Trans Mountain Pipeline Project Act

An Act to declare the Trans Mountain Pipeline Project and related works to be for the general advantage of Canada

This bill was last introduced in the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session, which ended in September 2019.


Defeated, as of Oct. 24, 2018
(This bill did not become law.)


This is from the published bill. The Library of Parliament often publishes better independent summaries.

This enactment declares the Trans Mountain Pipeline Project and related works to be works for the general advantage of Canada.


All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, an excellent resource from the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.


Oct. 24, 2018 Failed 2nd reading of Bill S-245, An Act to declare the Trans Mountain Pipeline Project and related works to be for the general advantage of Canada

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 1:30 p.m.
See context


Shannon Stubbs Conservative Lakeland, AB

moved that Bill S-245, An Act to declare the Trans Mountain Pipeline Project and related works to be for the general advantage of Canada, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

Mr. Speaker, it is with great urgency for Canada that I speak today in support of Bill S-245, the Trans Mountain pipeline project act. Thousands of workers and their families from the construction, steel fabrication and manufacturing, and oil and gas sectors want the Liberals to take meaningful action to get their jobs back.

As a result of the Liberals' failure to enforce federal jurisdiction since their approval of the Trans Mountain expansion nearly two years ago and their failure in the review before that, as ruled by the Federal Court of Appeal on August 30, more than 2,000 workers were laid off. Another 5,000 more were counting on jobs about to begin in the next couple of months and several thousand expected jobs from the pipeline in the next couple of years. All of these families are now wondering about their future.

That is why I thank Senator Doug Black for introducing the bill in the other place and the 78% of senators from all regions in Canada who supported it. Getting the Trans Mountain expansion built is in the best interests of all Canadians. It would provide high-paying jobs now when Canadians need them more than ever and it would create and sustain thousands of jobs in many different sectors across Canada long into the future.

It would generate revenue, skills training and jobs in 43 indigenous communities. It would provide billions of dollars in new tax revenues to all levels of government in B.C. and Alberta, and pay for health care, pensions, schools, bridges and roads across Canada. It would move the most responsibly produced oil in the world, Canadian oil, to markets in the U.S. and the Asia Pacific.

Today, the Trans Mountain expansion is stopped. It is the culmination of an economic, investment, regulatory, jurisdictional and interprovincial crisis of confidence in Canada that has been escalating for years, perpetuated by the Liberals.

Failure is not an option. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce president Perrin Beatty said failure would send “a profoundly negative message to investors both here at home and around the world about Canada's regulatory system and our ability to get things done”.

Uncertainty caused by anti-energy policies and messages from the Liberals has already done so much damage, caused so many job losses and driven billions out of Canada. Every day of delay on the Trans Mountain expansion makes it worse. That is why all members of Parliament should support the bill.

For months, Liberals repeated they would not accept undue or “unnecessary delays” without ever defining them, that “no province can impinge on the national interest”, but never actually did anything; that “we are considering all options” which is, mind boggling, and what they are still saying, the pipeline “will be built”, but construction never actually started, despite the photo ops and press conferences.

Senator Black tabled the bill on February 15. On April 8, Kinder Morgan halted work and set a deadline for clear assurances from the Liberals that ongoing roadblocks and delays would be removed so it could proceed. On April 10, cabinet had an emergency meeting, after which ministers gave media 97 seconds of platitudes and left.

On April 16 the Prime Minister and other ministers were widely quoted saying the Liberals would introduce legislation imminently to “reassert and reinforce” federal authority over the Trans Mountain expansion. The Prime Minister failed to deliver the legislation he promised and this week he mocked the idea.

On May 22, a week before Kinder Morgan's deadline, the Senate passed Bill S-245. Between May 22 and May 31 the Bloc, the NDP and then the Liberals denied my three separate asks to get unanimous consent to expedite this bill for debate in the House so MPs could give the certainty requested by Kinder Morgan and they denied it yet again today.

Then the Liberals announced the federal government would purchase the Trans Mountain pipeline and the Minister of Finance said, “If Kinder Morgan is not interested in building the project, we think plenty of investors would be interested in taking on this project”. That was shocking in itself since Kinder Morgan had already worked for years to prepare for its $7.4-billion investment and had already spent hundreds of millions, while meeting hundreds of conditions and fighting to build it for 17 months since the Liberals' official approval; manifestly not a lack of interest.

Then, of course, the Finance Minister failed to find a single other investor or buyer, while he also promised “to guarantee the summer construction season for the workers who are counting on it, and to ensure the project is built to completion in a timely fashion”.

On July 31, the current Minister of Natural Resources announced the start of construction at a press conference where the head of the now government-owned Trans Mountain Corporation clarified immediately that new pipeline would not actually start getting in the ground until “early next year”. Then, on August 30, the day the $4.5-billion purchase was completed, which divested Kinder Morgan from Canada, the Federal Court of Appeal ruled that the Liberals had failed to adequately consult first nations in the process they initiated, oversaw and managed, during their review of Trans Mountain's regulatory application in 2016, before they approved it, which they have assured Canadians all along would ensure the Trans Mountain expansion could be built.

As always, the Liberals are blaming everyone and everything else for all their failures.

The court decision is clear, and the context is important. In June 2014, the Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling on the duty to consult indigenous people on project development.

In June 2016, three months after the Liberals were elected, the approval of northern gateway was overturned by the Federal Court of Appeal. However, instead of trying to fulfill the measures in the court ruling through new consultations with first nations, especially in light of the 31 indigenous agreements supporting northern gateway worth $2 billion at stake, to enable that major, crucial export infrastructure to proceed, and to get it right for future proposals, the Prime Minister vetoed it outright and completely.

For the Trans Mountain expansion application, which along with all others had been frozen by the Liberals since January, the Minister of Natural Resources appointed a three member ministerial panel to consult with first nations on May 27, 2016, which reported back in November 2016, and the federal cabinet approved the Trans Mountain expansion in the national interest on the 30th of that month.

When multiple legal challenges and protests started immediately, the Liberals assured all Canadians that their review and approval would withstand a court challenge and they specifically cited the ruling on northern gateway as the impetus for their process that they claimed would guarantee the Trans Mountain expansion would proceed.

However, the Federal Court of Appeal said the Liberals' consultation with first nations on Trans Mountain between May and November 2016 “fell well short of the minimum requirements”. It confirms a total failure of meaningful two-way engagement while misleading participants and a failure to attempt accommodation by the Liberals with first nations. It is just the latest in a long pattern of the Liberals saying one thing and doing another.

The other major part of the ruling is the consideration of the impact of tanker traffic on orca whales. What is galling is the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans said he would come back to cabinet “with precise regulatory elements that will ensure that we have mitigated the effect of the noise, and things like access to prey—chinook management—and (ensure) land-based pollutants that contaminate certain bodies of water in which these whales are resident are reduced and/or eliminated”. This was at the same time as the Liberal approval of Trans Mountain.

The minister then failed to introduce any of it, denying a key defence for the Liberals' approval, because of yet another failure. The minister should have been on top of it and prepared, because the fact is the risk is not exclusive to Trans Mountain. He, himself, on September 12, said:

You have to put this in context. The noise from a container ship is no different than the noise from an oil tanker. And there are between 3,000 and 3,500 container ships that come into the Port of Vancouver. There are thousands of BC Ferries, and there are tens of thousands of recreational boaters out there. So if you are going to save these whales, the mitigation has to be much broader than a few more oil tankers. It has to relate to how we're managing shipping generally.

That is what the minister said, and he failed to do anything about it.

As of today, the Liberals have still failed to provide a comprehensive plan and even blocked the mutual requests of Conservative and NDP MPs for emergency meetings of both the natural resources and indigenous and northern affairs committees for ministers to explain their failures on the Trans Mountain review, to answer for the 4.5 billion tax dollars they spent, and to account to the pipeline's owners—all Canadians—their next steps to get the expansion back on track.

