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FORSETH – British Columbians want the Trans Mountain pipeline project built

(Kinder Morgan photo)

“We appreciate the federal government’s second approval of this existing project. This approval is an important milestone for Alberta, and for Canada. The decision was made on the merits of the project that is supported by the majority of Canadians. Approving the TMX pipeline is a step forward for economic growth and prosperity”

THOSE WORDS from Alberta Premier Jason Kenney following the announcement by Justin Trudeau, that Trans Mountain was going ahead.

Those words, however, were guarded, as he went on to say, “But approval is not construction and, regrettably, for far too long this project has been mired in uncertainty. TMX has been through countless months of consultation and a lengthy and rigorous review process. The immediate test is the start of construction, with shovels in the ground and real progress. Success will be measured by one thing alone: completion of this pipeline.”

An extensive regulatory process was begun by Kinder Morgan, who at that time were the owners of the Trans Mountain Pipelines.  That was in 2012, as they sought National Energy Board (NEB) approval to expand the existing pipeline.

According to Trans Mountain, on Sept. 21, 2018, the NEB received a new Order in Council from the federal Liberal government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, which required the National Energy Board to reconsider its recommendations for the Expansion Project; relevant to project-related marine shipping.

Five days later on Sept. 26, the NEB announced it would hold a public hearing to carry out its reconsideration related to the Trans Mountain Expansion Project.

On Feb. 22, 2019, the National Energy Board (NEB) delivered its Reconsideration report to the Government of Canada, with an overall recommendation that the Trans Mountain Expansion Project is in the Canadian public interest and should be approved. The project will be subject to 156 conditions enforceable by the NEB.

The wait then began for Tuesday’s announcement, an announcement that had Trudeau stating the project was finally to go ahead, and it would begin with shovels in the ground during this construction season.

“First and foremost, this will be welcome news for communities in the North Thompson that are suffering from recent mill closures,” said Conservative MP Cathy McLeod. “The question is when will it get built. I remain skeptical until there are shovels in the ground.

“I question the government’s true desire to get the pipeline expanded givenJustin Trudeau’s desire to phase out Canada’s oil and gas sector,” said McLeod.

“Currently there are two bills before Parliament, C-48 the north coast tanker ban and C-69, the no new pipelines bill. This legislation will make it virtually impossible to get another major energy infrastructure project approved in Canada.”

Tuesday’s news was also welcomed by the BC Conservative Party’s leader Trevor Bolin, “I am pleased seeing the approval and ask that the construction get started immediately.”

This was followed up with the comment that, “The BC Conservatives have and will continue to stand behind the needs of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. This is a project that is good for Alberta, beneficial for B.C. and in the best interest of Canada.”

Meantime, Dr. Jekyll (B.C. NDP Premier John Horgan) and Mr. Hyde (Environment Minister George Heyman) are still refusing to go along with the majority of British Columbians, from right across the province, that wish to see this pipeline go ahead.

On the Twitter feed for @BCTodayOfficial George Heyman stated, “We will not abandon our responsibility to protect our land and our water. We will continue to stand up and defend our environment, our coast and the tens of thousands of jobs that depend on them.”

He went on to state, “The B.C. government still thinks the pipeline expansion poses a significant risk to B.C.’s environment, tourism and economy,” before adding, “as do many British Columbians.”

Well, Sir …. you are 100 percent wrongbecause in actual fact every poll undertaken for month after month has shown a majority 60 per cent and more, IN FAVOR of the project.

And as for Premier Horgan?? More of the same never-ending rhetoric.

“We are disappointed that the federal government has re-approved a project that poses great risks to our coast, our environment and our economy.”

“We will continue to defend our environment, our coast, and the tens of thousands of jobs that rely on them,” he continued.

Can anyone say — we’re headed back to the Supreme Court mantra is back?

Hopefully, the thoughtful considerations and plans of the Alberta government will finally take hold in Ottawa. That’s the hope of Premier Kenney at least.

“Albertans continue to urge the federal government to listen to the provinces, job creators and the Senate on these bills to restore investor confidence and diversify our markets.”

“We remain committed to fighting for additional pipelines, growing the economy and creating good jobs.”

I doubt many believe the fight over the Trans Mountain pipeline has ended, but everyday Canadians are getting louder in insisting they be heard on this matter.

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.

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About Mel Rothenburger (6934 Articles)
ArmchairMayor.ca is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At ArmchairMayor.ca he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

4 Comments on FORSETH – British Columbians want the Trans Mountain pipeline project built

  1. Bill Hadgkiss // June 21, 2019 at 11:07 AM // Reply

    TM expansion does not make $en$e or cent$

  2. It is not rhetoric…it is standing firm on your beliefs. Many credible sources are having second thoughts and many others go along to get along…arguably this project will turn out to be one of the greatest money waste ever.

  3. Tony Brumell // June 19, 2019 at 11:25 AM // Reply

    So lets get ready for a three degree rise in atmospheric temperature.Won’t it be fine when ocean levels rise two meters and wipe out Bangladesh and most large cities on Earth ? Just think of the new populations that will move to Canada and the U. S. And all the demand for new cars and tV’ and other consumer goods. The fact that we are trying to supply a population of 8 billionbut can not does so on any sustainable basis matters not. Everything will be nice and cozy in Inuvik and Baker Lake and we wont have to worry about those pesky Polar Bears or Baluga whales or Caribou .Things will be great !!! Just trust Trudeau and big industry .

  4. Ian M MacKenzie // June 19, 2019 at 10:20 AM // Reply

    Justin’s long-awaited but highly predictable announcement reminds me of my wife’s difficulty in getting into an unmoored boat by standing with one foot on the dock with the other barely anchored on the gunwhale of the boat that slowly drifted away. The splash was inevitable.
    Now we have our PM with a long winded rationale preceding his statement that said “let’s build the oil pipeline ” about 24 hours after he said that climate change hastened by the burning of fossil fuels is an emergency. I guess his splash will arrive this fall, if not before.
    Sounds like he’s at least consistent in the repetition of “we can have our cake and eat it too”.
    But we can’t. We can gain some short term bucks but at the expense of a liveable world.
    As for the cost, – – – well if the completed pipeline will cost us approximately 15 billion $ while the estimated income is considerably less than 200 million (remember that number must be reduced by the cost of interest, operation etc., etc.) we’ll be looking at amortizing this boondoggle in 65 years, which pushes us close to the end of this century.
    And that doesn’t even include the intervening necessary government bailouts to our many citizens bankrupted by extreme weather events now nearing the point of uninsureability according to those in the insurance business, the absolute certainty of a huge stranded asset as the world slowly transitions to renewable energy sources (how long – – – ?), and the government complicity in leaving a dystopian land for our descendants.
    Somehow, even considering the pipeline only from a financial point of view, this is a decision as stupid as paying twice as much for the ancient pipeline in the first place as Kinder Morgan valued it at in its report to its shareholders. And I haven’t even mentioned the recent prediction by the ICCP.
    Now all of us taxpayers will soon know what it feels like to be spread-eagled over an economic and environmental abyss.

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