OTTAWA – The Council of Canadians reacts to news that Dan Gagnier, national campaign co-chair for Justin Trudeau, sent an email to TransCanada representatives with lobbying tips to prevent delays to the Energy East project under a new government:
“This leak suggests Justin Trudeau’s Energy East promises are more hot air than substance,” says Andrea Harden-Donahue, Energy and Climate Campaigner with the Council of Canadians. “There is no way a new government can pledge to overhaul the broken regulatory process for reviewing pipelines without incurring delays to projects like Energy East.”
Construction for TransCanada’s Energy East pipeline project is set to begin in 2017. Even without a change in government, this is an ambitious deadline under the existing 18-month National Energy Board timeline. TransCanada hasn’t even finished filing all of the needed information, and won’t until at least the end of this year.
“Trudeau talks of Energy East needing to earn social licence,” adds Maude Barlow. “Well, he needs to earn social approval too and this kind of backdoor nod to Big Oil interests puts his environmental promises in question.”
Under the Harper government, environmental regulations were gutted and pipeline project reviews were transferred to the industry-friendly National Energy Board, which refuses to consider upstream and downstream climate pollution impacts. The ability to publicly participate in the review process has also been dramatically reduced.
The Council of Canadians supports a fair review process for energy projects that includes extensive public participation, considers upstream and downstream impacts and climate pollution, as well as the unique risks to our waterways caused by shipping diluted bitumen produced in the Alberta tar sands.
For information, please contact:
Andrea Harden-Donahue, 613-233-2773 x240, email@example.com