Western Canadians are angry, frustrated, and they feel betrayed by the Liberals. The majority of Canadians across the country who resoundingly support the Trans Mountain expansion are losing hope. It is no wonder why, when the Prime Minister said that Canada should phase out the oil sands and that he regrets Canada cannot get off oil tomorrow, and he defended tax dollars going to summer jobs explicitly for activists to stop the Kinder Morgan pipeline and tanker project.

What is especially disappointing is the way the Prime Minister and the Liberals' failures are sacrificing the best and national interests of Canadians to obstructionist activities initiated and funded to serve the national and competitive ambitions of other countries and Canada's competitors.

The Financial Post, the Vancouver Sun, The Globe and Mail, and multiple other media outlets have reported on a leaked document dubbed the Kinder Morgan “Action Hive Proposal”, penned by, a foreign anti-oil protest group, which outlines a strategy by an anti-energy coalition to block the Trans Mountain expansion.

The Financial Post revealed that Tides Canada “has granted $40 million to 100 Canadian anti-pipeline organizations”, which in turn fight to stop Canadian energy development and access to export markets.

In 2016, Tides Canada quietly shut down its international donation matching system that allowed U.S. donors to donate to the Canadian foundation but still receive a tax receipt for the U.S. foundation.

On September 12, it was reported that since 2014, the City of Burnaby spent $1.12 million in legal costs to fight the Trans Mountain expansion.

The only objective of these efforts is to stop the pipeline altogether through “death by delay”, using every tool in their tool box, as they said they would. It is not to achieve a reasonable, evidence-based conclusion in the broad best interests of all Canadians, and nothing will ever earn a so-called "social license" from it. This is why every MP needs to vote for this legislation, for Canada.

The purpose of Bill S-245 is to declare the Trans Mountain pipeline project and all related works to be for the general advantage of Canada, a declaratory power that has been used more than 450 times before to enable major approved infrastructure like bridges, railways and electricity. Once the power is used and affirmed by Parliament, all secondary works and everything related to the construction of the pipeline, including all local roads, bridges, power connections, the terminal and its ongoing operation and maintenance, will be in federal jurisdiction. This is important, given existing threats to attempt to restrict the volume in the expansion even if it ever gets built.

This is an important preventative measure. The City of Burnaby said that there was still possible challenges going ahead. The B.C. NDP talks about attempting to restrict that flow for future B.C. governments. Therefore, the bill would mitigate future obstructionist attempts by other levels of governments and clarify challenges and disagreements over jurisdiction, providing certainty that there would be no further successful impediments to the project's completion.

It would also give a strong signal to the private sector that Canada would enforce the division of powers, jurisdictional rights and responsibilities, and stand up for Canada's national interest with real action to give certainty that when an approval and permits were granted in Canada it actually would mean something.

Some have questioned the need for this bill and said that Trans Mountain is already federal jurisdiction. As Senator Black made clear in his statements, in order to utilize the provisions that would place all of Trans Mountain's secondary works under federal jurisdiction, there must be an explicit declaration. It cannot simply be implied that a work is for the general advantage of Canada.

This has been done in legislation four times: the Detroit River Canadian Bridge Company Act of 1928; the Hudson Bay Mining declaration of 1947; the Quebec North Shore and Labrador Railway of 1947; and an act respecting CN Rail, which provided the amalgam of rail companies that formed CN Rail in 1955. In each of those pieces of legislation, there is an express declaration, and these are only four examples, that this work is for the general advantage of Canada. This is why Parliament needs to declare Trans Mountain to be for the general advantage of Canada, to reinforce federal jurisdiction.

The reality is that the Liberals had opportunities to pass this bill quickly this spring to avoid having to spend $4.5 billion on the Trans Mountain pipeline, which will go to build pipelines in the United States. They blocked that at every attempt. They voted against two motions this spring, calling for the Liberals to share their plan for getting Trans Mountain built. Most recently, they used their majority to block two parliamentary committees from getting the answers Canadians were demanding.

Since they formed government, the Liberals have failed to give industry the certainty they require to invest in large projects; failed to get construction going on the Trans Mountain expansion this summer, which they promised; failed to find another buyer for the existing Trans Mountain pipeline; failed to consult first nations adequately, leading to months or years of project delays, and putting all the indigenous mutual benefit agreements at risk; and failed to deliver the legislation they promised in the spring to get this pipeline built.

I hear from Canadians that they cannot trust the Liberals to deliver because their actions do not match their words, which is why the Liberals must clearly demonstrate their support for the Trans Mountain expansion today, through action, by passing this legislation. As well, they must tell Canadians the other concrete next steps they will take to get the Trans Mountain expansion built.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 1:45 p.m.
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Winnipeg North Manitoba


Kevin Lamoureux LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada, and particularly the Prime Minister, has been very clear in all regions of our country just how important the Trans Mountain project is to the nation. We have seen forward movement for a long time now. On the one hand, we have New Democrats who believe we do not need the pipelines. I am starting to believe the Conservatives are hoping it does not get off the ground so they can continue to be critical of the government. This seems to be the priority of the Conservatives.

The Prime Minister, ministers, members from Alberta as well as myself have been consistent throughout with respect to that sense of commitment, that we continue to move forward with Trans Mountain, yet the Conservatives were never able to get a pipeline built across the mountains.

Why should Canadians believe the Conservatives could do better than they did in 10 years when they were not able to do anything? We have a Prime Minister and government actually moving forward. If that meant buying, we bought.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 1:45 p.m.
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Shannon Stubbs Conservative Lakeland, AB

Mr. Speaker, they blew $4.5 billion, which was not actually for the purchase of a pipeline, but the purchase of existing assets, and they have no plan for the expansion. Kinder Morgan has said very clearly that it is going to divest all its assets in Canada. What that means is that the Liberals have given $4.5 billion in Canadian tax dollars to the U.S. to build pipelines to compete with Canada as our now major energy competitor, while Canada still relies on the U.S. to be our number one energy customer.

The Liberals have to give up their narrative about the previous government, because all it does is expose their lack of a plan for the future and their inability to answer for failure after failure. Four new pipelines were built under the Conservative government. Two of those achieved improved access, one to the Asia-Pacific, the Anchor Loop by expanding access to the Trans Mountain pipeline, and another, Keystone, by getting oil to the Gulf coast. Billions of new barrels of oil are rolling through pipelines that Conservatives approved. As of right now, the Liberals have built none, and have added zero to Canada's export—

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 1:45 p.m.
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Murray Rankin NDP Victoria, BC

Mr. Speaker, the member has spoken about her desire to get this place to declare this particular pipeline to be to the general advantage of Canada. The Prime Minister has said it will be built. I know the member shares our concern for fairness and justice in this process. I am getting questions from indigenous leaders and coastal communities, like mine in Victoria, who fear the potential environmental consequences of a catastrophic spill of diluted bitumen. I want to know how I can answer them, and perhaps the member can help me, when they ask how the Government of Canada can regulate this, make the final decision, and be the owner of this particular pipeline and pipeline project, and yet treat those people fairly. How can that work?

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 1:45 p.m.
See context


Shannon Stubbs Conservative Lakeland, AB

Mr. Speaker, 43 indigenous communities had secured mutual benefit agreements with the Trans Mountain expansion through years of work. Every indigenous community involved in those agreements supports it and wants to see it go ahead. However, this is yet another failure by the Liberals. On the same day they announced their approval of the Trans Mountain expansion, the fisheries minister at that time said he would return with a comprehensive plan to mitigate risk in the area, to better manage the habitat and feedstock of orca whales and to enhance both prevention and mitigation of additional vessels. The conclusions were clearly that the number of vessels and traffic in that area would continue to increase. There are thousands of vessels there in addition to the one tanker a day that would be added as a result of the Trans Mountain expansion.

The Liberals' other failure, to actually deliver on their promise in addition to their approval of the Trans Mountain expansion, is exactly why constituents like his are questioning this.

