Alberta premier - 'I am ready and prepared to turn off the taps'

Alberta premier - 'I am ready and prepared to turn off the taps'

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says while she welcomes Ottawa's renewed commitment to backstopping the Trans Mountain pipeline, her government will still pass a bill that could punish B.C. with oil-related price spikes.

The announcement, coming on the very day when the company's Calgary-based Canadian operation is scheduled to hold its annual meeting, bore the hallmarks of an effort to ratchet up the pressure in advance of Kinder Morgan's May 31 deadline.

"As a government we need to ensure that the rule of law is respected and that investors have the certainty needed to complete the Trans Mountain expansion project because it's in the national interest to do so".

Kinder Morgan has ceased all non-essential spending on the $7.4-billion pipeline project that would twin the existing pipeline between Burnaby, B.C., and Edmonton. But the NDP government in B.C. says the project, which would triple the pipeline capacity and increase the number of oil tankers travelling along the coast, poses an unacceptable risk to the environment. "It seems to me it's mostly rhetoric and hyperbole instead of substance British Columbians and Canadians can grab on to".

"Mr. Morneau and Mr. Trudeau know we're acting legally, correctly within our constitutional jurisdiction", Heyman said, noting B.C. continues to issue work permits for the project in a fair and responsible way.

Morneau said if Kinder Morgan doesn't want to jump on board, there are plenty of others who will, but didn't say whom.

Notley has lauded Bill 12 - the Preserving Canada's Economic Prosperity Act - as a way to strategically deploy Alberta resources.

"If they refuse to do that we'll take them to court and we'll challenge the constitutionality of their bill", Eby told reporters.

"If the path forward for the pipeline through B.C.is not settled soon, I am ready and prepared to turn off the taps", she said during a news conference at the legislature Wednesday. "From day one, Horgan has known that he can not block this project and chose to play politics instead of working for the best interests of British Columbians".

The Liberal government position is that it approved the project in 2016 after a rejigged environmental assessment and Indigenous consultation process, and in concert with the its climate change and oceans protection plans. "Instead of the private sector paying to build this pipeline, taxpayers will now be responsible for cleaning up Horgan's mess", he said in a statement.

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