Alberta politics started October 31, 2018

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NorthReport

Albertans have to be the dumbest folks on the planet. Contrast Norway's future with Alberta and its non-existent Heritage Fund. These Albertan protestors with their current temper tantrums don't yet realize that the fossil fuel party is over and that Albertans a long time ago blew their future by not forcing the fossil fuel companies to contribute their fair share into the Heritage Fund. How stupid and short-sighted can these protestors be!!!

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Canada won’t perform an environmental review of most new oilsands projects. Here’s why.

When it comes to the oilsands, there’s a particular gloss that accompanies industry’s presentation of in-situ extraction.

Unlike the pronounced nature of open-pit mines, with the accompanying heavy haulers and seemingly endless horizons of tailings ponds, in-situ — meaning in ground or in place — operations have a much less visible footprint.

Cenovus has gone so far as to dub these operations — which require the injection of steam underground to heat viscous oil, allowing it to be pumped to surface — “a different oil sands.”

While they certainly do represent the future of the oilsands — in-situ projects have already outpaced mining production and are set to increase by one million barrels per day by 2030 — they also come with their own set of problems.

In-situ oilsands operations are incredibly greenhouse gas-intensive — requiring copious quantities of natural gas, often obtained from fracking, to produce the steam that’s injected underground.

Operations require extensive roads and seismic lines that expose threatened caribou to an increased risk from wolves and create habitat disturbances that are connected to low reproduction and calf survival rates. These compounding impacts to caribou are part of the underlying justification of the province’s controversial wolf cull.

And the proposed use of solvents as a substitute for steam has given new rise to long-held concerns about groundwater contamination from steam-injection processes.

quote:

Back in 2012, the Harper government radically overhauled the country’s environmental assessment processes and introduced the use of a “project list” to determine whether a project — like a dam, power plant or oilsands mine — would be subject to a federal review.

Unlike the previous regime, which relied on automatic “triggers,” the project list dramatically narrowed the activities eligible for federal assessment and accorded a great deal of discretionary power to the federal environment minister.

Thousands of projects per year were no longer reviewed by Ottawa.

Outcry ensued.

The current federal government’s solution, Bill C-69, a new and controversial impact assessment bill currently under debate in the Senate, will overhaul the 2012 legislation — but keep the project list intact.

The contents of that list remain undisclosed to the public. But from the get-go Environment Minister Catherine McKenna indicated in-situ oilsands projects would be exempt from the list.

In a statement e-mailed to The Narwhal, a spokesperson for the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency confirmed this is still the case: “At this time, the approach to draft regulations to support the Impact Assessment Act remains unchanged.”

Last week, the federal environment ministry confirmed to The Globe and Mail that in-situ projects “fall within the exemption eligibility.”

Martin N.

NorthReport wrote:

Albertans have to be the dumbest folks on the planet. Contrast Norway's future with Alberta and its non-existent Heritage Fund. These Albertan protestors with their current temper tantrums don't yet realize that the fossil fuel party is over and that Albertans a long time ago blew their future by not forcing the fossil fuel companies to contribute their fair share into the Heritage Fund. How stupid and short-sighted can these protestors be!!!

Yeah, how stupid and short sighted can these dumb Albertans be? The simple solution is to quit giving $20 billion to Ottawa each year and use the funds instead to build Alberta.

Your comparison of Norway and Alberta is delusional because it eaves out the salient point that Norway is a sovereign nation that keeps its oil revenues while Alberta is a province, whose national government siphons off its prosperity to transfer east.

The obvious solution is for Alberta and Saskatchewan to keep their revenues by forming a sovereign nation.

bekayne

Martin N. wrote:

The obvious solution is for Alberta and Saskatchewan to keep their revenues by forming a sovereign nation.

Oh dear, they're going to go John Galt on us.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

The good news for AlSask is that with the expanded tar sands they will soon have a northern port to ship from without having to go to war with their Western neighbour. Bring on the revitalized Mackenzie Valley pipeline  with a super port in Tuk. They will have to claim the NWT when they secede but that should be no problem.

I love great ideas from people who are grounded in the real world.

Martin N.

Well, 66% of Quebecers want Alberta oil, 70% of BCers want the TransMountain, Ontarians are vocalising support for Alberta oil and gas so it isn't the 'east' against Alberta rather it is unrealistic elitists like Trudeau who believe they can conjur up a new age economy with endless talkfests and other peoples' money.

Renewables share of GDP is only 3% and oil demand will grow to at least 2050.

Trudeau is a clueless twit who thinks his 'charm' can repeal the law of gravity while the country around him falls apart. The Canadian enviroluddites and the elitists who cater to them have no idea of the Alberta spirit and what it can do if raised.