It is also helpful to correct the facts on the pipeline. It does not transport raw bitumen. It is actually unique as a pipeline. It is able to transport diluted bitumen instead of crude oil, and a number of other upgraded and refined petroleum products.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 1:50 p.m.
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Randy Boissonnault Liberal Edmonton Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise today to speak to Bill S-245 at second reading and to do so as a proud Alberta MP. I am very proud of my home province and my city of Edmonton. It is a place that values hard work and entrepreneurship. In fact, if people come to my riding of Edmonton Centre, they will see on one of the buildings there a huge mural that says, “Take a risk”. There is nothing more Edmontonian that anyone could possibly do. It is a place that celebrates inclusion, a place that believes everyone should have the opportunity to succeed. The Edmonton Metropolitan Region has brought innovation and resource development to new levels, once thought impossible.

Members may know that I grew up in Morinviille. Close members of my family and dear friends work and have worked in the oil sands, and I know first-hand the importance of resource development to people's lives and livelihoods. I agree categorically with what I hear at doors every week, the keen and deep interest in getting our resources to market and ending the $15-billion-a-year haircut that our resource products get because we have only one customer, the United States.

These are the same reasons that our government approved the Trans Mountain expansion project in the first place. We know that this project holds the potential to create thousands of good middle-class jobs, to strengthen the Canadian economy and generate billions of dollars in new revenues for all orders of government, and to ensure that we get a fair price for one of our country's most valuable resources. It would also open up new opportunities in indigenous communities across B.C. and Alberta, which support the project. There are also 43 indigenous communities that have signed mutual benefit agreements.

It is for all of these reasons and many more that we believe that the TMX project is in Canada's national interest and why we purchased its assets as a sound investment in Canada's future. The existing line will generate $300 million in earnings every year regardless of the expansion. Therefore, when legislation comes before us suggesting that, “the Trans Mountain Pipeline Project and related works [are declared] to be for the general advantage of Canada”, it is hard to disagree. We have said as much repeatedly in every part of the country, and yet it is not enough that the pipeline project expansion proceed. It must proceed in the right way, and that includes fulfilling our government's commitments to protecting the environment and renewing Canada's relationship with indigenous peoples.

The Trans Mountain expansion project is in the situation it is in today because of the failures of the previous Conservative government. We promised legislation that would move Canada forward and brings more, not less, environmental protection and respect for indigenous rights. Have the Conservatives learned that lesson? No. Despite court ruling after court ruling, they still fail to understand the importance of having strong and meaningful frameworks for pipeline approval in place. Ten years of Conservative failure to get our energy to other markets does not serve the Canadian people and does not serve the energy industry.

With Bill C-69, our government will move Canada's projects forward based on doing things the right way, and without cutting corners the way Conservatives did for a decade. When will the Conservatives learn that Canada cannot legislate its way out of its constitutional obligation to consult indigenous peoples and to protect the environment? Only they know the answer to that. On this side, we know that cutting corners has not worked in the past and will not work now or in the future.

The Federal Court of Appeal found that the government's assessment of the project left room for improvement. Potential environmental effects of marine shipping were not properly considered by the NEB, which was a result of a flawed process created by the Conservatives. It also found that while we had an acceptable framework for indigenous consultation, one that we brought forward in our interim approach to environmental assessments, the Crown did not properly execute that phase of the process.

That is why today the Minister of Natural Resources announced an important step in our path forward. He said that the government has instructed the National Energy Board to reconsider its recommendation, taking into account the effects of marine shipping related to the project. We will be directing the NEB to report within 22 weeks. During this time, the NEB will hear from Canadians and provide participant funding for indigenous and non-indigenous groups. We will present to the NEB recent government actions to protect the southern resident killer whales and to implement the oceans protection plan. We are committed to ensuring that the National Energy Board has the expertise and capacity to deliver the best advice to the government. To that end, we intend to appoint a special marine technical advisor to the National Energy Board.

Our government has been clear about its vision for resource development, a vision built on three key tenets: creating good, middle-class jobs; protecting the environment; and indigenous partnerships.

We see the Trans Mountain expansion project as part of this vision, but the vision is much bigger than that. We are committed to building a long-term energy vision for Canadians, one that transitions Canada to a clean growth economy. Canada is now a global leader in clean tech and we are poised to be a clean energy leader as well.

We have worked across sectors and across the country to build Bill C-69, with industry and environmental groups. The bill moves past the Conservative way of ignoring indigenous peoples and the environment, and proposes a modern, new way to review major resource projects and a new framework to recognize and implement indigenous rights in a spirit of respect, co-operation and collaboration.

Our vision is of more than a single pipeline. It is about creating jobs for Canadians and charting a path for Canada's long-term future, a new course that recognizes that the economy and the environment must go hand in hand.

The Federal Court of Appeal confirmed that we had made a solid start with the interim principles we introduced back in January 2016, but it said there was more work to be done. We understand that. That has been our focus since we formed government in November 2015.

That is why we not only signed the Paris Agreement on climate change, but also helped shape it as an ambitious and balanced plan for ensuring that the environment and economy are equal components of a single engine that will drive enduring prosperity.

That is why we also sat down with the provinces, territories, and indigenous peoples to draft the pan-Canadian framework on clean growth and climate change, a blueprint for reducing emissions, spurring innovation, adapting to climate change and creating good middle-class jobs across the country.

That is why we are making long-term investments in clean technology and green infrastructure. That is why we are providing unprecedented levels of support for science and basic research. That is also why we are making a historic investment to protect Canada's oceans, marine life and coastal communities.

The $1.5-billion oceans protection plan will strengthen the eyes and ears of the Canadian Coast Guard, enhance our response capabilities in the unlikely event of a spill and support innovative marine research. It will also reinforce new important partnerships with indigenous peoples. That includes the joint creation of an indigenous advisory and oversight committee to assess the safety of the TMX project throughout its life cycle.

This is in addition to our efforts to improve indigenous peoples's access to financing for economic development, professional training and business opportunities arising from the pipeline expansion. We recognize the importance of Canada's energy sector and its impact on both Canada's economy and the environment.

The Trans Mountain expansion project is a key element, part of a common-sense approach that includes the diversification of our energy markets, the improvement of environmental safety and the creation of thousands of good jobs for the middle class, including good jobs for indigenous communities.

However, we have to do this properly, by keeping our commitments to reconciliation with indigenous peoples and to environmental protection, and as part of our plan to build a better future and a better Canada for everyone. That is what I am proud to support today.

The Conservative Party can continue to attempt to mystify Canadians with bafflegab, blather and blarney. Our government will do the right thing and be respectful, rigorous and get this done in the right way.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 1:55 p.m.
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Sheila Malcolmson NDP Nanaimo—Ladysmith, BC

Mr. Speaker, I oppose the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion of the TMX pipeline, and I have since 2011. It would boost bitumen oil shipments through the Salish Sea in my riding from once a week to once a day through sensitive ecology that cannot handle a spill. That is all downside and no upside for B.C.'s coast, and it is not in the national interest. Therefore, I and the New Democrats oppose Bill S-245.

Since the Liberals announced that they are buying the TMX pipeline, I have had more input from constituents on this issue than anything else. B.C. people are telling me they feel betrayed by the Prime Minister. They are dismayed the Liberal priorities are so stuck in the past. They are angry that the Prime Minister has bailed out a Texas oil company with a massive payout, to assume onto taxpayers a risk that the corporate interest was unwilling to assume, and dump all the financial and environmental risk onto Canadians. This is all about the future of our country and our environment.

Here is a fast reality check on some of the rationale out there. There is already a pipeline to tidewater. There is no demonstrated market overseas for bitumen and dilbit, and there is no price differential. Even if there was, exporting raw dilbit would be exporting the good jobs that could go with refining and adding value, the jobs the government has said it is trying to protect.

