Alberta Premier Rachel Notley is looking at an outright government purchase of the Trans Mountain pipeline to ensure its planned expansion is completed to ship more oil to Asia-Pacific markets.
In the escalating battle over the oil sands pipeline project, the Alberta Premier signalled on Tuesday she could put provincial taxpayers’ money on the line in an attempt to gain much-need export capacity, while British Columbia Premier John Horgan dismissed that strategy as irrelevant to his government’s concerns about environmental impacts of potential oil spills, and accused the pipeline proponent, Kinder Morgan Canada Ltd. of trying to create a political crisis in Canada.
However, Ottawa has yet to spell out how it will win over B.C., or ensure the pipeline is built without the province’s support.
Kinder Morgan has warned that if British Columbia continues to throw legal roadblocks in the way of the pipeline-expansion plan, it could be forced to pull the plug on the $7.4-billion project.
The company’s Houston-based parent has set a deadline, saying it needs financial protection for shareholders and an end to the B.C. government’s threats of obstruction by May 31.
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