Federal Government to Buy Trans Mountain Pipeline for $4.5-Billion

Federal Government to Buy Trans Mountain Pipeline for $4.5-Billion

The federal government's plan to buy a controversial pipeline project and related assets for $4.5 billion has generated local and national reactions ranging from disappointment to betrayal, according Kootenay Columbia MP Wayne Stetski.

John Horgan, British Columbia's premier, has asked a court to determine whether the province has jurisdiction over the pipeline, vowing to block the expansion if the court says yes. "We're seeking the ensure the project gets done, but we will always try and make sure the project presents a fair situation for Canadians", he said. He calls the move a "devastating blow" to energy investment in Canada.

Kinder Morgan investors must still vote on the sale, which is scheduled to close in August, but the deal will allow construction to resume immediately, the minister said. Early Friday morning, the group is planning on enforcing their own "People's Injunction", signed by more than 140 people - many who live in Burnaby's Westridge and Forest Grove neighbourhoods - demanding that work on the pipeline expansion stop immediately. Today, nothing has changed; there are still protestors, court proceedings and MPs who oppose this project.

Soon after the announcement, a rally was planned for Vancouver to express the pipeline opponents' opposition.

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The two western provinces have been sparring over the pipeline, a situation that Mr Morneau said can not be allowed to "fester". If completed, it would almost triple the pipeline's capacity to transport crude and refined oil from Alberta to B.C.

Experts in the field argue that the purchase of this infrastructure implies great political risks for the Liberal Party, led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, with a view to the federal elections of October 2019, as well as implications of a financial nature. "These are exceptional circumstances and should not be considered the norm", the association said.

In a prepared statement, Wilkinson said B.C. had provoked a constitutional crisis over the project. The Prime Minister responded with a quote from Notley that the government met the deadline set by Kinder Morgan and "this project has more certainly than ever".

The expanded pipeline will give Alberta, which lies inland, improved access to the ocean and markets in Asia leading to higher tax revenues for both, the province of Alberta and the Federal Government. Social activist and author Naomi Klein called the government's plans a "desperate scam". If no new buyer is reached by July 22, Kinder Morgan will present the $4.5 billion offer from Canada to its shareholders for a vote before the end of July.

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On Monday, she pleaded guilty to criminal contempt in relation to her March arrest during a pipeline protest. She must pay a $1,500 fine.

"The protesters and the opposition, and the civil disobedience is probably going to increase", Khelsilem said.

"I do believe the federal government now is totally accountable, not just for regulation and approval of a pipeline, but they now are responsible from wellhead to tidewater and beyond", he said. Khelsilem said the decision rewards the Texas-based company and transfers the risk to Canadian taxpayers.

Meanwhile, the rally drew hundreds of Vancouverites, all opposing the Kinder Morgan purchase.

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