Solid bitumen eliminates the need for the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. The safest way to ship it is in solid form. No pipeline expansion means no social or first nations impacts, and no need to bail out Kinder Morgan with the $4.5 billion to $12 billion this is estimated to cost. There is certainly no need to buy this aging 65-year old leaky pipeline. All of the savings that could have come from not using taxpayer money that way and all of the benefit that could have come to our country is deeply discouraging. Therefore, I am going to outline the reasons I think it is not in the national interest in the following areas: first nations relationship and our constitutional obligations; endangered species; climate change; oil spill risk; fossil fuel subsidies; and, last, coastal jobs.

Starting with endangered species, the federal government has a clear responsibility to protect species at risk. There was a 2012 court order that told the government it needed to put measures in place to protect the habitat of the orca, which was the number one impact that was identified in the National Energy Board review. As meagre as that review was, it did say that the shipping noise impact was unavoidable and without remediation. The government went ahead and approved the pipeline anyway. The important thing for members to know is that the shipping noise interferes with the orca whales' ability to communicate with each other and to locate the chinook salmon they feed on. Their numbers before the 2012 court ruling were 87 members of the southern resident orca pod, which has now dropped to 75. This summer, international headlines focused the world's attention on the plight of this endangered species. The fact that environmental groups just last week filed another lawsuit against the Liberal government for its failure to protect the orcas shows that its vaunted oceans protection plan is not helping orcas yet.

With respect to the first nations consultations, for the finance minister to say, the very day of the court ruling, that the pipeline will be built and that we will also consult first nations leadership again shows the Liberal government does not get it. It cannot say it is going to consult but it has already decided what it is going to do.

We keep hearing from the government that its most meaningful relationship is with first nations, yet they continue to be pushed to the side. It is particularly coastal first nations that I am talking about here. Certainly, I am reminded by my constituents that this is not all first nations. However, in my own riding, the leadership is extremely concerned and opposed to the approval and expansion of the pipeline because of the oil tanker traffic.

Here is a message that I received this morning by text from my friend, Doug White III. Kwul’a’sul’tun is his Coast Salish name, his Hul’q’umi’num’ name. He is a former chief of the Snuneymuxw First Nation, and he is an elected councillor now. He states that, “Snuneymuxw has been frustrated that while [Kinder Morgan] and the [National Energy Board] said the project ends at the Burnaby terminal, and [Kinder Morgan] has no responsibility beyond that point with respect to tanker shipping of bitumen through the Salish Sea (which represents a total risk of the way of life of the Salish peoples...), they have taken it upon themselves to unilaterally define the project as being in the national interest without ever sitting down with the Snuneymuxw to discuss how the foundational pre-Confederation Treaty of 1854 structures such a decision.”

He goes on to say, “Completely ignoring and effectively denying the Treaty of 1854--particularly its powerful protection of fisheries in the Salish Sea--is the opposite of recognition and reconciliation. Even the colonial government of Vancouver Island in the 1850s knew the basic legal and political reality that they could not extract resources of Vancouver Island without establishing a proper relationship premised on recognition and respect of the continuity of Indigenous control and decision-making about their territories and resources. That is why the Douglas Treaties were established 160 years ago. We have to ask: Is the approach of the current government of Canada less than even a colonial government in the 1850s? The answer is clear.”

That is a condemnation and a huge damage to the national interest, which is of true reconciliation. That is the only way we can move forward.

So much has been said on climate. I am reminded by my constituent David in Nanaimo who wrote to the Prime Minister saying, “Your government says this Texas oil company's pipeline is in the national interest. We believe that having a safe climate is in our national interest, and the two are not compatible.”

I could not say it better myself. The disaster that is climate change barrelling down on us while the government has still failed to do anything stronger than adopt the emission reduction targets of the Harper Conservatives is a deep betrayal. The true national interest would be to truly act strongly and reduce climate change emissions.

On oil tanker safety and protection of the coast, the waters that I represent are one of the four areas in Canada with the highest probability of a large oil spill, according to the 2013 federal tanker safety panel of Transport Canada. It is one of the two areas in Canada with the highest potential impact of a spill.

In 2009, as chair of Islands Trust council, I wrote to the federal government when it was the Conservative government saying, “Please tell us that you are studying the impacts of dilbit, diluted bitumen, in the marine environment.” That evidence was blocked from the National Energy Board. I have been asking repeatedly in question period for the Liberal government to take action, and it has not. We have no demonstrated way to clean up dilbit in the marine environment, especially in a place with the speed of currents and rise and fall of tides that we have.

My constituent Mark wrote to the Prime Minister saying, “Any spill in the oceans surrounding Vancouver Island and the Strait of Georgia would be a national disaster.” I agree with him: not in the national interest but a national disaster.

This also breaks the promise that the Canadian government has made to eliminate fossil fuel subsidies. That was a promise made to the G20. It has been repeated again and again. The government has been fighting with the Auditor General these past three years. It will not show the evidence that says it is acting on fossil fuel subsidies. Certainly the purchase of the Kinder Morgan pipeline for $4.5 billion is evidence of further breaking of that fossil fuel subsidy promise. What that money could have been invested in instead, redirecting fossil fuel subsidies into establishing coastal jobs, green, sustainable jobs in renewable industries, would really be keeping all of our promises.

So much is on the line for us on the coast. A UBC study in 2012 said that the potential impacts of a large oil tanker spill could lead to as much as a 43% loss of employment in the province's coastal industries. Twenty thousand people on the Lower Mainland could be affected by a spill, and as much as $687 million in damage to the GDP from a single spill. Again this was identified by UBC.

In closing, I say, again, this is not in the national interest. As a kayak guide, I have had the great privilege of exploring so many of Vancouver Island's and B.C.'s wild places. I am deeply determined, along with my constituents, to stand up and protect the coast. Investing in and accelerating Kinder Morgan's oil tanker traffic is absolutely the opposite of the national interest, and I hope this House will agree.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 2:05 p.m.
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Cathy McLeod Conservative Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to rise today to add my comments to this very important debate on S-245. I would like to note the comments of my colleague for Lakeland as she kicked off the debate. She very articulately laid out this project, the time frames and some of the history. I will not redo what she said but I hope to add some new comments to the debate which should be reflected upon.

Even though the landscape has changed since this initial private member's motion in the Senate was introduced, passed and moved to us, it still remains a very important bill for us to pass in the House. Again, the landscape has changed considerably, but we must and should pass it.

I know that in an ideal world we would not have any dependence on fossil fuels. However, we continue to have that dependence. It is not just the gasoline for our car or the jet fuel for the planes that fly us to Ottawa and back home. Over 6,000 products require the use of oil.

In the short and medium term, the world, not just Canada, will continue to rely on oil and its products. I do have a belief that there will be technological advances that will create some solutions.

Dave McKay, the president of RBC, said, “Canadians are polarized about oil and gas when we should be focused on how cleanly we can produce it, how safely we can transport it and how wisely we can consume it.” Those are very important words.

Alberta is working very hard on how to cleanly produce. The discussion we are having today is how we can safely transport and then it is up to every individual to look at how wisely to consume it.

The government has decided to put all its eggs into one basket. The tanker moratorium simply means that people from Lac du Ronge and Eagle Spirit have been cut off, with no consultation on the opportunities they thought might be there for their communities. Of course, that would be a northern route. This bill is currently in the Senate. Again, it cuts off opportunity to get oil to the sea water.

Bill C-69 has been called the “never build another pipeline again” bill. I tend to agree. Changes proposed in Bill C-69 mean that another pipeline will never be built in Canada again. That is a huge problem. We can look at what is happening in the States and across the world. We basically have landlocked resources. In the short and medium term, we will be uncompetitive.

Having a “no pipeline” bill is important. However, what people do not realize is this. Look at the rail traffic. I live on a rail line. I was at a ceremony this week for a change of command for the Rocky Mountain Rangers. Fifteen metres from us was a rail line, which goes straight through Kamloops. Tanker car after tanker car travel right through town and along the Fraser River. It had already come down the Thompson River while salmon were spawning.

When we talk about transportation safety, it is relatively safe. However, it is more safe to transport oil through a pipeline than by tanker cars, which travel right through the middle of town and along the spawning channels. We have had wildfires. We have seen the instability of slopes when rains come. We are having washouts. There is big concern about the enormous increase in the tanker cars that go through our communities.

