Canada’s Prime Minister says he will not risk the environment along BC’s north coast and is calling on the National Energy Board to reject the Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline. Justin Trudeau says his government will introduce legislation to legally ban the tankers off the north coast next spring. The moves kill the pipeline that would have transported oil from Alberta, through northern B.C. to Kitimat. The $7.9 billion project promised 4,000 construction jobs and more than 1,000 long term jobs across B.C..
Trudeau says his party campaigned on the belief that Canada needs to move towards a low carbon future. “Strong action on the environment is good for the economy,” Trudeau told a news conference in Ottawa.
Conservative MP for Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies Bob Zimmer is disappointed with the decision. Under the Conservatives, the project was given the blessing from the National Energy Board with conditions. “Disappointed with the decision. We think it’s a viable project, with the conditions that we laid out, the 209 conditions,” said Zimmer. He added “It is what it is. Maybe in the future.”
However the Prime Minister announced his cabinet has approved Kinder Morgan’s proposal to triple the capacity of its Trans Mountain pipeline from Alberta to Burnaby. The $6.8-billion project has sparked protests by climate change activists from coast to coast.
That decision has drawn the ire of First Nations and environmental groups in B.C. “With this announcement Prime Minister Trudeau has broken his climate commitments, broken his commitments to Indigenous rights, and has declared war on B.C.,” said Greenpeace Canada spokesperson Mike Hudema.
Trudeau also approved Enbridge’s $7.5-billion Line 3 pipeline expansion from Alberta to Wisconsin.