OTTAWA – In light of TransCanada’s decision to go ahead with its Energy East pipeline, New Democrats are calling on the Conservatives to halt their attacks on environmental protection and re-establish a credible review process.
“As the Conservatives are discovering with Keystone, there is no shortcut to public approval,” said NDP Energy Critic Peter Julian (Burnaby—New Westminster). “If TransCanada wants the social license to move forward with this pipeline, Canadians will need to have confidence that the project is sustainable and the approval process is fair and open.”
Julian noted that New Democrats have been clear that moving Western Canadian oil east makes good economic sense—if environmental and public concerns are satisfied during a thorough review, and if pipeline safety is substantially improved.
“There’s no doubt that moving oil west to east can be a win-win,” Julian said. “It can help provinces in the west increase revenue from their resources, protect and promote more value-added jobs and could mean a better price for consumers in Eastern Canada.”
But Julian cautioned that the Harper government’s reckless stripping of environmental protection is putting public support for resource projects like Energy East at risk.
“We will continue to push for meaningful public consultation and much stronger environmental and safety oversight for resource development,” Julian said. “It’s right for our communities, for our industry, and for Canadians.”