This does not even address the issue that we hear all the time from our grain farmers and mining folks about the bottleneck on the rail lines. As the rail capacity increases for tanker cars to transport oil, we bottleneck our supply system, our supply chain. This is a huge problem.

Northern gateway and the TMX is really a tale of two pipelines, because it has been largely decision-making by the current government.

Northern gateway went through its process and it was approved by the former government. A court decision came out and it was very clear. The Liberal government received that court decision. It said that some things needed to be done to improve consultation with first nations.

The decision was received by the current Liberal government. Every time those members suggest that they inherited a flawed process, it is quite clear that it was not the process but it was the execution of the process with northern gateway. It became much clearer that they did not learn any lessons after reading that report, in spite of the fact that they said they had. The Liberals completely botched their execution with respect to the duty to consult on the Trans Mountain pipeline.

The first decision said they could not simply be a note-taker. The Liberals had that information. What did they do? They sent someone to take notes. How is that looking at a decision and implementing it?

The minister stood up time after time and said that there was no relationship more important than the government's relationship with first nations. He said they were engaged, that they have had the best process ever, and yet his government did the exact same thing. Someone was sent to take notes and the government did nothing in terms of dealing with the issues at hand.

The Liberals failed. They failed as plaintiffs. Six communities took them to court with respect to the duty to consult. More important, they also failed 43 communities that had benefit agreements and were looking forward to the opportunities that would come with the construction of this pipeline going through their territory.

About one-third of the pipeline goes through the riding that I represent, which includes many communities as well as many first nations communities, the majority of which had signed benefit agreements.

After the decision came down I met with a number of first nations and other communities. One group had to completely redo its budget. It had counted on the benefits from this agreement. This group had to wonder what it could slice and dice out of its budget because it was faced with brand-new circumstances.

I met with another group called Simpcw Resource Group. As construction happened, and in the past, this company had been responsible for returning the disrupted land from the construction of a pipeline back to its natural vegetative state.

Companies are planting trees as we speak, planning on the economic opportunities. Construction camps are being planned. Cooks were looking forward to opportunities. These are real people. These are real jobs.

The fact that the Liberal government could not look at a court decision that came to them in 2016 and do the job properly is absolutely shameful. It failed to execute. When the government says it had a flawed process given to it, it is absolute nonsense. The government was told what it needed to do in order to do it properly. Please, do not ever let them say they were provided with a flawed process. The court decision was absolutely clear that the process was appropriate, it was the execution that was flawed.

This are real consequences to real people. This matters. I hope that when people look at this they will look at it as a benefit for Canada, not for the benefit of a small area only. This would benefit all of Canada.

I encourage all members of the House not to just look at their concerns and interests but to look at the big picture, look at it for the benefit of Canada.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 2:15 p.m.
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Winnipeg North Manitoba


Kevin Lamoureux LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise and hopefully provide a bit of clarity on the issue of the Trans Mountain project. It is of the utmost importance, and ultimately, nothing is going to change my personal thoughts. This is from someone coming from the Prairies, but it goes far beyond the Prairies. The Prime Minister has done a fantastic job in explaining that the Trans Mountain project is in the national interest. It is not just for one province over another province. It is indeed in the national best interest, because every Canadian in all regions of our country would benefit from the project moving forward.

From day one, it has been really important to our government to recognize that there is a significant environmental component and a significant indigenous component. We have heard other members, both Conservative and NDP, repeat what we have been saying from day one, that we have turned the page on the relationship between the national government and indigenous people since the election in 2015. This is a government that wants to move forward in a very progressive fashion.

There is a difference between the New Democrats, the Conservatives, and the government of the day in dealing with the pipeline. We need to recognize a little of the history to get a better understanding of where we are today. I sat on the opposition benches when Prime Minister Stephen Harper had an opportunity to advance this file. He chose not to, even though he was rooted in the province of Alberta. He felt there was no need for the federal government to get engaged at that time. Today, we look at the Trans Mountain project as a way to ensure that our commodity is in fact getting to new markets. That is a big issue to us, because we are so dependent on our oil going south. We know that if we can expand the market we will in fact be able to derive a better bottom line for Canadians. We need to recognize just how much that would really assist Canadians.

My colleague from the province of Alberta spoke earlier. Alberta has been a great contributor to the confederation through the oil royalties. Manitoba has not been as blessed with oil as the province of Alberta. Many would argue that as a result, our province has been very dependent on equalization payments. Where do those equalization payments come from in good part? They come from provinces like Alberta, which are able to export a commodity. With the Province of Manitoba receiving those equalization support payments, we are able to provide the types of social programming that allow us to keep on par with other provinces like Alberta and Ontario with services like health care, quality education, social programs and many others. Even environmental types of programs are carried out with the assistance of equalization payments. Money is transferred to the Province of Manitoba in the billions every year.

Therefore, when we talk about the net benefits of the export of things such as oil, it adds to the overall GDP. Production in one province may be a little more than in another. All Canadians benefit from it. That is done through equalization.

There are many individuals throughout Canada, whether from the Prairies or Newfoundland and Labrador, from every region of the country, whose direct and indirect jobs are a result of things that are taking place in Alberta and British Columbia.

We believe that those types of economic activities are contributing to Canada's overall well-being. We have a Prime Minister who from day one, even before he was prime minister, talked about the importance of Canada's middle class, believing that if we give additional strength to our middle class, if we invest in our middle class, we will have a healthier economy. By having a healthy economy, we raise the standard of living of us all, and so forth.

When the Prime Minister and members of the House discuss that what is happening with the Trans Mountain project and how important it is that it move forward, we need to understand why it is in Canada's national best interest. That is where we differ from our New Democrat friends. When I say New Democrats, it is not universally applied because we know that the Alberta NDP and Rachel Notley are doing a fantastic job trying to explain why it is so important for all of Canada to see this take place.

However, the national NDP does not want a pipeline. It is catering to a certain sector at a huge cost to all Canadians. I would appeal to the members to look back to the days when they were the official opposition hoping to be in government. They seemed to be more reasonable in approaching major policy issues, such as the ones we have before us today. If they do that, there is no reason why all members of the House should not get behind what the government is doing on the Trans Mountain project.

I was so disappointed when a Conservative said that buying out and securing the pipeline was a bad idea. I felt fairly good the day when I heard the announcement because, for the first time, we had a national government that made a very strong statement for the first time about that resource getting to market.

What did the Conservatives do? They started criticizing the government because we had acquired an asset that would ensure to the greatest extent possible that the job would get done. When it came time to stand up for Albertans in particular, but indeed for all Canadians, what did the Conservatives do? They went running behind Stephen Harper and took the Harper type of spin lines. That was what we witnessed firsthand when that announcement was made.

I say shame on the Conservatives, because day after day they tried to say that they wanted a government that would take action, a government that would move forward on this very important and critical pipeline. When the government did just that, what did the Conservatives do? I am disappointed and I would hope that the Conservatives would get behind the initiative by the government. If they truly believe in the well-being of the Canadian economy, in particular those thousands of jobs that would be generated in Alberta and British Columbia and the agreements that are shaping up with many of our indigenous communities, this is a project that is worth supporting no matter which political party one belongs to, with the possible exception of the Green Party. I have heard the leader of the Green Party speak on the issue and I expect there is no changing that particular position.

I would like to think that the other two opposition parties that have been around long enough would understand just how important the Trans Mountain extension is. The Prime Minister does and this government does. In fact, all members of the Liberal caucus in all regions of our country understand just how important this is to the national interest. We are committed to pushing this file forward and doing it in the right way.

That means working with indigenous people, looking out for our environment, and also delivering at the end of the day. That is something we are working toward diligently. I believe it is only a question of time before we will see some better recognition on the opposition benches of just how important this is to Canada's economy and, indeed, our social fabric.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

September 21st, 2018 / 2:25 p.m.
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The Deputy Speaker Conservative Bruce Stanton

The time provided for the consideration of private members' business has now expired and the order is dropped to the bottom of the order of precedence on the Order Paper.

