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Prime Minister, premiers meet over controversial Trans Mountain pipeline
16 April 2018, 10:35 | Anna Jefferson
Alberta introduces law to restrict flow of oil, gas amid pipeline dispute with BC
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"Except they've taken off the table use of the Constitutional Declaratory Power to bring legal certainty, they've taken off the power a...federal government court reference to the Supreme Court of Canada to steal the march on John Horgan's legal delay tactics in British Columbia and they've taken off the table the most obvious leverage the feds have, which is the power of the purse", he said.
The project - which would triple the pipeline's capacity to carry Alberta's oil sands to port in Vancouver - is fiercely opposed by British Columbia's government, ecologists and indigenous groups who warn of a possible environmental disaster in the event of a leak.
"I don't think it's any surprise to anyone that I don't think we would be in this situation if the British Columbia government hadn't continued to emphasize its opposition to the project", Trudeau said.
Trudeau broke off a foreign trip to hold an emergency meeting on Sunday with the premiers of two provinces locked in a standoff over the pipeline after the company set a May 31 deadline to resolve the impasse or it would walk away.
"We are going to get the pipeline built".
The legislation is expected to reassert, in addition to the Constitution, Ottawa's authority over pipelines.
Canada's government got just 24 hours notice that it would be thrust into a political and economic crisis by an ultimatum from a pipeline operator, government sources said, leaving Prime Minister Justin Trudeau scrambling for options in a dispute that could damage his re-election chances.
"The federal government can't buy off the opposition to this failing pipeline. the resistance continues to grow", said Mike Hudema of Greenpeace Canada.
"Two weeks ago signing a $4.3 billion infrastructure agreement with the Horgan NDP and now negotiating the $1.3 billion jobs training transfer to the same government in..." "If we're talking of things going awry, British Columbia knew this was federal jurisdiction", said the source. Finance Minister Bill Morneau will begin private talks with Kinder Morgan Canada Ltd., the project proponent, to determine what financial supports could be provided, Trudeau said.
Trudeau also said all of this is being done with a view to allowing Kinder Morgan to proceed on schedule.
"The federal government, along with the government of Alberta, has commenced discussions with Kinder Morgan to establish a financial relationship that will eliminate investor risk", Notley told reporters, but gave no details.
"It has gone through the hoops and, quite frankly, if co-operative federalism means we never, ever, ever make a decision, well I don't think that's a co-operative federalism that Canadians think is in their best interests", she said. Ottawa, which approved the project in 2016, insists it has jurisdiction. The cabinet decided the project, which will build a new pipeline that runs parallel to an existing one but can carry twice as much, was in the national interest.
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