Published: Thu, May 31, 2018
Sci-tech | By Carrie Guzman

Canada to Buy Kinder Morgan Pipeline for $3.5 Billion

Canada to Buy Kinder Morgan Pipeline for $3.5 Billion

Finance Minister Bill Morneau said the decision was exceptional and that the rule of law needs to be seen as a business advantage to investing in Canada.

Employees at Evraz Steel in Regina are watching the latest developments surrounding the Trans Mountain pipeline project with intrigue. The pipeline would see bitumen from Alberta shipped to the Westridge marine terminal in Burnaby, B.C.

In 2007, Kinder Morgan reported to the National Energy Board that it valued the Trans Mountain pipeline system at $550 million. Finance Minister Bill Morneau told media that the next step will be to sell it off to the highest bidder once market conditions allow. He insists there is no contradiction between fighting for the environment and defending Canada's oil industry and the economic benefits it brings.

"This is a continued betrayal of promises made to us by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau", said Khelsilem, an elected councillor and spokesman for the nation, in a statement.

While Masson believes the federal government can recoup its money in a sale after the expanded pipeline is operational, advocacy groups on both sides of the political spectrum are skeptical the deal is financially prudent. The case was heard by the Federal Court of Appeal, which is expected to render a decision in June. Morneau had said the federal government would cover any cost overruns caused by B.C.'s actions, but the company felt that wasn't enough.

Kean said the Canadian government would help search for an alternative buyer.

That decision prompted the Alberta government to call an emergency cabinet meeting to come up with a response.

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley cheered the news on Twitter. We have met the deadline, " she tweeted.

Notley added: "This is the most certainty this project has ever had". While we are going to save the vital pipeline and the thousands of jobs that come with it, today's decision highlights how much damage has been done to our worldwide reputation.

Premier Scott Moe has been a vocal backer of the project.

"Because the crisis has passed, at least for now..."

The move is a calculated political risk for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who has embraced the Paris environmental accord and the need for Canada to fight climate change.

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"We still have it".

"It does change it from a federally approved project to a federally undertaken project, but the reference case ... did not speak to a specific project", he explained.

Ottawa could also deploy the police and troops to maintain a barrier between protesters and construction workers.

It's possible they do mesh, Kinley said, but it's up to the government to explain how Trans Mountain squares with a commitment to reduce emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.

Canada will also offer federal loan guarantees to ensure construction continues through the 2018 season as part of the deal with the company.

"Typically in an infrastructure project you have one government involved, but here you got Alberta, B.C., you got the feds", de Bever said. Manufacturing shut down two weeks ago over uncertainty about the pipeline's future, but now workers are optimistic that the federal government will honour the contract. Then sand was thrown in the gears when John Horgan was elected NDP premier of B.C.

Soon after the announcement, a rally was planned for Vancouver to express the pipeline opponents' opposition. "It polarized us. That is not who we are", Carr told the news conference.

"For years and years and years, we've had pipelines built across Canada and the United States".

At that time, Kinder Morgan Canada was expecting to begin construction on the expansion in September 2017 and for it to be operational by late 2019.

Aaron Wudrick, federal director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, admits Ottawa is trying to make lemonade from lemons after Kinder Morgan balked last month at proceeding with the project, but he worries the same hurdles remain now for the federal government.

But the story gets worse for Canadian taxpayers.

A Finance Department official says that as a Crown project in the national interest, Canada has special allowances to proceed that may not be available to a private-sector company. He promised that this project could not go through unless it was done through a vigorous review, which he broke'.

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