Sorry, Vancouver: The rest of Canada needs pipelines – by Gary Mason (Globe and Mail – December 2, 2016)

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley should bundle up when she comes to Vancouver next week to sell the merits of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline. She is in for a frosty reception.

There is no bigger opponent of the pipeline than the city’s mayor, Gregor Robertson. When Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the project’s approval this week, Mr. Robertson didn’t hide his disappointment. It was clear the pair’s bromance had taken a hit.

In a statement, Mr. Robertson talked about how Vancouver had the strongest and greenest economy in the country. He boasted about the tens of thousands of jobs that had been created in the city in the past year alone. All of which, he contended, could be jeopardized by the Trans Mountain project.

It’s safe to assume that many in the rest of the country were seething as they listened to the mayor talk about how sweet life is in Shangri-la, where residents can bike to work 12 months a year. Unfortunately, it isn’t so grand everywhere else.

In Alberta, tens of thousands of people have been without work for 18 months. Many of them have used up their employment insurance benefits and have moved on to welfare. On the other side of the country, in Newfoundland, things are even worse. Thousands of workers there depended on the oil patch for employment too. They are sitting at home, idle, losing their homes to foreclosure and their trucks to debt collectors.

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