Alberta independence is a last resort to a tone-deaf PM who believes he can govern without ever making any hard choices when reality dictates governing is all about choosing between hard and even harder choices.

Martin N.

kropotkin1951 wrote:

The good news for AlSask is that with the expanded tar sands they will soon have a northern port to ship from without having to go to war with their Western neighbour. Bring on the revitalized Mackenzie Valley pipeline  with a super port in Tuk. They will have to claim the NWT when they secede but that should be no problem.

I love great ideas from people who are grounded in the real world.

Is that sarcasm? I believe so because if you had any concept of reality, you would understand the leverage that Alberta will have with the US. Without the deadweight of Trudopeian policy and redtape, Alberta will soar and attract US investment and export capacity.

I love economic stupidity from failed communists who only bleat about the inequities of capitalism that creates the well fed and the poorly fed while ignoring the reality of egalitarianism that forces all people to starve equally.

wage zombie

Martin N. wrote:
Well, 66% of Quebecers want Alberta oil

Quebecers already get Alberta oil.

Martin N.

wage zombie wrote:

Martin N. wrote:
Well, 66% of Quebecers want Alberta oil

Quebecers already get Alberta oil.

Right you are, but a picayune complaint, none the less. Let me rephrase that lazy posting to whit:

"The Quebec premier’s recent statements about Alberta oil, which he referred to as “dirty energy,” have understandably raised the ire of Western Canadians. Many Albertans might think Quebecers want nothing to do with Western oil, or any oil for that matter. Nothing could be further from the truth. Let’s start with the obvious: A little more than half of the oil that is consumed in Quebec comes from Canada, largely Western Canada, and this proportion has been steadily increasing since 2014.

Are Quebecers OK with that? In fact, a large majority of Quebecers, 66 per cent, prefer to get oil from Western Canada, versus seven per cent who want it from the United States, three per cent from Algeria, and one per cent each for the countries of the Middle East and Nigeria, according to a recent Leger poll conducted on behalf of the MEI."

https://business.financialpost.com/opinion/surprise-most-quebecers-want-...

You can also refer to Quebecers embrace of pipelines as well, if the trauma is surmountable.

quizzical

Martin N. wrote:
kropotkin1951 wrote:

The good news for AlSask is that with the expanded tar sands they will soon have a northern port to ship from without having to go to war with their Western neighbour. Bring on the revitalized Mackenzie Valley pipeline  with a super port in Tuk. They will have to claim the NWT when they secede but that should be no problem.

I love great ideas from people who are grounded in the real world.

Is that sarcasm? I believe so because if you had any concept of reality, you would understand the leverage that Alberta will have with the US. Without the deadweight of Trudopeian policy and redtape, Alberta will soar and attract US investment and export capacity. I love economic stupidity from failed communists who only bleat about the inequities of capitalism that creates the well fed and the poorly fed while ignoring the reality of egalitarianism that forces all people to starve

you're so far away from 7 generations planning and First Nations  philosophy as to be unrecognizable as a human even.

 

 

NorthReport

Weren’t we supposed to get a pipeline decision within 22 weeks?  How much time is there left because if Alberta NDP Premier Notley gets her pipeline she could conceivably win a second term in Alberta and if Trudeau was re-elected my hunch is that he would much rather have Premief Notley rather than Premier Kenney to deal with

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Alberta taxpayers footing bill for delinquent oil and gas companies, investigation reveals

Perry Nelson has been farming near Provost, Alta., for more than 50 years — since he took over from his dad in 1965. He runs mostly cattle, some grain.

In 2012, he bought some more land, for extra pasture for his cattle. As with so much land in Alberta, it came with oil and gas wells already drilled deep down below the surface.

“The wells were on it when I bought it,” Nelson told The Narwhal. “Abandoned wells.”

“I don’t think [the company] had any intention of paying,” he said of the company that owned the wells and owed him money in the form of annual rent for drilling a well on his land.

“That guy’s gone broke I don’t know how many times,” he told The Narwhal. “[The regulator] still lets him start over again.”

Sure enough, according to Nelson, the company was soon a year behind on the annual rent payments it owed.

Nelson, a director with the Alberta Surface Rights Federation — a group of landowners concerned about oil and gas activity on their land — wasn’t having it.

“They have a contract that says what they’re supposed to pay,” he told The Narwhal. “That’s the way they should be paying.”

So Nelson did what many farmers do in this situation — he filed an application to Alberta’s Surface Rights Board. The Surface Rights Board is a tribunal that uses taxpayer money to reimburse landowners what they are owed by oil and gas companies.

Nelson’s was just one of thousands of cases that have been brought forward in recent years.

The government is supposed to recoup the money it pays out to landowners  from companies so taxpayers aren’t footing the bill — but new data obtained by The Narwhal shows that’s simply not happening.

