Alberta to restrict oil, gas to British Columbia in Canada pipeline row

New law would allow Alberta to restrict flow of oil and gas

Alberta to restrict oil, gas to British Columbia in Canada pipeline row

Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe said Tuesday his province will support Alberta in the fight over the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion by introducing its own legislation on oil exports.

The Kinder Morgan pipeline feeds British Columbia refineries, such as the 55,000 b/d Parkland facility in the Lower Midland area. Moe said he wants the Saskatchewan legislation passed shortly so it can work in tandem with Alberta's proposed bill.

Bill 12, titled Preserving Canada's Economic Prosperity Act, provides Albert retaliatory moves against delaying the project by pincreasing prices and limiting shipping of other energy and products. Breaching the licence requirements would bring a fine of $10 million a day.

The Puget Sound pipeline delivers Canadian crude from the Trans Mountain system to Phillips 66's 101,000 b/d Ferndale refinery and Andeavor's 120,000 b/d Anacortes refinery. An expansion to the West Coast has been approved by the federal government, but fighting it in the courts.

"We are very committed to putting pressure on come around and focus on what this pipeline actually means".

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Asked about whether or not the law he's expected to introduce "within days" would be in violation of the law, Moe said the province had a legal opinion and "holding up the construction of this pipeline, it's in violation of the law".

While many British Columbians have become nervous that Alberta's law would drive up already painfully steep gas prices, Bakan said if it's ever passed, the legislation is nearly certain to be challenged in court.

"We already have a trade war underway in terms of the obstructionist approach [] taking to Kinder Morgan and the delays we've encountered in terms of Keystone XL", Wilson said.

"We're going to be studying the bill very carefully to make sure this is not a bill that is created to punish British Columbians as it was advertised in the lead-up to its introduction to the House because such a bill would obviously be illegal and unconstitutional and we would take every step available to British Columbia to reign in that illegal and unconstitutional conduct", said B.C. Attorney General David Eby.

Alberta ships more of those products to B.C. than Saskatchewan does, but Moe is aiming to ensure his province won't be "filling up the taps" if they are left empty by Alberta.

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Notley suggested May 31 will be key if the viability of the pipeline project is still in question.

Depending on how far Alberta is willing to go, McTeague says rationing of diesel and jet fuel may be considered to limit damage to the BC economy. "This is a federal issue and we should be demanding leadership from the federal government", Meili said.

He called on the federal government to restrict infrastructure to a means to get the pipeline built, noting Ottawa withheld funding to Saskatchewan over its continued opposition to a carbon tax. While halting oil shipments to B.C. would present the industry with some short-term challenges, the legislation appears to be created to minimize the impact to Alberta's energy producers, he said.

Both Notley and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have announced they will provide Kinder Morgan with financial assurances to offset potential losses from B.C.'s continued opposition in a move that has stirred up controversy on both sides of the debate.

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