of investors would be interested in taking on this project, especially knowing that the federal government believes it is in the best interest of Canadians and is willing to indemnity to make sure it gets built".

The Trans Mountain line expansion would add to the existing 1953-originated pipeline, twinning the system to increase product transportation and reach increased global markets. The company said it would consult with stakeholders before May 31 in hopes of protecting shareholders and gaining clarity on its ability to construct the pipeline through B.C. I want to see shovels in the ground.

Eby said he also wanted to make it clear that B.C. will pursue damages if Alberta uses its bill to punish British Columbians.

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"If they refuse to do that we'll take them to court and we'll challenge the constitutionality of their bill", Eby told reporters.

The $7.4-billion Trans Mountain project would triple the flow of heavy oil products from Alberta to Burnaby, B.C. Texas-based Kinder Morgan has warned it will pull the plug by month's end if hurdles to expanding the pipeline through British Columbia remain.

Horgan said blaming B.C. for the pipeline impasse is focusing on the wrong target. Trudeau said only there'd be "alternatives", while Morneau didn't specially respond when asked if he's had talks with rival pipeline companies. "From day one, Horgan has known that he can not block this project and chose to play politics instead of working for the best interests of British Columbians". $332 million, Royal Bank of Canada $113 million, Power Corporation of Canada $105 million, the province of Quebec $81 million, the Ontario Teachers Pension Fund $4.8 million, and the B.C. government employees' pension fund $14 million, which includes Horgan's pension.

Jason Kenny, once known as "Mr Fix-it" as a cabinet minister in the previous federal Conservative government is now leader of the provincial United Conservative Party (UCP) in Alberta, which currently sits in the opposition.

Kinder Morgan Canada, a unit of Kinder Morgan, halted most spending on the expansion in April and set a May 31 deadline to decide if it would scrap the project entirely, citing legal and jurisdictional issues.

"We're glad that Kinder Morgan and their stockholders have begun to understand the financial risk of not respecting Indigenous Title and Rights", he said.

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