Less than two per cent of funds recovered

There are 450,000 oil and gas wells registered in Alberta. They’re dotted across the province — one for every 1.4 square kilometres — and are on both public and private land.

For many landowners, they have become an enormous burden: there’s the added difficulty of farming around a wellhead, the noxious weeds, the dust, the added traffic.

But it’s goes beyond that. For many farmers and landowners — who are not receiving the basic compensation owed to them by oil and gas companies — there’s a financial headache as well.

In Alberta, landowners are supposed to receive compensation in the form of annual rent, to reimburse them for lost productivity, nuisance and adverse effects.

Far too often, advocates say, the company simply doesn’t pay.

If a company fails to pay a landowner the annual rent they have agreed on, a landowner can apply for a “recovery of rentals” from the Surface Rights Board, as per the Surface Rights Act, and receive their compensation from Alberta’s general revenue fund — in other words, taxpayer money.

This is supposed to be a temporary fix, as the government is then meant to recoup taxpayers’ money by tracking down the company and collecting the funds.

The trouble is, the Crown basically never gets that money back.

Information obtained by The Narwhal shows that, in 2017, less than two per cent of all money paid by the Alberta government on behalf of delinquent oil and gas companies was recovered.

That means that taxpayers are on the hook for the annual rent owed by these absentee oil and gas companies — millions of dollars annually. And the number of cases is only increasing.

“It’s getting worse all the time,” Nelson said of the situation with delinquent oil and gas companies.

“It’s just spiralling down.”

NorthReport

'CP Rail, CP Fail': Calgary residents protest following another oil train derailment in the city

Roger Annis

September 19, 2013

RABBLE NEWS

ECONOMY

ENVIRONMENT

POLITICS IN CANADA

 

Residents of the central Calgary neighbourhood of Inglewood staged a protest action on Friday, September 13 against CP Rail over its transport of dangerous chemicals through the city.

The action was prompted by the derailment of eight cars on a CP Rail train two days earlier. The cars were carrying close to one million liters of a highly flammable gasoline product (diluent) used in the pipeline transport of tar sands bitumen. They derailed at CP's large, Alyth rail yard, adjacent to Inglewood in the heart of downtown Calgary. It’s the second oil train derailment in the city in three months.

Some 75 people took part. They chanted "CP Rail, CP Fail," expressing their anger and frustration with the failure of the company to address concerns stemming from its growing transport of oil-by-train and expansion of noisy and polluting diesel locomotive repair work at the Alyth yard.

Lara Murphy, one of the organizers of the action, told CBC News, "We don't want another Lac Mégantic to happen." She echoed the views of Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi who has criticized the rail transport setup which presently has the city responsible for emergency response and cleanup but which makes it very difficult for it to know what, exactly, is rolling through its jurisdiction on rail.

Nenshi told reporters, "This is not just massively inconvenient -- it's massively dangerous."

Calgary fire Chief Bruce Burrell, who is overseeing the cleanup, said the city will "in all likelihood" bill CP for the cost.

Murphy told the online Calgary Beacon, "Our biggest concern is with the ramped up transportation of oil and gas by the rail industry as a whole."

"If we're gonna transport this oil, I feel and the group feels we need more transparency from the rail companies."

She is part of the Inglewood Community Association that has been fighting CP Rail ever since it began to expand the traffic and locomotive repair work at Alyth in 2009. That brought formal noise complaints from the community. Last month, a victory was scored when the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) ordered the railway to shift  its locomotive work to a different location within the yard and to curb some of its overnight work. (For more detail on the noise problems, see page 6 of this Inglewood community bulletin from March 2011).

Aftermath of Lac Mégantic disaster

 In the ongoing Lac Mégantic investigation, a report by Transport Canada issued on Sept 12 says Quebec portions of the rail track of the Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway are in "defective" and "substandard" condition and do not meet safety standards. One section of the line was closed by inspectors following their observations.

The MM&A line connects Farnham, Quebec, just south of Montreal, to northern Maine. The line is severed by the disaster at Lac Megantic and it is not know when and if the destroyed track will be replaced by a replacement stretch that would go around the town.

CP Rail and Irving Oil contracted with the MM&A in 2012 to join in transporting crude oil from North Dakota to Irving’s refinery, Canada's largest, in Saint John, New Brunswick. CP brought the oil trains as far as Farnham; the MM&A then moved them as far as northern Maine, where its line connects to the Irving-owned NB Southern Railway.

Prompted by shifts in the prices of crude oil, Irving Oil, part of the secretive Irving family conglomerate, has switched app. 25 per cent of its refinery supply away from overseas sources to North Dakota. Since the July 6 disaster at Lac Mégantic, the conglomerate has found other routes to continue moving the North Dakota crude, including along the CN main line that connects Montreal to Halifax, Nova Scotia.

