B.C. taking Alberta to court over ‘turn off the taps’ gas legislation

‘Cordial’ discussion with Alberta Premier Jason Kenney as lawsuit filed

B.C. Premier John Horgan has called on both Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to help alleviate the fuel shortage that has contributed to record gasoline prices in B.C., as he continues to oppose expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline.

Horgan said Wednesday that B.C. he has put in an urgent request to speak to Trudeau to find ways to increase refined fuel to B.C., or light crude that can be refined at the Parkland Fuels refinery in Burnaby.

Horgan also described his “cordial” first phone call with new Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, who has proclaimed the Rachel Notley government’s law intended to restrict fuel shipments to B.C., but confirmed he wants to negotiate with B.C. before attempting to use it.

“[Kenney] said that he had no plans to use the bill, but felt as it was a key election commitment, he would proceed with it,” Horgan told reporters at the B.C. legislature. “Regardless, our lawyers today filed two actions in court to strike down the bill because we believe it’s unconstitutional.”

Horgan said he was encouraged by Kenney’s interest in the fuel price situation, but declined to comment on the suggestion that additional fuel shipments might be a way to settle the interprovincial dispute over pipeline expansion.

READ MORE: Kenney enacts pipeline law, says he won’t use it

READ MORE: Where B.C. drivers’ money goes to from gas pump

Horgan said his request to speak with Trudeau is about “what the new owners of that pipeline can do about relieving pressure here in the Lower Mainland.”

“I can’t rationalize the outrageous spike in prices here relative to other jurisdictions, beyond what I’ve said several times, a lack of supply,” Horgan said.

In the legislature, B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson accused Horgan of “begging” Kenney for more fuel, and suggested it was unlikely to happen.

The suggestion that twinning the 65-year-old pipeline from the Edmonton area to Burnaby will increase refined fuel flow to B.C. is not supported by pipeline usage data, or Trans Mountain’s application to the National Energy Board to expand it, he said.

The NEB application doesn’t propose to increase refined fuels, and pipeline data for the past two years shows an increase in diluted bitumen for export by tanker while refined fuels has declined, Horgan said.

Kenney acknowledged that “people in the Vancouver region are rightfully ticked off” about paying $1.70 per litre to fill up their vehicles, arguing that the expanded pipeline will alleviate the shortage and bring pump prices down.

Horgan said he hopes to meet with Kenney in person within the next 30 days.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureTrans Mountain pipeline

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Water recovery team stands down search for missing man in Stellako River

Jason Bouchard was in a boat with a friend that overturned in the river May 16

COVID-19: Increased federal funding for off-reserve Indigenous services welcomed news in north

Funding to benefit organizations such as friendship centres during pandemic

COVID-19: PG Community Foundation to disperse community support funds

$197,630 in funding announced by the Prince George Community Foundation

CGL workforce will gradually increase to 650 workers by end of May

The pipeline company provided a project update on May 21.

LIVE: Procession to honour Snowbirds Capt. Jennifer Casey comes to Halifax

Snowbirds service member died in a crash in Kamloops one week ago

RCMP facing ‘systemic sustainability challenges’ due to provincial policing role

Provinces, territories and municipalities pay anywhere from 70 to 90 per cent of the cost of the RCMP’s services

One man dead after standoff with Chilliwack RCMP

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the RCMP’s role in the death

B.C. employers worry about safety, cash flow, second wave in COVID-19 restart

A survey found 75 per cent of businesses worry about attracting customers

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Ex-BC Greens leader Andrew Weaver says province came close to early election

Disagreement centred on the LNG Canada project in northern B.C.

Canada’s NHL teams offer options to season-ticket holders

Canadian teams are offering refunds, but also are pushing a number of incentives to let them keep the money

B.C. premier says lessons to learn from past racism during response to pandemic

B.C. formally apologized in the legislature chamber in 2008 for its role in the Komagata Maru tragedy

Snowbirds to remain at Kamloops Airport indefinitely after fatal crash

small contingent of the Snowbirds team is staying in Kamloops, acting as stewards of the jets

Most Read