It being 2:30 p.m., the House stands adjourned until Monday next at 11 a.m., pursuant to Standing Order 24(1).

(The House adjourned at 2:30 p.m.)

The House resumed from September 21 consideration of the motion that Bill S-245, An Act to declare the Trans Mountain Pipeline Project and related works to be for the general advantage of Canada, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

October 18th, 2018 / 5:30 p.m.
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Richard Cannings NDP South Okanagan—West Kootenay, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am happy today to speak to Bill S-245, which asks this place to declare the Trans Mountain expansion project to be in the general interest of Canada. I assume this has been brought forward because of the bureaucratic process the project has been through for the past few years and the legal quagmire that it remains in today.

The Conservatives have been gleefully blaming the Liberals for this mess and the Liberals have been blaming the Conservatives. For once, I am happy to report that they are both right. The irony is that this was a problem created by the Conservatives in the previous government, and is a problem that the Liberal government now has failed to address.

In the rush to get a number of pipeline projects done, the Conservatives gutted the Fisheries Act, the Navigable Waters Protection Act and the environmental assessment process. These actions served to polarize the Canadian public around energy projects and policy. That polarization is certainly part of the reason that pipeline projects continue to be a source of division in Canadian society today. That division is part of the reason these projects continue to be delayed.

Under the Conservative watch, the National Energy Board undertook an impact assessment process regarding the Trans Mountain expansion project, then owned by Kinder Morgan, now owned by us. That process was deemed by many to be deeply flawed. Consultation with first nations was inadequate. Concerned citizens, experts and groups were denied opportunities to appear before the panel. There was no opportunity to question or to cross-examine the testimony of Kinder Morgan. Major parts of the environmental study were ignored, namely those involving the marine transport aspect of the project.

Because of these shortcomings, in the 2015 election, both the Liberal Party and the NDP ran on a clear platform that called for the Kinder Morgan assessment to be redone. The Prime Minister repeated that promise numerous times: a brand new process. However, when the Liberals came to power, they announced something very different.

A ministerial panel made a quick tour along the pipeline route in the summer of 2016, giving first nations and communities very short timelines to prepare. It did not even record the proceedings. The panellists did produce a report that posed six questions they felt the Liberal government had to answer before making their decision on the project, but those questions have never been adequately answered.

When the NDP pointed out that this process was completely inadequate and that the Liberals should live up to their promise of a new thorough process, we were criticized by those who said that a new process would delay the project, perhaps by as much as two years. That was three years ago, and we are back at square one.

We are back at square one because at the end of August, the Federal Court of Appeal quashed the federal permits for the Trans Mountain project based on two errors: the lack of consideration of marine transport issues and inadequate consultation with first nations. Ironically, those are interconnected because a lot of the concerns that first nations had in that inadequate consultation were around the fact that marine transport was left out of the whole process.

I want to start by talking about that consultation issue.

The Court of Appeal clearly stated in a unanimous decision that the consultation process was simply bureaucrats who were sent out to listen to the concerns of first nations and to relay those concerns to cabinet. As the court repeatedly states in the decision, they were simply note-takers. There was no attempt made to actually address any of those concerns. In fact, the consultation team and the government apparently mistakenly believed they could not add any more conditions on Kinder Morgan than the National Energy Board had done, so why bother consulting if they could not make any changes.

One example of that failure is the concern of the Coldwater First Nation, which wanted the pipeline to take an optional route to the west to avoid crossing its aquifer. It is a big concern, a very reasonable concern and a reasonable request. However, there is no evidence that acting on that concern was even considered.

I could go on and on about consultation, but I will simply say that the government knows what proper consultation is. It is not an impossible task. It has been done before. It just requires more effort and that sincere desire to address concern, rather than just writing them down.

In the natural resources committee, we have heard many examples of proper consultation, many from the mining industry and certainly from the oil and gas sector. One example is the Squamish process regarding the Woodfibre LNG project.

The other error the court of appeal pointed out was the failure to include concerns about marine transportation. One of the main concerns there is the status of the southern resident population of orcas, which is something we have heard a lot about in the news this past summer. I must say that I know a fair about this, because I was on the committee on the status of endangered wildlife in Canada a few years ago and was at the meeting where we actually assessed that population as endangered in Canada. The Liberals are saying that they are relying on their oceans protection plan to cover off those concerns. It is a plan that claims to include world-class oil response. We hear a lot of that “world-class” talk around here.

This summer, I attended the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region meetings in Washington state, and I talked to people from the United States about that plan. It seems that the states of Washington and Alaska are very concerned that the Canadian plans are not world-class at all, at least not in the sense of being the best of the best or near the best. They are only run-of-the-mill world standard apparently. Alaska and Washington state would like Canada to join with their system of tracking ships off the Pacific coast, a truly world-class system that would be a proactive way of minimizing the risk of collisions and spills. This is the kind of thing we might have heard about had the TMX project included marine transport in its proceedings.

I want to turn again to this issue of polarization. When people who are concerned about the environment or first nations reconciliation are labelled “foreign-funded radicals” by the former Conservative government, and I still hear those words in Conservative remarks today, it makes a wide public choose sides and makes it very difficult to have a reasonable discourse on an issue. There is a way forward, a way to reduce this polarization.

I have been involved in a number of meetings here in Ottawa organized by Positive Energy. I think a meeting is happening right now today, which I cannot be at, but its goal it to bring these disparate sides together for a proper discussion on energy issues in Canada.

At one of these meetings I sat with Nik Nanos, the pollster, who had done some polling across Canada on this issue. He had found that only 2% of Canadians had strong confidence in Canada's energy regulation system, also known as the National Energy Board. His polling also indicated that there was a path to rebuild this confidence, and that path was through proper consultation with first nations and proper consultation with communities.

This court decision is a reminder that we have to put the effort in at the start. There are no shortcuts to the approval and assessment process for energy projects.

Finally, I would like to mention the story that we need a pipeline to tidewater, because it will give us a fair price for our oil, and that the discount we are forced to pay now is because we are forced to sell to one customer, the United States.

I have talked to many oil industry people and read a lot of articles in industry magazines, and two things seem to be clear. The first thing is that the best price for the oil we have is to be had in the United States and not in Asia. The second is that the discount we have been suffering through off and on for the past few months is due only to pipeline flow constraints and not to whoever we are selling to. Therefore, it is not who we are selling it to but how easy it is to move.

I met with pipeline industry reps this morning in my office and asked them about Line 3, one of the new expansion proposals for selling our oil to the United States. They said that line will be in operation late next year and added that it will fix the discount problem. Therefore, if we think that Trans Mountain is in the national interest because it is the only solution to the discount problem, that does not seem to be true.

The NDP feels that it is time for a thorough and critical look at our energy strategy in Canada. It is time to invest boldly in the clean energy sector to provide good, long-lasting jobs in a sector that is the true future of the world energy market. We feel that purchasing old pipelines is not proper use of public funds. Let us invest in the future.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

October 18th, 2018 / 5:40 p.m.
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Dan Albas Conservative Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola, BC

Mr. Speaker, as a fellow British Columbia MP representing a riding that the proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion will pass through, citizens and communities have a vested interest in this project.

In this place we often talk about the very large numbers, such as a $7.4 billion construction budget. Now that the government has bought it for maybe $9 billion or more, it estimates that for the first 20 years of construction and operation this will generate $46.7 billion, including federal and provincial taxes paid. It also estimates this project will create the equivalent of 15,000 person years of employment in construction and 37,000 indirect and induced jobs each year it operates.

However, what we do not often talk about are the smaller numbers, like the $922 million estimated for municipal tax payments over 20 years; the $8.6 million in community benefit agreements, the monies that pay for park upgrades or new trails and walkways in small communities. It helps to upgrade infrastructure.