A report in the Sept 14 Portland Press Herald says that crude shipments from North Dakota to Saint John through New England via the shortline Pan-AM Railway have rolled to a stop. That decision is being welcomed by opponents of oil by rail in Maine, including the groups 350 Maine and Maine Earth First! that have been protesting and attempting to block the shipments.

Following this latest accident, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities has reiterated its call for more consultation and information by railways on the dangerous products that they move. But the Federation as well as opposition politicians in Ottawa have raised little or no concerns about the climate consequences of oil-by-train.

Corporate greed is driving a massive expansion of fossil fuel extraction in North America -- oil, coal and fracked natural gas. The difficulty the oil industry is facing in getting quick approval of new tar sands and conventional oil pipelines is prompting the expansion of oil-by-train shipments. In Canada alone, these have risen from 500 carloads in 2009 to an anticipated 140,000 in 2013.

 

 

http://rabble.ca/news/2013/09/cp-rail-cp-fail-calgary-residents-protest-...

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

This might be the break that the Alberta NDP needs to have any chance in the next election. Imagine, a Conservative involved in dirty tricks.

There is strong evidence that laws were broken and Jason Kenney is alleged to have been directly involved in planning the Callaway campaign,” Gill writes.

“This will not be an easy election, especially if Jason Kenney is under investigation for breaking election laws.”

Gill also sheds light on the election commissioner’s investigation into the “kamikaze” campaign for the first time – before the holidays, StarMetro Calgary reported the elections commissioner hired a “retired Edmonton police detective with extensive expertise in fraud and money laundering” to dig into the allegations while Alberta Politics’ David Climenhaga reported a second investigator specializing in “white-collar crimes” had been brought on board.

https://pressprogress.ca/leaked-e-mail-former-ucp-mla-warns-jason-kenney...

quizzical

oh there's more happening than Kenney just breaking AB election laws. 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/jason-kenney-alberta-residence-1.4985648

#voteformikeduffy

NorthReport

We all know the deck is stacked and that Rachel is going to get her pipeline approval probably on February 22 but if life is to survive on planet earth it would indeed be helpful if Canada helped to lead our fragile planet out of this fossil fuel era 

And unfortunately maybe this works in some parts of Alberta but........

https://thetyee.ca/News/2019/01/15/Alberta-Spent-23-Million-BC-Enemy-Canada/?utm_source=weekly&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=210119

NorthReport

I agree and somehow Notley needs to change the channel here

https://thetyee.ca/Analysis/2019/01/24/Alberta-Game-Pipeline-Ad-Campaign/

voice of the damned

NorthReport wrote:

I agree and somehow Notley needs to change the channel here

https://thetyee.ca/Analysis/2019/01/24/Alberta-Game-Pipeline-Ad-Campaign/

That's some highbrow poetry in the comments section...

She's not really NDP IN el turda in the last election the right split the vote and notley went up the middle, to win.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
It won't happen again, probably. I don't think el turda ever had many NDPers.

I know, I know. You can't hold the writer responsible for the comments. But since the Tyee is blaming Notley for the yellow vests...

 

Debater

Jason Kenney calls an NDP candidate “a gay 19 year old”, which draws laughter from his party, followed by “now don’t take it for granted, they elected a lot of them last time”.

(Video Clip:)

https://twitter.com/Vocal_Friend/status/1091437907842224129

bekayne

Debater wrote:

Jason Kenney calls an NDP candidate “a gay 19 year old”, which draws laughter from his party, followed by “now don’t take it for granted, they elected a lot of them last time”.

(Video Clip:)

https://twitter.com/Vocal_Friend/status/1091437907842224129

I don't hear a hard "g" in there, I think he was stammering a bit. 

voice of the damned

bekayne wrote:

Debater wrote:

Jason Kenney calls an NDP candidate “a gay 19 year old”, which draws laughter from his party, followed by “now don’t take it for granted, they elected a lot of them last time”.

(Video Clip:)

https://twitter.com/Vocal_Friend/status/1091437907842224129

I don't hear a hard "g" in there, I think he was stammering a bit. 

I'd be surprised if he said that. Not because I think he's progressive on issues of sexuality, but because the conventional wisdom is that Wildrose lost the 2012 election because of anti-gay comments by one of its candidates, and Kenney is a smooth enough operator to always be mindful of avoiding such remarks.

Mind you, I have known people more progressive than Kenney to occassionally let a slur slip out(usually when they're not really thinking about it, eg. "This big, mean-looking, black guy was giving me dirty looks at the bar", as if the guy's race is relevant to how threatening he seemed), but I still think Kenney would know enough to always be on guard against that sort of thing.

