Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says despite the latest attempt by the British Columbia government to fight construction of the Trans Mountain pipeline project, “the decision has been taken.”
“It (the B.C. government) is not attempting in my view to counteract the authority of the federal government to move forward on the pipeline that’s been approved, that will be built,” she said.
Notley made the comments at another pipeline site, the Enbridge Line 3 replacement project, which begins in Hardisty.
Earlier in the day, the B.C. NDP announced it had hired former judge and party leader Tom Berger to provide legal advice as it seeks intervenor status in court challenges scheduled for the fall.
Notley said she was pleased that in Thursday’s announcement, the government moved away from discussing halting the pipeline and shifted to making sure environmental and First Nations concerns are met.
“The pipeline will go ahead because it is in the best interest of the country as a whole,” she said.
B.C. Environment Minister George Heyman acknowledged the previous Liberal government’s approval of Trans Mountain does limit their powers.
“What we have said is we will use every tool available to defend B.C.’s interest and that’s exactly what we’re doing,” he said. “Some of the tools that were available to B.C. previously were given away from the previous government.”
Berger will outline all options available to stop the project.
B.C. Liberals Energy and Mines Critic Ellis Ross accused the NDP of killing jobs and exploiting Aboriginals.
“The message is that there’s going to be no more projects in B.C.,” he said. “If you come to Canada, come to B.C. and you follow all the rules, get your permits and go through environmental assessments, there’s probably still a good chance we’re not going to allow you to build or invest in B.C.”