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November 9, 2018

United Conservatives respond to Keystone XL decision

The decision by a Montana federal judge to block TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline, a much-needed pipeline to get resources to market, is clearly the result of a judge playing politics and the decision needs to be appealed, Alberta’s United Conservatives said today.

“The latest ruling on Keystone XL is a setback to be sure, but I fully expect that the decision will be appealed to a higher court that will actually follow the law. I’m also encouraged that TransCanada has indicated that they remain committed to the project,” said United Conservative leader Jason Kenney. “As someone that has unequivocally supported Keystone XL from day one, we know that this project is far too important to both Canada and the United States to abandon.”

Alberta’s now-Premier Notley openly opposed Keystone XL while in opposition [1]. She also said that there was “no realistic objective” in lobbying Washington in support of Keystone [2]. The federal NDP also remains opposed to the project – in fact, their former leader Thomas Mulcair actively lobbied against the project in a visit to Washington DC [3]. It’s clear that there is only one party that is clear and consistent in supporting much-needed pipelines for Alberta’s resources.

The US State Department under then-President Obama reviewed the issues the judge listed twice, and recommended approval. In fact, the State Department found that Keystone XL would in fact reduce CO2 emissions compared to alternative rail shipments. Then-President Obama ignored his own State Department’s advice by vetoing Keystone XL in November 2015.

“This ruling is a reminder of the foolishness of abandoning other viable pipeline projects, including both Northern Gateway and Energy East,” said Prasad Panda, United Conservative Energy Critic and MLA for Calgary-Foothills. “We cannot afford to put all our eggs in one basket. To the contrary, we should be encouraging pipelines in multiple directions.”

In their recent fiscal plan, the Alberta NDP government based their recent so-called ‘Path to Balance’ on revenues from the Trans Mountain Expansion and Keystone XL pipelines, as well as a carbon tax raised to $50/tonne.

[1] “We’re against it.” (Rachel Notley, CBC Radio, May 2, 2015)

[2] Toronto Star, May 7, 2015

[3] CTV News, March 16, 2013