The video doesn't work on my computer, so no way of examining the audio for myself. I see Tom Lukaszuk was in in the comments section, blasting Kenney. I wonder what he's up to, politically, these days.  

quizzical

voice of the damned wrote:

The video doesn't work on my computer, so no way of examining the audio for myself. I see Tom Lukaszuk was in in the comments section, blasting Kenney. I wonder what he's up to, politically, these days.  

trying to bring Kenney down. he was the one who revealed the housing allowance first 

 

voice of the damned

Ah, thanks. I didn't know that. I'm guessing he's got some future plans to run.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..like the courts have somewhat protected bc from the tar sands project via trans mountain it somewhat protects albertans. where the alberta & and canadian governments don't and won't.

Alberta lauds court ruling but has no oil well cleanup plan

Alberta's energy minister says taxpayers are "better protected" thanks to a Supreme Court of Canada decision Thursday that prioritized clean up costs for abandoned oil and gas wells before debts to creditors when companies go bankrupt.

But two years after she began consultations with the energy industry, Margaret McCuaig-Boyd told reporters the New Democratic Party government has no firm timeline to introduce new rules that might limit a multi-billion-dollar public liability for reclaiming about 80,000 inactive wells around Alberta.

quote:

In a 5-2 decision, the Supreme Court of Canada overturned two lower court decisions that said federal bankruptcy law has paramountcy over provincial environmental responsibilities in the case of Redwater Energy which became insolvent in 2015.

Orphan Well Association v. Grant Thornton Ltd. - After going bankrupt, an oil and gas company has to fulfill provincial environmental obligations before paying anyone it owes money to, the SCC has ruled: https://t.co/XVkeyD1NVo #cdnlaw #constitutionallaw pic.twitter.com/6AXNrHcUhC

— Supreme Court of Canada (@SCC_eng) January 31, 2019

The case pitted the provincial regulator against ATB Financial — a financial services firm that is also a provincial Crown corporation in Alberta. ATB Financial had provided financing to Redwater and wanted to recover its investments through the bankrupt oil company's remaining assets.

Debater

Bob Rae has called out Kenney (retweeted by Chantal Hebert & others):

There is something sick anout this. We wouldn’t accept this kind of sneering comment about race or gender from a senior political figure. Why would we accept it about sexual orientation ?

https://twitter.com/BobRae48/status/1091473200603529221

NorthReport

My hunch is Notley is correct about this in that she will get a favourable ruling from her side of the fence from the NEB

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/trans-mountain-should-be-back-on-track-pending-neb-update-notley-says-1.5007468

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Canadian banks signal that Redwater decision now weighs on oilpatch loans

A recent landmark Supreme Court ruling upholding environmental rights is a new wrinkle influencing how wide Canada's banks open their wallets when lending to the oilpatch.

The Canadian Bankers Association (CBA), which represents Canada’s “big five” banks and dozens of others, said the industry “respects” a Jan. 31 Supreme Court of Canada decision that prioritized cleaning up environmental liabilities over repaying loans.

While the organization told National Observer that banks “remain committed” to working with fossil fuel firms, they also said banks must take "anything" into account in decisions about how much money to loan, and at what price.

“Member banks of the CBA each follow their own lending practices; however, all banks in Canada must adhere to strict regulations that require them to manage risk in their lending,” said Mathieu Labrèche, director of media strategy at the bankers association, in response to questions.

“Anything that impacts the ability of a borrower to fully repay a loan must be factored into the decision about the amount and pricing of a loan.”

Spreading to other parts of the oilpatch?

The ruling is a win for the environment, as the receiver involved in the case had sought to “disclaim” abandoned wells and sell off only productive assets. Now, lenders can no longer expect this method to be used when they consider the likelihood of being made whole down the line.

In a pair of reports Monday, credit rating agency Moody's Investors Service said the ruling could mean banks will be less willing to lend to oil and gas producers, because they may now expect to recover less of their loans if firms go belly up.

The court decision was “credit negative for these companies and for banks,” Moody’s said. “For Canadian banks and other creditors, whose claims would be superseded by the need to fulfil environmental regulations, recovery rates would be reduced in the event that an oil and gas producer goes into default.”.....

bekayne
voice of the damned

Hm. I'm not sure if I had known until now that Kenney had lived in Saskatchewan. Goddam creeps and bums.

quizzical

longer the election call is good. Kenney keeps pissing off everyone. 

latest is privatization of hospitals where he said his dad wouldn't have died if there was private hospitals. his dad died during the huge gutting of health care by the Conservatives. privatization is not playing well.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Is Alberta trapped in an abusive relationship with its fossil fuel industry?

Provincial NDP, UCP vie to be saviour of oil and gas economy

Right now, a truck convoy is on its return voyage after travelling to Ottawa to urge the federal government to do more to save Alberta’s oil and gas sector. It will be returning home to a province where Premier Rachel Notley has just declared almost $4 billion will be spent to move 120,000 barrels of oil per day by rail by mid-2020.

