Energy splits Canadian ministers’ meeting

Political tension over energy and the environment escalated in Canada on July 19 when officials of three provinces refused to endorse the federal government’s communique on the 2019 Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference.

Political tension over energy and the environment escalated in Canada on July 19 when officials of three provinces refused to endorse the federal government’s communique on the 2019 Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference (EMMC).

In a press statement, the energy ministers of Alberta, Ontario, and Saskatchewan said they “were profoundly disappointed with the 2019 EMMC discussions and communique, as they did not adequately address the challenges and concerns raised by each province over the past several months.”

The statement slammed “superficial discussion about competitiveness, market access, the devastating economic effects of the Impact Assessment Act (Bill C-69) and Oil Tanker Moratorium Act (Bill C-48), the continued federal encroachment into provincial jurisdiction on natural resources, and no real solution to carbon emissions beyond taxing hard-working families and businesses.”

Bill C-69 changes federal environmental oversight in ways the oil and gas industry fears will discourage project approvals. Bill C-48 bans all but the smallest oil tankers in northern British Columbia ports.

The EMMC was held July 15-17 in Cranbrook, BC.

The Natural Resources Canada communique rejected by the three provinces said the EMMC ended “with a shared vision aimed at leveraging Canada’s natural resource advantage to attract investment and create jobs for Canadians, develop new natural resource products, and expand global market access.”

It said, “Ministers acknowledged the need for jurisdictions to work together to get Canada’s resources to market while enhancing environmental sustainability, improving Canadian competitiveness through timely, predictable, and transparent regulatory processes, and securing public trust.”

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