In the latest back-and-forth development between BC and Alberta over the Kinder Morgan Pipeline expansion, Alberta is being sued by the BC government after legislation was passed in Alberta last week that would give the province the ability to shut off its oil supply to BC.
On Tuesday, BC Attorney General David Eby said the government is bringing the action based on the public interest of British Columbians and challenging the constitutionality of Alberta’s bill – known as Bill 12: Preserving Canada’s Economic Prosperity Act.
According to the statement of claim, BC is bringing the action against Alberta for “declaratory relief in relation to the unconstitutionality of the Preserving Canada’s Economic Prosperity Act.”
In filing the claim, Eby said it came about after “we repeatedly called on Alberta not to move forward with blatantly unconstitutional legislation.”
The reason for this latest move by his government, he said, is to prepare for the possibility of the Alberta government’s potentially “reckless” action of actually using the bill.
And although he said he doesn’t believe at this point that Alberta would put Bill C12 into practice, he said BC would file an injunction “right away” if they did.
He added that constitutionally, provincial governments “can’t use trade policy to punish one another.”
Asked whether his government was delaying the timeline for the approval process of the project, Eby also noted his government has “granted permits at the same pace as the previous government.”
The Alberta government has been putting pressure on BC for the past few months, instituting a boycott on BC wines, raising pro-pipeline billboards in BC, and, most recently, passing legislation that would cut off BC’s supply of Alberta oil.
Kinder Morgan will make its decision on Thursday, May 31 to either go forward with the project or pull out completely.
More to come…