Trudeau Fails to Ease Provincial Rift Over Kinder Pipeline

Trudeau Fails to Ease Provincial Rift Over Kinder Pipeline

Prime Minister Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Sunday he has instructed his finance minister to begin talks with Kinder Morgan to "remove the uncertainty" hanging over the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project that would almost triple the flow of oil from Canada's oil sands to the Pacific Coast.

"I have also informed premiers Notley and Horgan today that we are actively perusing legislative options that will assert, thus reinforce, the Government of Canada's jurisdiction in this matter, which we know we clearly have".

One of the main questions going into the meeting with the premiers is what Trudeau can and will do to convince Horgan not to try to block the pipeline project, which will carry oil from Alberta through B.C.to markets in Asia.

The Independent Contractors and Businesses Association meanwhile insisted: "Premier Horgan is effectively ripping up a contract which Kinder Morgan negotiated in good faith with the federal and provincial governments of the day", said ICBA president Chris Gardner.

Indigenous leaders are promising to continue the fight against Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline expansion despite the prime minister's insistence that it will be built.

"I wanted to be able to sit down with the premier of British Columbia and the premier of Alberta together and discuss issues of the national interest and demonstrate the federal government's commitment to getting this project built".

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He emphasised his "commitment" to build a Ram temple in Ayodhya, and the imposition of a Uniform Civil Code in the country. He added that though associated with the VHP "for the past 32 years", he was "no longer with the organisation".

"We are going to get the pipeline built".

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Sunday his government is holding "financial discussions" and weighing legislation to help resolve a high-stakes clash between two Canadian provinces over a major pipeline project.

"Everyone wins in the sense it could have been much more belligerent", said David Moscrop, a political theorist who specializes in democratic deliberation and political decision-making at SFU.

"Alberta has promised to release legislation this week but it's not clear what that's about", she said.

"We must recognize that they remain at an impasse, which only the government of Canada has the capacity and the authority to resolve", he said.

Some, such as Alberta opposition leader Jason Kenney, have called for the Ottawa to take a hardline with B.C.by threatening to withhold federal funding from the province unless it backs down and allows the project to proceed.

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"What is awesome to me is that there's so much mythology that's part of the discourse - a lot of it coming from Rachel Notley, but some things are being parroted in the mainstream media analysis about what the various governments can or cannot do", said Lee, who is also co-director of the Climate Justice Project, a research partnership with the University of British Columbia's School of Community and Regional Planning.

A lack of scientific clarity on how diluted bitumen behaves in water, and a lack of political clarity over who is responsible to pay in the event of such a spill, are two of his chief concerns, Horgan added.

"What the government of British Columbia is doing undermines the national interest, divides the country, thwarts the rule of law and severely undercuts our ability to attract sorely needed investment to Canada", he said.

"His damaging policies ... have only led to more uncertainty and instability in Canada's resource sector", Scheer said.

At the legislature Sunday, Alberta Party leader Stephen Mandel said Ottawa already has the jurisdiction it needs.

"We've been fighting as hard as we possibly can to defend the jobs that Albertans and Canadians rely on, to advance our climate goals, and to support working families now and into the future", Notley said following the meeting with Horgan and Trudeau.

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"B.C.ers and Albertans are not opponents; they are neighbours", the prime minister said.

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