The new pipeline was approved awhile back, subject to 157 conditions. I don't know what the 157 conditions are, but the Government certainly spent some time acting as a cheerleader for the project.
The pipeline is expected to triple the amount of bitumen arriving on the Lower Mainland and there is approval to increase the number of tankers from about 5 to 34 per month.
BC's NDP Government took a slightly different view, stating that bitumen shipments through BC would be limited until further study clarified whether the stuff could be cleaned up when there is a spill. As a resident of BC, I don't see this as excessively unreasonable.
Alberta's Premier decided that going ballistic was the best reaction.
B.C.’s move was met with condemnation by Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, who has long championed the pipeline to get Alberta crude to new markets. “Having run out of tools in the toolbox, the government of B.C. is now grasping at straws,” said Notley, calling the proposal rash, illegal and unconstitutional.She followed that up by putting off talks on the purchase of electricity from BC and ordering Alberta's liquor commission to stop importing BC wine.
Opinion and reaction has been, predictably, mixed, depending on the commentator's place of residence. A U of A scientist, however, took this view.
The Prime Minister was jeered at a Nanaimo town hall meeting by people opposed to the pipeline.
Some BC reaction has been more polite, but still resolutely opposed to the project. It views this proposed project as a desperate attempt to fix decades of resource management in Alberta. The project, of course, places nearly all of the risk on BC.
And, as the article points out, we're not even getting much as a nation for going the pipeline route.
If we are selling out core Canadian values like aspiring to be a global leader on climate policy, let’s at least negotiate a decent price. But as usual Canada seems to get very little for exploitation by others of our vast resource endowment.There are many good reasons to oppose this project: more development of fossil fuel projects is incompatible with what's needed to tackle climate change; low global oil prices have impacted Alberta, certainly, but adding more oil to the global supply will not help that situation; reduced demand is coming but a pipeline almost guarantees another 30 years of business as usual and could very well give us an enormous white elephant in the bargain as demand declines.
It is beyond ironic to recall the time when Trudeau Sr brought in the National Energy Program "in the National interest", a program that was hated in Alberta. The National Interest is now being used by oil industry supporters to promote this pipeline project. Really? really?
Perhaps it's time to draw a line in the sand.