Alberta Premier Rachel Notley (Black Press files)

Trans Mountain court action continues, John Horgan says

Federal takeover doesn’t change oil spill risk to B.C. coast

The B.C. government is carrying on with its reference case against the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, Premier John Horgan told Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in an early-morning phone call Tuesday.

Horgan told reporters in Victoria the federal government’s takeover of the project changes the legal situation, but his contentious legal action isn’t aimed at any specific project. It’s about the province’s jurisdiction to regulate bitumen transport by pipeline, rail or road and B.C. lawyers have advised that it can proceed, he said.

The federal takeover of the existing line makes the Trudeau government “totally accountable” for risks of a tanker spill, and “allows me to have more candid conversations with the owners of the pipeline,” Horgan said.

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson said taxpayers will be the owners of the project.

“John Horgan picked a fight with Alberta and provoked a constitutional crisis with Ottawa over this project and this is now the embarrassing result,” Wilkinson said. “Horgan and the NDP will continue to play politics with British Columbia’s future, and this time it will cost us billions.”

Alberta is putting up to $2 billion towards construction of the project, and work is underway to get construction going, Premier Rachel Notley said Tuesday.

Notley held a jubilant news conference in front of the legislature in Edmonton after the federal government announced it is buying the 65-year-old oil pipeline from Alberta to the B.C. coast.

“It’s very possible we might not have to spend a cent of it,” Notley said of the financial backing, which would be payable only when oil begins to flow from the twinned pipeline. Any money put toward construction would be converted into an equity stake in the federal project, she said.

Notley said the federal takeover gives the project “federal Crown immunity,” which casts doubt on B.C.’s reference case to test the province’s jurisdiction.

Just Posted

BC Ferries confirms Northern Sea Wolf ready for summer season

The plan is to have the Northern Sea Wolf assume the mid-coast service as of May 18

Historic building in Alexis Creek destroyed by fire overnight

“If it hadn’t been a heavy rain last night we could have lost many houses in the area”

Gas prices spike in northern B.C. ahead of the long weekend

Fuel went up 17 cents overnight in Prince Rupert

OP-ED: Striking a balance with the oil tanker moratorium

Dennis Patterson, Senator for Nunavut, on protecting Canada’s environment and economy with Bill C-48

‘No answers:’ Canadians react to Sri Lanka bombings that killed hundreds

The co-ordinated bomb attacks killed at least 207 people and injured 450 more on Easter Sunday

RCMP confirm witnesses say body found at Kelowna’s Gyro Beach

Police tape is blocking part of the beach and several RCMP officers are on scene.

B.C. fire department rescues kittens

Enderby homeowner not aware kittens in wood pile near garbage pile fire that got out of hand

QUIZ: How much do you know about Easter?

Take this short quiz and put your knowledge to the test

B.C. VIEWS: NDP’s lawyer show is turning into a horror movie

Court actions pile up over pipelines, car insurance, care aides

Global Affairs warns Canadians in Sri Lanka there could be more attacks

A series of bomb blasts killed at least 207 people and injured hundreds more

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

Most Read