Published: Sat, May 26, 2018
Markets | By Otis Pena

Pipeline decision too close to chastise BC at western premiers meeting: Notley

Pipeline decision too close to chastise BC at western premiers meeting: Notley

The Alberta premier said B.C.is purposefully taking actions in the court to inject uncertainty into the process and will not say when it will stop.

The B.C. NDP government does agree with the Alberta NDP government on one point - cutting off shipments of oil, natural gas and refined fuels would indeed serve to punish this province.

She and other Alberta ministers made similar statements when Bill 12 was introduced, debated and passed, leaving no doubt that "its goal was to authorize the government of Alberta to reduce supplies of crude oil, natural gas and refined fuels to cause economic harm to British Columbians in order to punish and put pressure on B.C". "You are the Defendant", reads a claim filed by the BC government in Alberta's Court of Queen's Bench. "They know they won't say it", she said.

"We will soon see if there is will or no will", Cousineau said. However, it won't be proclaimed until the government settles on regulations to accompany the new law.

But all that is prelude to B.C.'s fundamental pushback against Bill 12, namely that it is unconstitutional for one province to try to punish another by restricting exports of its resources.

Premier John Horgan previously said if the bill was passed, his government would sue and he is following through on that promise.

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Repeated court cases have spooked Kinder Morgan.

Owner Kinder Morgan has set May 31 as the date by which it needs to have enough certainty to proceed with the pipeline's expansion.

Alberta deputy premier Sarah Hoffman said without the wealth that would flow from the expansion of the pipeline, all discussions on such issues are moot.

"Certainly Alberta made their case as they always do in a strong and passionate way, and I laid out my concerns about risk and the court cases that we are now enjoined in", he said.

With the deadline just days away, delicate conversations around those complex decisions require her to stay in Alberta rather than heading to the Western Premiers' Conference, Notley said Tuesday.

United Conservative Party Leader Jason Kenney accused Notley of "hiding out in Edmonton" rather than rallying the support of other western premiers and "making it clear we will not cooperate with the B.C. New Democrats on anything unless, and until, this pipeline is built".

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