EDMONTON, AB: January 31st, the United Conservatives responded to an “emergency” NDP cabinet meeting held to deal with a report that British Columbia’s NDP government plans to restrict the transportation of oilsands crude by pipeline and rail within the province.
“The NDP government of British Columbia has launched a full-frontal attack on Alberta’s economy, and in so doing is violating the law and our constitution. I said in July when the NDP came to office in British Columbia that Alberta should make it clear that there will be consequences if their friends in BC follow through on promise to block TransMountain. We needed to show that our province would retaliate not just with words but with concrete actions. Specifically, I said that we should look at boycotting B.C. hydroelectricity, imposing tolls on B.C. natural gas flowing through Alberta to US markets, and, ultimately, to replicate what Premier Lougheed did in the 1980s by refusing to permit the shipping of oil from the current Kinder Morgan pipeline that fuels much of the B.C. economy. In response, the Government mocked and ridiculed me.” said United Conservative Leader Jason Kenney.
“The fact that the Alberta NDP is only now starting to take this seriously, after numerous attacks by the their friends in BC, just underscores how naive Alberta current government is when it comes to standing up for our province and our industry against attacks. Prior to the NDP’s win in 2015, many within in the NDP – including current MLAs – were actually protesting pipelines. Between the NDP lying to Albertans about their carbon tax, which was supposed to buy ‘social license’ in BC, and their well-documented history of protesting pipelines, the NDP have zero credibility left with Albertans,” added United Conservative Energy Critic Prasad Panda.
“The decision made by the government of British Columbia has real life consequence for Albertans and for Canadians, which limits our ability to pay for our pensions, and to support quality education and healthcare. If I were Premier, I would be giving notice to the government of British Columbia of our intention to seek an application from the courts to suspend these illegal and unconstitutional regulations by the British Columbia government. I would also be demanding that the Prime Minister – with whom our Premier has placed so much faith – immediately intervene to firmly rebuke the BC Government. I think it’s extremely embarrassing for our Premier that she’s been unable to persuade her fellow New Democrats, nor her Liberal allies in Ottawa, to stop this attack on our province’s economy and on free trade within Canada,” concluded Kenney.