For example, the small community of Merritt has had two once-in-a-century flood events these past two years. Many of the people in Merritt look forward to some of the upgrades that could alleviate flooding once this project goes forward. They have told me that they are very supportive of this project, not just for that but for all the other reasons I have given. It makes small rural communities and many local first nations communities more liveable and more prosperous.

Last week, there was an incredibly moving speech in the B.C. legislative assembly by former Haisla chief councillor Ellis Ross, who is now an MLA. His speech was a very powerful one on how resource projects could lift first nations communities out of poverty.

On that note, I would like to pause for a moment. While the Prime Minister and B.C. NDP Premier John Horgan were busy hugging each other for the photo ops for an LNG announcement, let us all take a moment to recognize the two people who played such a significant role in the announcement. They had the vision and determination to see that B.C. LNG project succeed. I speak of no other than former B.C. premier Christy Clark and former Haisla chief councillor Ellis Ross. They both endured a huge amount of mocking and personal ridicule from different sides. Thankfully, they had the resolve and conviction to see that project continue to move forward.

However, we are not here to debate B.C. LNG. We are here to debate Senate Bill S-245. Therefore, let us take a moment to see how we got here.

In 2015, when the Liberal government was elected, it inherited the following: a northern gateway project that had been approved by the former Conservative government; a Trans Mountain pipeline that was still before the National Energy Board; and an energy east pipeline that was in the works. What happened?

We all know what happened to the northern gateway project. The Prime Minister made the political decision to kill that project. It was not a science-based decision, because that same National Energy Board process also approved the very same B.C. LNG project for which the Prime Minister now so desperately tries to take credit.

After that, we know the Prime Minister then moved the goal posts so energy east threw up the white flag. When the Prime Minister did that, he had only one project left, the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project.

However, we are not done yet. Of course we know the Prime Minister has also set out with his northern tanker ban. That is also not a science-based decision. How do we know that? Because the Western Canada Marine Response Corporation can provide the same spill response in northern coastal waters exactly as it does in southern coastal waters. Likewise, the Pacific Pilotage Authority Canada, a Crown corporation, can also provide the same world-respected marine pilots to navigate these vessels as it does in southern B.C. coastal waters. Yes, companies like Seaspan, which provides multiple tugboats to assist with docking in Burnaby, B.C., can do the very same thing in northern British Columbia.

The bottom line and the evidence is that what the Prime Minister says is perfectly safe for tanker traffic in southern B.C. can be applied to the northern coast as well.

However, as usual with this Prime Minister, it is all about playing politics and boosting his brand. What is that brand? Increasingly, it is “Do as I say, not as I do.”

Let us look at this bill. Rather than slowly meandering through the other place to get through to this place, the Prime Minister could have recalled this place at any time during the summer and brought this in as a government bill.

However, we all know he did not do that. Why not? This Prime Minister was in a conundrum. He says he wanted to see this pipeline built, yet none of the things he actually does support getting any pipeline built.

We should remember, this is the Prime Minister who killed off northern gateway and energy east, and who proposes a tanker ban. Those were all political decisions and none was evidence based.

Kinder Morgan basically called the Prime Minister's bluff and established a deadline. Rather than make some difficult and unpopular decisions within that very voting demographic that this Prime Minister so wants to earn, he bought his way out of the problem that he himself had created.

Buying the Trans Mountain pipeline was a huge insult to taxpayers, but it was a brilliant political move by this Prime Minister. Why do I say this? It is brilliant because now he controls the timeline. What is the timeline? We do not know. We have a timeline for one part of the review, but for the other part of the process we have no timeline.

Do members see how that all worked together? This Prime Minister used Canadian tax dollars to buy his way out of a problem he created.

Do members remember social licence? Do members remember that line in the Liberal platform? I quote:

While governments grant permits for resource development, only communities can grant permission.

How is that all going? It is a massive fail. Does anyone think this Prime Minister will allow a Trans Mountain shovel to break ground between now and the upcoming election? I would submit everyone in this room knows the answer to that.

While I am fully supportive of this bill, and I commend the efforts of Senator Doug Black from Alberta to bring this bill forward, I have my doubts that this Prime Minister will actually do anything with this bill in the event that it gets passed.

I believe that with the Prime Minister it all comes down to numbers, and I do not mean the kinds of numbers I quoted at the beginning of my speech, be they big or small. I mean this Prime Minister is looking at the number of Liberal MPs in B.C. ridings, many located in the Lower Mainland where there is often the least amount of support for this pipeline, versus the very few Liberal MPs in Alberta.

Of course, there is also that NDP provincial government, which put its faith in this Liberal government initially by fully supporting its climate platform. Now the Prime Minister has totally thrown that Alberta NDP government under the bus. It is not an LNG bus, by the way.

In B.C., where a new LNG pipeline project is approved, that project has been given an exemption from the Liberal government's carbon tax increases. This Prime Minister looks the other way about that, smiles and hugs B.C. NDP Premier John Horgan for a photo op. This is the very same NDP premier who stands in the way of the project that this Prime Minister claims is in the national interest.

We also know this Prime Minister quietly waived tariffs so that cheaper, foreign steel can be used to build B.C. LNG. I wonder if he mentioned that when he was visiting Canadian steel mills this past summer.

By the way, did I mention that Westshore Terminals in B.C. last year exported more coal than the entire country of Mexico? I wonder if our Prime Minister had a conversation with Premier Horgan about that? I would say it is somewhat unlikely.

The Prime Minister says the Trans Mountain pipeline is in Canada's national interest. This bill states that the Trans Mountain pipeline project and related works are declared to be works for the general advantage of Canada. I agree with that.

I will vote to support this bill, one that I specifically reported to my constituents on. I asked them about the bill, and the overwhelming majority of people replying by email were very positive and supportive of it.

I am also hopeful that the Prime Minister will hear this speech and that he will also vote for this bill and for once actually do something that he says he will do and build it.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

October 18th, 2018 / 5:50 p.m.
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Paul Lefebvre Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise today as part of the government's response to Bill S-245 at second reading and to do so as the new Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources.

I have said many times over the past few months that I am truly honoured by the confidence given to me by the Prime Minister and I have big shoes to fill. The member of Parliament for Northumberland—Peterborough South, who was in this position before, set the bar really high and I want to thank her for her great work.

Luckily, I learned a lot while representing Sudbury. Some things stood out as being of particular importance: developing our resources, doing things properly and ensuring that development benefits everyone, including project proponents, local communities, the environment and indigenous peoples. In everything we do, we must consider both job creation and environmental protection.

It is for these reasons that we approved the Trans Mountain expansion. The project had the potential to create thousands of good middle-class jobs. It created opportunities for the 43 indigenous communities that signed mutual benefit agreements. Expanding Trans Mountain will also strengthen our economy by generating billions in new revenue for all levels of government and allowing us to ensure that Canada gets a fair price for its resources.

I would like to share just some of the main reasons we continue to believe in the Trans Mountain project. These are some of the basic reasons we purchased the pipeline's existing assets as a secure investment in Canada's future. It is also for these reasons that we are moving the project forward properly. The bill before us today has been overtaken by events. Not only is Bill S-245 clearly obsolete, but also, passing it would bring no real benefit to Canada or Canadians. That is why our government will oppose the bill.

We know that expanding Trans Mountain is in the national interest. However, Bill S-245 contains two fundamental flaws.

First, Bill S-245 was drafted long before the government acquired the pipeline and long before the Federal Court of Appeal quashed the government's approval of the project. In other words, the bill was written for a very different time and, therefore, serves no practical use in the circumstances we find ourselves in today.

Second, the bill is legally flawed because it seeks to increase federal jurisdiction over a project that is already under federal jurisdiction. Nor does it offer any real improvements in terms of how provincial laws affect matters within federal jurisdiction or change the scope of federal jurisdiction. In short, this bill adds no value and serves no purpose.

