Proposed pipeline regulations shouldn’t start a ‘trade war:’ B.C. premier

Horgan has spoken with both Trudeau and Notley in recent days to reiterate his government’s position

B.C.’s premier says his government is trying to protect the province, not be provocative, over a proposed ban on an increase of diluted bitumen shipped from the west coast.

John Horgan said Friday that his government’s announcement earlier this week is cautionary and designed to make sure B.C. doesn’t suffer in the event of a catastrophic spill.

“I did not set out to be provocative,” he said at a news conference. ”In fact, I would suggest that a press release saying we’re going to have a consultation should not be the foundation of a trade war between good friends.”

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley suspended talks Thursday on buying B.C. electricity, and has described the proposal as an unconstitutional attempt to stop Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline.

The expansion project would triple capacity along the pipeline between Edmonton and Burnaby, B.C., and increase tanker traffic off the coast seven fold.

READ MORE: Province takes aim at Trans Mountain pipeline with proposed bitumen restrictions

READ MORE: ‘That pipeline is going to get built:’ Trudeau dismisses B.C.’s Trans Mountain move

Ottawa has already approved the expansion and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised again on Friday that Trans Mountain will go ahead, saying it’s an important part of Canada’s energy plans.

Horgan said he’s spoken with both Trudeau and Notley in recent days to reiterate his government’s position that expanding the pipeline would pose a significant threat to B.C.’s economy and environment.

The province is already challenging the project in Federal Court, arguing that B.C. was not adequately consulted.

The government has sought legal advice on the new proposed regulations, but that advice is confidential, Horgan said.

Talking to residents is well within the province’s rights, he added.

“We are not putting in place regulations today, we are not putting in regulations at the end of the month. We are putting in place a consultation and an intentions paper so that the public has an understanding of the potential impact of a catastrophic spill within British Columbia.”

B.C. is not trying to take on the rest of the country with the proposed rules, Horgan said, but does want to be an equal partner in the federation.

He noted that there are many other issues where he agrees with Notley and Trudeau, and hopes they can move forward on those.

“I think there’s great potential for positive working relationships on a number of fronts and I prefer to focus on those,” he said.

With files from Ashley Wadhwani, Black Press

Gemma Karstens-Smith, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Missing teen reportedly spotted in Northwest

Police, family greatly concerned over disappearance of Colten Therrin Fleury

Police, Conservation see busy long weekend

Arrests, tickets and warnings follow joint-enforcement initiative

Injury forces end to hiker’s Pacific Crest Trail attempt

Due home this week, Janine Wilson still determined to finish challenge in the future

Vancouver choir to perform joint-concert with two local ensembles

Concert will take place on Saturday, May 26 at the Knox United Church

Construction of LNG Canada plant still on hold

Construction will only begin following a positive final investment decision

Syrian refugee fathers thriving at Skeena Sawmills in Terrace

With work at the mill, the Al Kadro family bought a home and is settling into the local community

B.C. RCMP swoop in to save injured eagle

An eagle with a broken wing now in a recovery facility after RCMP rescue near Bella Coola

Bug spray 101: Health Canada wants you to stay bite free

Health Canada is reminding Canadians to use bug spray and other insect repellents safely

Unions reject CP Rail contract offers

Both meeting Friday to determine next steps; 72 hours notice required before strike action.

B.C. jewellers warn public about fake gold scam

‘They are playing on people’s sympathy and their greed’

Former B.C. premier says pot industry about to enter Wild West

Mike Harcourt says Canada is about to enter a new gold rush with many dreaming of striking it rich

Hunt continues for two suspects in Ontario restaurant explosion

The explosion left 15 people injured, but all victims have now been released from hospital

B.C. teacher charged with sexual offences involving two teens

Henry Kang, 50, of Abbotsford charged with two counts each sex assault and sexual exploitation

Toronto Raptors star to hold basketball camp in B.C.

DeMar DeRozan is hosting a four-day camp for players aged 6-16 at the University of Victoria

Most Read