“BRITISH COLUMBIA’S highest court has spoken, unanimously, and the time for obstruction of the TMX pipeline is now over. I look forward to working with B.C. and the federal government to realize the enormous benefits of this project, which is supported by clear majorities in both our provinces and across Canada” … so said Alberta Premier Jason Kenney on Friday.
Good luck with that, sir, because B.C.’s NDP government, led by Premier John Horgan, along with Attorney General David Eby, aren’t done yet in this squabble that has cost the B.C., Alberta, and Canadian economy billions upon billions of dollars … never mind the costs of umpteen dozen of lawyers fighting this battle out in court.
Making it clear of their intentions — B.C.’s Attorney General indicated the fight is STILL ON. Eby’s statement, in response to the judgment by the British Columbia Court of Appeal on B.C.’s reference case, was as follows:
“… we thank the B.C. Court of Appeal for considering this reference. Our government said from the outset that we would stand up for British Columbia’s environment, economy and coast … we are disappointed with the decision … our government always said this case would likely be heard before the Supreme Court.
“In fact, we asked the federal government to join us in a joint reference to the Supreme Court of Canada …”<
Still, as the majority of people in B.C. know, and those in Alberta overwhelming understand, the Trans Mountain Pipeline would be a win-win for both of our provinces. It would allow for Alberta to finally realize a fair price for their natural resources … it could provide much-needed relief at the gas pumps for those of us here in B.C. … and create new jobs in both of our provinces.
Which is why Kenney stated that, “… the court decision is an occasion for real hope for the hard-working people of both provinces.”
Still, it seems that our stubborn, pig-headed provincial government in B.C. plans to fight this battle down to the last court of appeal, and/ or the last nickel in the provincial treasury.
This, because, as Eby has stated, “We continue to believe that we have the authority and the responsibility to defend our environment and economy, so we will exercise our right to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada.”
Back over in Alberta, according to Premier Kenney:
“BC Premier John Horgan has said many times that this reference and the other legal challenges to the pipeline are ‘about the rule of law.’ We agree, and in light of the court’s decision, we hope that the B.C. government will respect the rule of law and end its campaign of obstruction.
… this reference is not about whether the planned Trans Mountain pipeline expansion (“TMX”) should be regulated to minimize the risks it poses to the environment — that is a given … B.C.’s proposed law would unconstitutionally interfere with that federal jurisdiction.
“The court was clear that B.C.’s proposed law ‘is intended … to prohibit’ the flow of Canadian oil … via the TMX pipeline or by rail”.
The B.C. Court of Appeal unmistakably told the B.C. NDP government that its proposed law is ‘an immediate and existential threat to a federal undertaking … and is therefore outside the province’s jurisdiction”
And so, the fight is still on … with no end in sight as John ‘The Destroyer’ Horgan … and David ‘The Fatal Fury’ Eby continue their tag-team battle royale through the courts.
Alan Forseth is a Kamloops resident and former member of the Reform Party of Canada and the B.C. Reform Party, and a past and current member of the BC Conservative Party. His blog is My Thoughts on Politics and More.