Federal Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr continued his pipeline sales mission in Alberta Thursday, addressing the Alberta Enterprise Group in Edmonton.
The federal government approved the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain and Enbridge Line 3 pipelines Tuesday.
Watch below: Alberta’s embattled oil industry got some good news from Ottawa Tuesday. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has given the green light to two major pipeline expansion projects.Tom Vernon reports.
Carr said the announcement brings new hope to the thousands of Albertans who work in the energy sector.
“We must never lose sight of why we’re doing it, what it’s all about: it’s about people, their families, their livelihoods, their identity, and for a long in Alberta too many people have suffered because of the loss of opportunity for them and their families,” Carr said.
“We want to acknowledge that that is a principle motivation of the decisions we have announced and it will be implemented as we move forward.”
Carr noted the climate plan put forward by Alberta Premier Rachel Notley provided the building blocks for the pipeline projects.
The minister said the approval of the pipelines adheres to the federal government’s mandate to create middle class jobs while protecting the environment.
“Fulfilling the mandate means listening to Canadians, it means taking climate change seriously, it means encouraging economic growth and at its core it means that the environment and the economy are not competing interests or values, they are complimentary elements in a single engine of innovation.”
Carr also noted Canada should use its bountiful resources to help pay for the transition to a lower-carbon economy and that projects like the Trans Mountain and Enbridge Lines can’t pit one region of the country against another.
“We know that these opinions are firmly held, that people believe that they are right and they’re prepared to express their opinions forcefully, powerfully, but ultimately we can never make a decision based on a regional point of view,” Carr said.
“It is Canada’s interest, it is a national point of view that drives the decisions we make.”
Watch below: Federal Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr stopped by Global Edmonton on Thursday for a one-on-one interview with Gord Steinke just two days after his government approved two major pipeline projects.
Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson echoed some of the minister’s thoughts, saying pipeline projects are good for treasuries across Canada and will fund a transition to a low-carbon economy.
“We make it needlessly harder for ourselves to achieve that lower carbon future if we tie one hand behind our backs when it comes to energy infrastructure,” Iveson said.
Iveson added there is a fundamental misunderstanding about how committed Albertans are to environmental stewardship.
The $6.8-billion Trans Mountain expansion would see the capacity of a pipeline that runs from the Edmonton area to Burnaby, B.C., nearly triple, to 890,000 barrels per day.
The Line 3 replacement project would see the pipeline roughly double its current output to 760,000 barrels per day.
The federal government rejected Northern Gateway which would have shipped up to 525,000 barrels of crude per day from the Edmonton area to Kitimat, B.C., for export to Asian markets.
Carr said the decision to halt that project demonstrates the government’s commitment to environmental stewardship and and respecting cultural practices of indigenous people.
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