If I may, I would like to use my time today to remind members how our government is moving forward on the TMX project in the right way, such as how our efforts make the motion before us unnecessary and how our approach ensures that we continue to create good jobs and grow the economy as we also build public confidence, advance indigenous reconciliation and enhance environmental stewardship. All of this was actually confirmed by the Federal Court of Appeal, in its August 30 ruling on the TMX project.

For example, the court acknowledged that we had made a solid start with the interim principles we introduced back in January of 2016, measures aimed at improving the way major resource projects are reviewed in Canada. The court also concluded that “...Canada acted in good faith and selected an appropriate consultation framework” for engaging indigenous groups and communities on the expansion project and, finally, the court lauded our government's efforts to protect coastal waters and communities. It even encouraged us to continue with those efforts through our historic $1.5-billion oceans protection plan.

Ultimately, the Federal Court of Appeal found that there was still more work to be done in terms of the National Energy Board's review of project-related marine shipping and the phase III portion of our indigenous consultations. Our government accepts both findings which is why we have decided not to appeal the court's decision. Instead, we are following the court's guidance and suggestions for addressing those shortcomings. We are doing so in two key ways that supersede anything found in the legislation before us today.

First, we asked the National Energy Board to reconsider its recommendations, taking into account the effects of project-related marine shipping, including the effects of additional tankers along the coast of British Columbia.

We also asked the National Energy Board to deliver its report within 22 weeks. The board will get input from Canadians and will provide participant funding so that the views of indigenous groups are well represented.

Furthermore, we will appoint a special marine technical advisor to ensure that the National Energy Board has the expertise and capacity to deliver the best advice to the government.

Then, we asked the board to consider our government's recent efforts to protect the southern resident killer whales. Our oceans protection plan is part of these efforts. This is one of the largest investments in Canadian history to protect our waters, coastlines and marine life.

Second, our government decided to start over with phase 3 consultations with the indigenous groups affected by the Trans Mountain network expansion. We will use a different and much better framework.

For example, government representatives on the ground will have a clear mandate to conduct meaningful consultations. They will also be able to discuss reasonable arrangements with indigenous groups on the issues that are important to them. We will work with first nations and Métis communities to get their views on how to run the phase 3 consultations.

We will more than double the size of our consultation teams and give them access to all of the government's expertise, internally and externally. We will also adapt the consultations to the groups we are meeting.

Let me be clear. We are not starting over. We are building on the relationships we have, the information we have gathered and the consultations we have conducted.

Finally, as we move through phase 3 consultations, we will have access to the best possible advice from within and outside our government. As part of that, we have appointed retired Supreme Court of Canada Justice Frank Iacobucci to serve as a federal representative to oversee the consultation process.

All of these initiatives represent tangible and substantial ways our government is taking action to ensure the TMX project moves forward in the right way.

That is the clear vision and the practical plan missing in the legislation before us today. That is why I will not be supporting Bill S-245.

Trans Mountain Pipeline Project ActPrivate Members' Business

October 18th, 2018 / 5:55 p.m.
See context


François Choquette NDP Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise to speak to this bill. The NDP will not be supporting it either, but not exactly for the same reasons my colleague across the way laid out. In fact, his argument is not as sound as he claims.

Bill S-245 seeks to declare the Trans Mountain pipeline project and related works to be for the general advantage of Canada. We think that is a bit much, but that is okay. We are here to listen.

Every process related to the Trans Mountain project was completed recently. It bears repeating that the assessments were conducted according to the same environmental assessment system that the Conservative government used. The government did say that it would never use this system again after it was completely gutted of all its authority and no longer provided any opportunity for real consultation. I wanted to mention that.

Then there was the dramatic announcement that Kinder Morgan would not move forward with this project because it was not profitable and it made no sense. However, on May 29, 2018, the government decided to buy Kinder Morgan's shares along with the infrastructure related to the Trans Mountain pipeline. Using $4.5 billion belonging to Canadians, the people in my riding, and Quebeckers, the government purchased outdated, problematic, 60-year-old infrastructure. No one is talking about it, but one day this old pipeline will have to be dismantled and the site will have to be decontaminated.

Canada has a tremendous amount of sites to decontaminate. Often, old mining companies leave the land polluted and fail to assume their environmental responsibilities. Taxpayers end up footing the bill for all that. The polluter pays principle is extremely important. Here, the government just decided that Canadians will pay to decontaminate the lands along the pipeline's path. I was astounded by the news.

There continues to be strong opposition to this pipeline in general, especially on the part of municipalities, environmental groups and indigenous groups. They oppose it because the government is still subsidizing the fossil fuel industry. I would remind members that some $2 billion of Canadian taxpayers' money is used to subsidize the fossil fuel industry even though Canada committed to gradually eliminating these subsidies. At this rate, with inflation, we will never get rid of them, even though they promised to do so.

On Monday, a number of members joined us in asking for an emergency debate on the latest alarming report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the IPCC. It states that if we continue doing the same things, we will never hold global warming to 1.5°C, which was the commitment made by the Liberal government in Paris. It said that Canada was back as an environmental leader on the world stage. Unfortunately, it is back with the same low targets as Stephen Harper's Conservatives, making it impossible to make any real commitments.

Therefore, we are far from satisfied. Many people have said that this IPCC report is sounding the alarm and that we must take action and bring in more measures. The report mentions something critical, which is that the technology needed to limit global warming already exists.

What is lacking is political will. Speaking of a lack of political will, the Liberal government definitely has a deficit in that area. I am not the one saying so. According to Greenpeace, the Liberal government is not doing enough to reduce GHG emissions. Greenpeace spokesperson Patrick Bonin said that Canada is really not on track to comply with the Paris accord and warned that unless drastic action is taken, it will completely miss the greenhouse gas reduction target it set for 2030.

Need I remind the House that they were very low targets? François Delorme, an economist at the University of Sherbrooke's School of Management, said that Ottawa is sending the wrong signal by giving unequivocal support to the oil and gas sector, especially with the Trans Mountain pipeline purchase. He said that the government cannot ask people to change their habits while subsidizing fossil fuels.

That was the first mistake, as we have mentioned. Yes, we need to put a price on carbon as a first step, but the next step is to stop subsidizing fossil fuels. Not only is this government subsidizing them, but it is purchasing them with taxpayers' money.

That is not all. The Trans Mountain pipeline is floundering at the moment because of a court ruling that pointed out a number of flaws, including a failure to ensure the protection of marine biodiversity and marine mammals. According to a CBC report, the killer whale has become Trans Mountain's Achilles heel, and the Federal Court of Appeal found that the National Energy Board made a “critical error” in failing to assess the impact of the marine transportation of tar sands oil on killer whales. That is another important factor the government ignored.

This has been the subject of much criticism for some time now. In her latest 2018 report, the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development revealed that the Liberal government does not have an action plan for protecting marine mammals, including the St. Lawrence beluga. Because of the federal government's failure to take action, these species are going from threatened to endangered. In the report, Commissioner Gelfand wrote: “We found that federal organizations did not have any criteria or guidance for considering the specific needs of marine mammals”.

That is extremely important. Everything is connected. We see that with the Trans Mountain pipeline.

In closing, Canadians want champions of the environment. They want people who will use their money to support sustainable development and renewable resources, like the solar walls in my riding and energy efficiency. We are in the process of growing that very important sector in my riding.

There are many companies working to grow the renewable energy sector, but they have to compete with the fossil fuel industry, which receives billions of dollars in subsidies.

There is a lot more I could say, but I see that I have only a minute left. I will close by saying that Canadians expect much better from our government. The Liberals say that they are champions in the fight against climate change, but I think they have demonstrated that that is not the case.

That will not be the case until the Liberals eliminate fossil fuel subsidies and set better targets. There was an emergency debate on Monday, but nothing has been done this week and there is nothing on the agenda for next week either. The government has not made any more investments in energy efficiency, and it still wants to expand the Trans Mountain pipeline.

For all of these reasons, my constituents and other Canadians are saying that champions in the fight against climate change and champions of the environment do not buy pipelines. They invest in renewable energy.