Trudeau’s Bill C-48 another step in phasing out the oil sands
May 7, 2018
Another week, another arbitrary Trudeau energy policy that just does not make sense. This time it’s Bill C-48, The Oil Tanker Moratorium Act which seeks to ban oil tanker traffic on the North Coast of British Columbia.
Trudeau’s proposed moratorium would be in effect from the Canada-Alaska border to the Northern tip of Vancouver Island and would prohibit oil tankers carrying crude oil from stopping, loading and unloading at ports or marine installations in the moratorium area. The curious part of this Bill is that it only affects the Northern BC coast. It’s another example of Justin Trudeau trying to have his cake and eat it too when it comes to energy and the environment.
If C-48 was really about protecting the environment from energy development, perhaps it would also target natural gas exports (which the Bill conspicuously does not do) and ban all tankers, even those carrying less than 12,500 metric tonnes of crude (which are explicitly exempted).
If it were truly about protecting the environment from tanker traffic, the Bill would probably include the entire BC coast, the East coast, the St. Lawrence Seaway and maybe even the Great Lakes region. Suspiciously, the moratorium area outlined by the Liberals ends just north of Vancouver and would only primarily affect any pipeline development ending in the Prince Rupert/Kitimat area.
The intent of the Bill is not really the environment, it’s about getting votes and is just another step in phasing out the oil sands. What C-48 essentially says is that Venezuelan oil in Quebec is ok, that Saudi Arabian oil on the East Coast is ok and that Canadian oil in Vancouver is ok, but not in Northern BC.
Remember, this is Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government that arbitrarily denied approval for the Northern Gateway Pipeline, that let the Energy East Pipeline be defeated by special interest groups in Ontario and Quebec, and that is spectacularly failing at getting the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion project, the one pipeline they have approved, across the finish line. This is the same Liberal government that is forcing a job-killing carbon tax on the provinces, while at the same time repeatedly stating that the Trans Mountain expansion will get built, even if Canadian taxpayers have to pay for it themselves.
The reality is that Bill C-48 is suspiciously similar to NDP MP Nathan Cullen’s private member’s Bill from the last Parliament that sought to also ban tanker traffic along the BC coast. This Bill is undoubtedly about Justin Trudeau wanting to take votes away from the NDP in BC and not really about protecting Canada’s coastlines from tanker traffic.
This should be troubling to Canadians because it shows that Justin Trudeau is willing to risk Canada’s economic security and further damage our investment climate just to win votes. It is also clear that his government hasn’t consulted Western Canadians on this legislation because if they had, there is no way that they could proceed with it in good conscience. Our oil and gas sector in Saskatchewan and Alberta only continues to suffer under this Prime Minister.
It’s about time that the Liberals start governing for all Canadians and not just the votes they hope to win in the next election.