Friday’s recommendation that the Trans Mountain Expansion Project should be approved while positive, does not get us anywhere close to getting the pipeline built according to a local Member of Parliament.
MP for Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo issued a news release criticizing the Liberal federal government and said there is still no timeline for when consultation with First Nations will conclude or when a final decision on the project will be made.
She maintains by directing the National Energy Board (NEB) to undertake a “costly and unnecessary” 22-week reconsideration on the expansion that progress was further delayed.
“This is all part of Justin Trudeau’s plan to kill Canada’s energy sector,” McLeod said.
“The mistakes the Liberals made on the Trans Mountain Expansion, their ‘no more pipelines’ Bill C-69 and other anti-energy policies and legislation have destroyed Canada’s reputation as a stable, fair, predictable destination for energy investment.”
The National Energy Board (NEB) said the Trans Mountain expansion project is in the Canadian public interest and should be approved despite being likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects on Southern resident killer whales, hurt Indigenous related culture, and increase greenhouse gas emissions.
“While a credible worst-case spill from the Project or a Project-related marine vessel is not likely if it were to occur the environmental effects would be significant,” the NEB adds.
“While these effects weighed heavily in the NEB’s consideration of Project-related marine shipping, the NEB recommends that the Government of Canada find that they can be justified in the circumstances, in light of the considerable benefits of the Project and measures to minimize the effects.”
156 conditions will be imposed on the project if it is approved.
Benefits of the project according to the NEB include increased access to diverse markets for Canadian oil, jobs created across Canada, the development of capacity of local and Indigenous individuals, communities and businesses, direct spending on pipeline materials in Canada, and considerable revenues to various levels of government.
Williams Lake Council agreed to write letters in support of the Trans Mountain expansion project last spring at the request of Councillor Scott Nelson.
“It’s a political statement in terms of ensuring that when these types of projects that come forward it has massive impacts not only in Alberta but B.C as a whole both in terms of economics and jobs,” Nelson said calling it a ‘win-win for everybody.’
“During the construction of this, it will create 15,000 jobs and that’s significant. There are significant tax dollars that come back to municipalities across B.C and Alberta.”
B.C’s Minister of Environment, George Heyman said Friday he shares British Columbian’s deep concerns about the risk that an oil spill poses to Indigenous communities and the province’s environment, economy, and coast.
“This project is not in the best interests of the tens of thousands of people who depend on our coast for their livelihoods,” he tweeted.
“We’re going to continue to assert our right to defend BC’s environment in court and will continue to insist the federal government take B.C.’s concerns seriously.”