Vaughn Palmer: Lawyers to strike it rich in Kinder Morgan pipeline fight

VICTORIA — Premier John Horgan at first reacted cautiously Monday to news of Alberta’s just-tabled legislation to restrict the flow of its petroleum resource beyond provincial borders.

“I have not seen the legislation the member refers to,” Horgan responded to the Opposition B.C. Liberals. “I look forward to reading it.”

But toward the end of question period he toughened his response considerably to the unseen bill.

“It is critically important that the government of Alberta act in a lawful manner,” lectured Horgan. “They chose not to when they banned B.C. wine imports back in February. We took them to task with respect to that. They withdrew that illegal action.”

Never mind that the wine boycott was a reaction to a Horgan government move to regulate the movement of bitumen through B.C., a threat that Alberta regarded as no less illegal.

“I’m very certain, once we review the legislation,” continued Horgan, referring to Alberta’s Preserving Canada’s Economic Prosperity Act (a pompous title if ever there was one) “we’ll find again that they are violating legal rules with respect to restricting access.”

Why is it OK for B.C. to contemplate restricting movement of Alberta bitumen but not OK for the province that actually produces the stuff to restrict movement of its oil, gasoline and natural gas?

Well, explained Horgan, the problem was playing favourites: “Unless they choose to reduce access to Saskatchewan and Manitoba and Ontario as well.”

Outside the house, the New Democrats delegated Attorney-General David Eby to give a more detailed response.

“We have seen over the past several weeks statements from Alberta ministers and the premier (Rachel Notley) herself that they were going to introduce a bill to, quote, punish, end quote, by restricting the flow of oil and gas to our province,” Eby told reporters, airing suspicions that it was retaliation for B.C. targeting bitumen.

“We know, as …read more

Source:: Vancouver Sun

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