Conservatives and business join in on commenting on Trans Mountain project

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by Morinville News Staff

Following Premier Rachel Notley’s press conference Sunday on Kinder Morgan suspending non-essential spending on the Trans Mountain expansion, including Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer and the Canadian Federation of Independent Business.

Andrew Scheer said the situation was devastating news for Canada’s energy sector and Canadian workers.

“The blame for this development rests squarely on the shoulders of Justin Trudeau,” Scheer said. “He has failed to take a single concrete step to ensure this project is completed. All he has done is give us empty words with no action.”

The Conservative Leader said not only has the Prime Minister failed to champion important projects like Trans Mountain, he is actually making matters worse by imposing policies that harm the Canadian energy sector. Scheer pointed to the carbon tax and new regulations that he says penalize Canadian oil exports.

“The Canadian energy sector produces the most environmentally and socially responsible oil and gas in the world, and Canada’s Conservatives recognize that the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of Canadians depend on projects like the Trans Mountain Expansion,” Scheer said. “In contrast, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has failed to recognize the importance of the Canadian energy sector and publicly stated that he believes the Canadian oil sands need to be ‘phased out’.

Scheer went on to say that considering the Prime Minister’s track record of failure, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Kinder Morgan is now suspending work on the Trans Mountain Expansion project.

“Canadians deserve a government that will actually get the job done,” he said.

CFIB Calls For Immediate Action

CFIB called on the federal government to take immediate action to create the certainty that will allow the project to go forward.

“The provincial government in BC is disregarding the rule of law and putting politics above the national interest. It can’t be allowed to continue,” said Dan Kelly, President and CEO in a release Monday morning. “There is a lot at stake here beyond this one project, including Canada’s reputation as a reasonable place to do business.”

CFIB joined four other associations last month in a letter calling on the government of British Columbia to create the certainty for the project to proceed. “Our letter seemed to fall on deaf ears and Premier Horgan’s reaction to yesterday’s announcement suggests that hasn’t changed,” Kelly said.

Cenovus also looking for immediate action

Cenovus President and Chief Executive Officer Alex Pourbaix added to the voices saying it was time for the federal government to take immediate, clear and decisive action to ensure that construction of the Trans Mountain Expansion Project in British Columbia begins as soon as possible and that the pipeline does not suffer the same fate as the Energy East project.

“News today that Kinder Morgan is suspending all non-essential work on Trans Mountain and has set a deadline of May 31st to find a reasonable pathway forward should concern all Canadians,” Pourbaix said. “Trans Mountain was approved by the federal government following more than two years of exhaustive review and the attachment of nearly 200 environmental and legal conditions.

Pourbaix said the project is critical to Canada and the future of its oil and gas industry, which contributes billions of dollars to the national economy each year and is one of the country’s single largest job creators.

“If the rule of law is not upheld and this project is allowed to fail, it will have a chilling effect on investment not just in British Columbia, but across the entire country,” he said. “This is a vital project that is in the best interest of all Canadians. It should proceed without further delay.”

Kinder Morgan’s announcement came just a couple of days after Prime Minister Trudeau visited Fort McMurray and assured the pipeline would be built.

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