This is the culmination of about two months of unusually heightened political agitation in Alberta aimed at rehabilitating a fossil fuel industry unable to recover from a price crash five years ago.

It’s seen Albertans holding pipeline rallies in small towns and big cities; truck convoys travelling between Alberta oil towns rehearsing for the big current cross-country voyage; and even some well-meaning folk writing a pro-pipeline ditty. In an election year, this will likely all escalate as Alberta’s ruling NDP tries to ward off a surging United Conservative Party, each contingent competing to most credibly position itself as the saviour of the fossil fuel economy.

Having grown up there, I can’t help but find the plight behind these efforts especially heartbreaking. But there’s also something frustrating about seeing so much hope and effort dedicated to reviving that industry.

Though it continues to be seen as a provider of wealth, of independence, and of honest work, this is the same industry that has so often thrown Albertans out on the street and obstructed efforts to transition to a more reliable economy. It’s also bent on sabotaging efforts to seriously address climate change. Why does Alberta keep committing to it? Is Alberta trapped in an abusive relationship with its fossil fuel industry?....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Court rejects B.C.'s request to declare Alberta oil export law unconstitutional

A judge has dismissed the British Columbia government's request to declare unconstitutional an Alberta law that could restrict the flow of refined oil products to B.C.

The attorney general of B.C. alleged in a statement of claim that the Preserving Canada's Economic Prosperity Act was meant to counteract steps taken by B.C. in its opposition to the Trans Mountain pipeline project.

B.C. had asked Alberta's Court of Queen's Bench to declare the law unconstitutional, but Justice R.J. Hall wrote in a decision issued Friday that since the law was never officially proclaimed, the request to strike it is premature.

The Act was passed by the Alberta legislature last May and allows limits on fuel exports to B.C.

Plans to triple capacity along the existing Trans Mountain pipeline from Edmonton to Burnaby have pitted Alberta and the federal government against B.C.'s government, which says the risk of a spill is too great for the province's environment and economy.

Hall wrote that should the Alberta Government proclaim the Act into force, B.C.'s attorney general may file again.

"Without giving my opinion here, as to the propriety of an injunction application before proclamation of a statute, I am of the view that a claim seeking a declaration as to constitutionality of an Act that has not yet been proclaimed, is premature," Hall wrote.

"For the court to consider such a claim, the Act must first be in force.".....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Alberta government subsidies increasing for fossil fuel industry: report

The Alberta government's subsidies to the fossil fuel sector are increasing and surpassed $2 billion in the last fiscal year, according to a report released this morning by Environmental Defence and the International Institute for Sustainable Development.

Premier Rachel Notley has invested in helping oilpatch companies reduce their greenhouse gas emission intensity and help fund the construction of new petrochemical facilities and bitumen upgrader facilities, to name a few of the subsidies listed in the report.

Just this week, Notley announced a $3.7-billion deal to lease 4,400 oil tank cars to boost rail exports from the province and $80 million in royalty credits for Nauticol Energy's $2-billion methanol plant near Grande Prairie.

The report finds over the last three fiscal years, the government has subsidized the fossil fuel industry by $1.6 billion a year on average. 

"We know that there are lots of different programs between royalty credits and tax incentives and different research opportunities for oil and gas companies in Alberta to receive funds from the government," said Joshua Buck, with Environmental Defence, in an interview.

"That's a lot of money at a time when our province is running a deficit and there's lots of things that we could use scarce resources for.".....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Robyn Allan: An open letter to Rachel Notley and Jason Kenney

Dear Rachel Notley and Jason Kenney,

Whichever one of you is entrusted with the opportunity to lead Alberta into the future after the provincial election, here is what you need to know to navigate the most challenging issue in your province’s history — the era of stranded assets in the oilsands.

The Alberta oilsands sector is a mature sector, not a growth sector. It has entered the phase in its lifecycle where corporate boardroom discussions have transitioned from the inevitability of rapid oilsands expansion to how best to sustain current production. In this phase of the oilsands lifecycle, Trans Mountain’s expansion is obsolete.

No amount of market intervention or increased oil industry subsidization can alter the course these captains of industry are on. However, that will not stop them from angling for taxpayer handouts by pretending another wave of oilsands investment is just beyond the horizon. The more taxpayer money they can convince all levels of government to transfer to their corporate treasuries, the easier their transition off fossil fuels becomes.

