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Politicians react to Senate committee recommendation to scrap tanker ban bill

Last Updated May 16, 2019 at 8:25 am MDT

A aerial view of Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain marine terminal filling a oil tanker in Burnaby, B.C., is shown on Tuesday, May 29, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward

A Senate committee has voted to scrap Bill C-48.

The committee will now take its recommendation to the full Senate.

Alberta Senator Doug Black calls it a good day for Alberta and Canada.

OTTAWA – A federal bill banning tanker traffic on B.C.’s north coast has been defeated by a Senate committee, which is welcome news to politicians who opposed it.

The Senate’s Standing Committee on Transportation and Communication recommended the Liberal government scrap Bill C-48, which would forbid ships carrying more than 12,500 tonnes of crude oil from loading or unloading between the northern tip of Vancouver Island and the Alaska border.

Alberta Senator Doug Black says it is a good day for Alberta and Canada.

“This bill intended to further limit the ability to produce product from the oilsands and it’s wrong for Alberta, it’s wrong for Canada and it needs to be stopped and I’m very grateful that the senate committee recognized that,” Black says.

READ MORE: Senate committee to hear from new Alberta premier on oil tanker ban bill

Black points out however, that this decision does not mean the bill is dead as it needs approval from the entire Senate.

If the committee’s report is rejected, senators will continue to debate the bill and then vote whether it should advance.

Black says he is hopeful that it will not get to that point.

“But if we do, we will make the same arguments to the full senate that we made to the committee, that this is bad legislation, it is discriminatory. It serves no purpose other than hurting Alberta,” he says.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney is also giving his praise to the recommendation, calling it a victory for common sense and economic growth.

Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley, who lobbied against the bill when in government, is also glad that the recommendations have come forward.

READ MORE: Alberta’s Notley urges senators to toss tanker ban bill ‘in the garbage’