Kevin Sorenson Reports
Standing Up for Alberta Energy
In the first week of the 2016 Session of the House of Commons, the Conservative Party of Canada introduced a Motion asking that the Liberal government recognize the importance of the energy sector to the Canadian economy and to support resource development in an environmentally sustainable and economically responsible manner.
Thousands of Canadians are losing their jobs in the resources sector. In defiance of this crisis, the Liberal Government has introduced regulations that will impede the Canadian energy sector from getting oil and energy resources to market in the safest way possible. Instead of allowing scientific experts to make environmental assessments free from political oversight, Prime Minister Trudeau is centralizing the decision making process in the PMO without proper public oversight.
All projects already go through an environmental and community assessment process. The previous Conservative government removed layers of decision making so that projects would be judged on scientific evidence.
Canadians and Albertans in particular, are alarmed at the Liberal government’s apparent flippant and dismissive conduct when it comes to our country’s energy sector. Failing to address the downturn in our energy economy shows a disregard for Canadian families who depend on the success of the sector. Justin Trudeau has now launched searches for ‘social licenses’ that will delay pipeline proposals and energy projects that already have scientific approval. Future projects will face lengthy delays.
These new regulations mean that Canada is no longer open for business for many of our potential overseas customers. These new impediments send a terrible message to the resources sector and to investors around the world. In the future, job creators can expect longer delays because of these added regulatory hurdles. The efforts and resources to be spent on securing social licenses will open the gates on regular and expanded political interference in the process. Any regulations that exceed those of our American partners place Canadian firms at a competitive disadvantage.
Our Motion simply asked that Liberal Members of Parliament express their support for the Energy East pipeline project and to acknowledge the importance of the energy sector to our national economy. The Motion acknowledged the role that sustainable resource development plays in creating jobs, providing economic growth, and supporting hard-working Canadian families. The Motion was not a binding measure. It was designed to send a signal to industry, to the men and women out of work and the investors that in principal, Canada support pipelines. The benefits of Energy East, for example, will stretch across the country.
It was very disappointing when the Liberal Prime Minister whipped his caucus into voting against our Motion. The Liberal Government doesn’t understand the important role the Energy Sector plays for the Canadian economy. It was disturbing to see government MPs unable to even acknowledge the importance of Canada’s energy sector.
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