The idle promise of further oilsands investment is the likely motivation behind the Trudeau government quietly negotiating such a sweet toll rate deal for Trans Mountain’s shippers last fall. Despite Finance Minister Morneau’s promise to Canadians that it would not happen, Trans Mountain has agreed to provide oil producers who use the existing line with a $2 billion toll subsidy over three years mounting to a $3.4 billion toll subsidy over five years.....

voice of the damned

I'm of a mixed mind about this video-taping scandal, nicely summarized by Graham Thomson...

https://tinyurl.com/y366ntnn

Filming people via cell phone is such a common, and, judging by You Tube clicks, respectable practice these days, I'm struggling to convince myself that the UCP broke any serious taboo here. Not sure about Thomson's comparison with the actions of "authoritarian governments", since such governments usually have surveillance infrastrcuture that is denied to the civil society. Whereas anyone, if they want to, is pretty much free to do what the UCP did here.

That said, pretty bad optics(no pun intended), and you really have to wonder what the payoff is supposed to have been. Even if the UCP's darkest spin is true, and Gill was negotiating a floor-crossing, how does it benefit the UCP to pre-emptively expose that? Is Gill such a hated person that voters who were thinking of supporting the NDP will reconsider based on the party's alleged willingness to allow him to join? 

And anyway, if a floor-crossing was negotiated, it would be front-page news, so no need for the UCP's low-rent Big Brother tactics. It only makes sense if Gill decides not to cross, but the UCP wants proof that he was thinking of it. Still seems like a pretty useless hill to die on.  

 

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

These cellphone warriors are paid by the taxpayers to look after the people of the constituency that their MLA represents. Spying on your political opponents hardly fits that description.

After viewing the video, Speaker Robert Wanner issued a warning letter to all MLAs Thursday saying, "This type of behaviour is unbecoming for those who work in the office of a Member and is not in keeping with the dignity of the institution."

bekayne
jerrym

Brian Jean is attacking Jason Kenney for creating a fiscal fairy tale. LOL Here is Jean's editorial on this.

My prediction: Kenney will discover should he be elected that things are so much worse than he expected and drastic cuts are the only solution. 

When I stepped away from politics, I promised to continue to advocate on issues that matter to Albertans. Advocacy involves pushing good ideas at your opponents and your friends. You try to encourage them to do the right thing and that means speaking out when the wrong things are being said.

Recent policy announcements from Jason Kenney have me concerned.

In the last three weeks, Kenney has declared about 70 per cent of the Alberta budget to be off-limits when it comes to finding savings. He has also one-upped the NDP’s insanely optimistic growth projections for Alberta’s GDP. In doing so he is being as fiscally irresponsible as the NDP.

This is a huge problem because Alberta is currently spending $7 billion dollars more per year than we bring in and it will get worse. Soon our total debt will be over $100 billion dollars — up from zero just seven years ago. And there is no plan to pay any of this debt off.

There are only two ways out of a fiscal mess: more money in or less money out.

More money in can come from higher taxes, but that costs jobs and hurts the economy. Or it can come from economic growth. However, any significant economic growth is hampered by Alberta’s inability to sell our oil to world markets. That is not going to change unless we have much more oil getting to tidewater than the 590,000 new barrels per day we may get from Trans Mountain. ...

The NDP don’t agree. In their “Path to Balance” document they predict that in the next five years Alberta’s GDP will grow by over $100 billion or 22.3 per cent. That would be the best five-year period since 1980. There is no reason to believe we will have another super-boom. The NDP’s economic predictions are garbage.

The problem is that just this week Kenney predicted that with his corporate tax cuts we will grow our economy by over $113 billion or 25.7 per cent in the same period! It’s just not possible.

Regardless, there is little evidence that Alberta has a revenue problem. We do have a spending problem. Because of politics as usual, during the good times we created the most expensive government in Canada which we can only afford during good times. These are not good times and we are heading back into recession. We need to tackle this problem. But Kenney seems to have missed this.

First Kenney declared — as an afterthought to an insignificant MLA pay cut — that there would be no cuts in pay for public-sector workers in Alberta. Pay represents about half of what government spends, so a promise of “no pay cuts” is a very significant announcement. Then a few days later, Kenney declared that there would be no savings to be found in health care, which is over 40 per cent of the provincial budget.

Together those two announcements take 70 per cent of the budget off the table. What’s left? The “non-pay” part of things like justice, transportation and agriculture, and services to seniors and children. Most of that money is spent providing necessary programs and services for Albertans. It will be impossible to find enough savings there to make a meaningful dent on the budget deficit without draconian cuts. ...

https://edmontonjournal.com/opinion/columnists/brian-jean-kenney-selling...

 

jerrym

A former UCP constituency board member has delivered a blistering attack on Kenney over recent resignations from the party.

A former member of a United Conservative constituency association in Southern Alberta delivered a blistering rebuttal Wednesday to Jason Kenney’s characterization of a recent slew of resignations.

Mark Hudson was one of six board members who departed the UCP Livingstone-MacLeod constituency association earlier this month. In a statement to media Wednesday morning, Hudson said he left because of personal attacks and bullying by UCP board members over his co-operation with an investigation into Jeff Callaway’s short-lived 2017 leadership campaign. ...

