Politics Briefing: Trudeau says pipeline will be built over BCs wishes

Politics Briefing: Trudeau says pipeline will be built over BC\s wishes
Kinder Morgan pipeline impasse warrants emergency debate, Tories say
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Sunday that he has instructed Bill Morneau to engage Kinder Morgan in formal financial discussions in an effort to get the Trans Mountain expansion built.   

Construction will go ahead Trudeau said to reporters after his landmark Sunday meeting in Ottawa with Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and British Columbia Premier John Horgan. In addition to pursuing financial discussions with Kinder Morgan, Trudeau said the government would go after legislative measures to support the pipeline construction effort. He released few details on the planned legislation and upcoming financial discussions. Notley left the meeting feeling quite confident the pipeline will be built, reiterating the project is in the national interest, while Horgan remained unwavering in his commitment to block the pipeline and protect B.C.s coasts, iPolitics reports.

“I have instructed the minister of finance to initiate formal financial discussions with Kinder Morgan, the result of which will be to remove the uncertainty overhanging the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project,” Trudeau said after the meeting, adding that the government “is actively pursuing legislative options that will assert and reinforce the government of Canada’s jurisdiction in this matter.”

Kinder Morgan pipeline impasse warrants emergency debate, Tories say

Kinder Morgan may be facing intensified protests following the Sunday meeting and the governments announcement on new supports for the Trans Mountain project. Trudeau may be adamant the pipeline will be built but organizer of Indigenous-led protests on Burnaby Mountain and member of the Tsleil-Waututh nation Will George seems just as stubborn. George predicted Trudeaus Sunday announcement would ramp up protests and commented on the lack of Indigenous presence at the Sunday meeting in Ottawa, calling it highly offensive, the Calgary Herald reports.

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Wood Mackenzie research analyst Zachary Rogers said Keystone XL and Enbridge Line 3 are looking increasingly likely to go forward because they avoid the political pitfalls that beleaguered Trans Mountain, and sunk Energy East and Northern Gateway. “While there certainly is risk, and nothing is 100 per cent certain … Line 3 and Keystone XL are likely to proceed,” said Rogers in an interview. He said Trumps support for the fossil fuels industry helps support pipelines to the United States and ranked Keystone XL as the pipeline most likely to be built, CBC News reports.

Saudi Aramco just released its numbers for the first time in 40 years and they show the companys net revenue dwarfs profits generated by all Big Oil companies combined. In the first half of 2017, the Saudi state-owned behemoth reported net income of US$33.8 billion. In the same period, Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc., Chevron Corp., Total SA and BP Plc earned just over US$26 billion together. Based on the size of the company and with its initial public offering looming, Saudi Aramco would have to pay annual dividends of US$80 billion to keep the dividend yield competitive and justify the US$2 trillion valuation the company is seeking, Bloomberg reports.

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Shell defended its plan to reduce carbon emissions Monday to steer investors away from supporting a shareholder motion saying the energy giant is not doing enough to meet international targets on climate change. Last November, Shell introduced their plan to halve carbon emissions from its operations and sale of fuels by 2050. I dont think a 50 percent reduction of CO2 emissions footprint in 2050 meets the Paris climate agreement, said Mark van Baal, founder of climate activist shareholder group Follow This. The shareholder group tabled a resolution to bring Shells actions in line with the Paris Climate Agreement goal of limiting global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius, Reuters reports. The resolution will be voted on at the companys annual general meeting next month.

In fact, Horgan insisted the federal government should approach the Supreme Court to establish who has jurisdiction over B.C.’s environment and pipelines, but Ottawa said it was unnecessary as it had already been established that the federal government has jurisdiction in such matters.

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On Monday morning, Brent Crude was at US$72.10 and West Texas Intermediate was at US$66.87.

The most radical way in which Ottawa can interfere to make sure the project goes ahead is evoking emergency powers, Reuters notes in a recent report on the topic. However, the Liberals would be wary of going that far as this would cost them votes in next year’s elections.

Dont put taxpayers on the hook for Trans Mountain, argue Howard Mann and Aaron Cosbey. Does it make sense from any perspective to put Canadian taxpayers on the hook for billions of dollars chasing assets at odds with climate realities and rapidly changing technologies? No. But we can picture Kinder Morgans shareholders crouched on the edge of their seats, impatiently listening for the creak as that door opens. Read more in iPolitics.

The latter has been apparently necessitated by B.C. Prime Minister John Horgan’s attempts to find a way that asserts the province as the ultimate authority when it comes to environment, even though B.C. opposition lawmakers believe such an attempt is doomed.

Video: Trudeau pledges to push Trans Mountain pipe line forward

Speaker of the House Geoff Regan in the House of Commons in Ottawa, Wednesday, March 22, 2017. The Conservatives today will ask for an emergency debate on the Trans Mountain pipeline situation.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

OTTAWA – The opposition Conservatives today will again ask for an emergency debate in the Commons on the Trans Mountain pipeline situation.

Trudeau Fails to Ease Provincial Rift Over Kinder Pipeline

It is second time in two months the Conservatives have tried to get House Speaker Geoff Regan to agree the pipeline expansion situation merits a special debate to discuss the economic hit Canada will take and the plunging confidence investors have in this country as it struggles to get the big project off the ground.

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UBC law professor questions Ottawas jurisdiction on planned pipeline expansion

In February, Regans office denied the request, saying it did not meet the criteria for an emergency debate but the Tories are asking again now that the company has halted all non-essential spending on the pipeline while Ottawa tries to reassure its investors that the project will move forward despite opposition from the government of British Columbia.

Irina is a writer for the U.S.-based Divergente LLC consulting firm with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.

Conservative natural resources critic Shannon Stubbs wrote Friday to Regan giving notice, but will formally request the debate today.

This comes a day after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau dispatched his finance minister to find a financial arrangement with pipeline builder Kinder Morgan to overcome investor jitters.

Kinder Morgan pipeline impasse warrants emergency debate, Tories say
Kinder Morgan pipeline impasse warrants emergency debate, Tories say

Trudeau is also looking at introducing legislation to reassert federal jurisdiction over the pipeline and says he is open to making additional environmental protections to satisfy British Columbia its coastline will be safe from an oil spill.

The opposition Conservatives today will again ask for an emergency debate in the Commons on the Trans Mountain pipeline situation.

Trudeau promises financial backing for vital Trans Mountain pipeline

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