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

Greyhound cleared to end routes in northern B.C., Vancouver Island

Company says nine routes have dropped 30% in ridership in last five years

BC Budget’s Top 10 promises the North Coast will care about

BC Ferry fare reductions, Indigenous language investments, rent support for seniors

B.C. BUDGET: Fare freeze, free travel for seniors on BC Ferries

A complete fare freeze will be put into place on major routes, and fares will be rolled back on smaller routes by 15 per cent

BC BUDGET: New spaces a step to universal child care

Fees reduced for licensed daycare operators

BC BUDGET: NDP cracks down on speculators, hidden ownership

Foreign buyers’ tax extended to Fraser Valley, Okanagan, Vancouver Island

Therapy dogs make appearance at B.C. Games

The St. John’s Ambulance therapy dog program launches a pilot project at the 2018 Kamloops B.C. Winter Games

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Sticking the landing at the B.C. Games

Gymnasts talk competition, B.C. Winter Games, and teamwork in Kamloops

$153M in federal cash to fund child care, education training in B.C.

Bilateral agreement will create 1,370 new infant and toddler spaces

A B.C. woman talks her life in the sex trade

A view into the life from one Kelowna prostitute and the issues it can cause for women

Twitter feed prays for — instead of preying on — B.C. MLAs

Non-partisan Christian group wants to support politicians through personalized prayer

Mills Memorial Hospital financing formula released

Regional taxpayers to pay $113.7 million for new facility.

Hundreds march for justice in death of Winnipeg teen

Tina Fontaine was pulled from a river in 2014, her body wrapped in a blanket and weighed down by rocks

Most Read