“It is unfortunate that the UCP party, a party which Kenny promised to be grassroots driven and focused on eradicating entitlement, corruption and top-down rule, has ultimately fallen to this,” Hudson, once the association’s vice-president of fundraising and events, wrote in the statement. 

Alberta election commissioner Lorne Gibson has been digging into alleged “irregular financial contributions” made to Callaway’s candidacy, which has been accused of being a “kamikaze mission” orchestrated so Callaway could aggressively attack rival Brian Jean on Kenney’s behalf. ...

Kenney said that, in a handful of ridings where a favoured candidate lost, people felt slighted, and that this is the consequence of contested nominations. “I’m just not going to be spending the next several weeks talking about personality conflicts,” Kenney said. He added that the board members who resigned make up “a fraction of a fraction of a per cent of the two thousand local volunteers who sit on UCP boards.”

Three associates of the UCP have been disciplined for their activities around the Callaway campaign, though the full nature of those activities is unclear. The commissioner fined two of the associates, while the party removed the third as a candidate in the upcoming election. ...

Hudson also refuted suggestions by Kenney and UCP MLA Jason Nixon that the recent exodus of UCP Livingstone-Macleod board members was driven by bitterness over the results of a recent nomination race. 

Five members of the constituency association, including president Maureen Moncrieff, abruptly resigned following a March 7 board meeting over concerns the party was failing to adhere to its so-called “grassroots guarantee.” A sixth member left earlier after she chose not to renew her party membership. ...

https://www.thestar.com/calgary/2019/03/13/former-ucp-board-member-says-...

 

voice of the damned

Babble is now promoting a book about the 2015 NDP victory called Orange Chinook. I'm sure it has some interesting stuff, and I'll probably try to read it at some point. But what the hell is with the title? Huge portions of Alberta don't get chinooks, including the city where the NDP is strongest.

 

quizzical

yes Alberta areas do get chinooks other than Calgary including Edmonton. 

not as often but around 1/2 as much.

 

voice of the damned

quizzical wrote:

yes Alberta areas do get chinooks other than Calgary including Edmonton. 

not as often but around 1/2 as much.

 

Hm. Okay. I lived in Edmonton for 32 years, and I don't think I ever heard anyone say "Ah, here comes the chinook". It was definitely something associated with Calgary(whch of course has a theatre and I'm guessing a few other businesses named after them) and surrounding areas.

Maybe we were experiencing them, but just not using the terminology?

voice of the damned

Braid: Harper and Scott Moe come down hard on Brian Jean

https://tinyurl.com/y6ebn8xj

As in Stephen Harper, and Premier Moe. I wonder how the intervention of an erstwhile part-time Albertan, and a complete non-Albertan, will go down in the conservative ranks.

voice of the damned

Alberta's Office of the Election Commissioner has turned over to the RCMP its investigation into allegations of irregular political contributions involving the so-called "kamikaze" campaign of United Conservative Party leadership contender Jeff Callaway.

https://tinyurl.com/y5jff6ot

 

quizzical

voice of the damned wrote:

quizzical wrote:

yes Alberta areas do get chinooks other than Calgary including Edmonton. 

not as often but around 1/2 as much.

 

Hm. Okay. I lived in Edmonton for 32 years, and I don't think I ever heard anyone say "Ah, here comes the chinook". It was definitely something associated with Calgary(whch of course has a theatre and I'm guessing a few other businesses named after them) and surrounding areas.

Maybe we were experiencing them, but just not using the terminology?

guess it just goes unrecognized for others in the province for what it is warmer jet stream coming from the Pacific.

was geeking out one day in GP when the temp had gone from mi us double digits to melting and found some stuff on it.

voice of the damned

quizzical wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

quizzical wrote:

yes Alberta areas do get chinooks other than Calgary including Edmonton. 

not as often but around 1/2 as much.

 

Hm. Okay. I lived in Edmonton for 32 years, and I don't think I ever heard anyone say "Ah, here comes the chinook". It was definitely something associated with Calgary(whch of course has a theatre and I'm guessing a few other businesses named after them) and surrounding areas.

Maybe we were experiencing them, but just not using the terminology?

guess it just goes unrecognized for others in the province for what it is warmer jet stream coming from the Pacific.

was geeking out one day in GP when the temp had gone from mi us double digits to melting and found some stuff on it.

It's also possible that people in Edmonton do recognize chinooks as occuring in the city, and I'm just a bit ignorant on the matter.

That said, I did always hear about it being a southern phenomenon, and it wouldn't be my first choice to symbolize all of Alberta. Sorta like using the Maple Leaf to represent all of North America, because New England has a few of them as well.

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