NDP Appointees Declare Battle on Kinder Morgan and Energy East

EDMONTON, AB: Chief NDP oil sands advisors need to be publicly reprimanded and fired for threatening to fund expensive legal battles and do “whatever it takes” to block Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain expansion, the Wildrose Official Opposition said.

In an email sent by Oil Sands Advisory Group (OSAG) member Karon Mahon from Stand.earth, Mahon tells members that they will oppose Kinder Morgan’s pipeline “in the streets… in the courts” and “at the ballot box” with “an amazing series of plans to continue the opposition against Kinder Morgan.”

Shortly after that email was sent to members, OSAG co-chair Tzeporah Berman said “supporting the Alberta Climate Plan… doesn’t mean support for every pipeline proposal” and suggested no new pipelines are needed under the NDP’s planned emissions cap.

OSAG member Tim Gray’s organization Environmental Defence immediately warned new pipelines will exceed the NDP’s planned emissions cap and followed that statement up with a fiery email sent this morning promising to “dig in to stop the largest tar sands pipeline ever proposed – Energy East.”

Wildrose Leader Brian Jean said the long expected approval of Kinder Morgan is a good step, but Alberta needs shovels in the ground and support for even more pipeline proposals.

“Premier Rachel Notley can’t have her chief oil sands advisors publicly declaring war on several important pipeline projects Alberta needs built,” Jean said. “It’s clear, the NDP has failed to receive their so-called ‘social license’ with these individuals despite bringing in the largest tax increase in Alberta history. They need to go or Premier Notley needs to denounce their work attacking Alberta’s energy sector.”

Wildrose believes it’s important for leaders and governments to make clear they will support the rule of law, the approval and rulings made by the independent NEB and the work done by pipeline companies to meet conditions of approval.

With the Northern Gateway pipeline previously approved but then hijacked through special interests, politicized by now Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and now rejected, Wildrose Shadow Minister Leela Aheer said we can’t let the same thing happen again with Trans Mountain.

“Gateway is a pipeline that should be built, but the Liberal government chose politics over evidence-based decision making and blocked that pipeline with a tanker ban put on top of it,” Aheer said. “With friends of the NDP already trying to tie the Trans Mountain expansion in legal knots before construction begins, it’s more important than ever for the NDP to denounce this activity within their own government.”