For Immediate Release
August 30, 2018
VANCOUVER, B.C. — The Greater Vancouver Board of Trade is most concerned that the Federal Court of Appeal has essentially halted the Trans Mountain Expansion Project.
Earlier today, the court announced it has overturned the Federal Government’s decision to proceed with the multi-billion-dollar project, undermining both the Federal Cabinet and the expert opinion of Canada’s independent regulator, the National Energy Board, in the full view of the international investment community.
“Clearly, Canada’s regulatory system is broken,” said Hon. Iain Black, President and CEO of the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade. “This project was approved two years ago by the Federal Government, following the most rigorous process and environmental assessment in this country's history. While the government will need to study the Federal Court of Appeal’s reasoning to determine its next move, in the interim this decision sets a precedent that once again calls into question Canada’s ability to get any major project built, and/or responsibly develop our natural resources.”
Today’s announcement also has serious economic consequences for the 51 First Nations communities along the pipeline route who, after years of good faith negotiations, signed mutual benefit agreements regarding the pipeline project, worth more than $400 million. For those communities, the project would bring employment opportunities, training and education, and improved infrastructure.
Whether by appealing this decision to the Supreme Court of Canada or via other plans to ensure the construction of this essential project, we urge the Federal Government to stand firm on its commitment to TMX.
In 2014, the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade applied and was granted Intervenor status in the National Energy Board regulatory process for the Trans Mountain Expansion Project. As Intervenors, the Board of Trade brought forward our perspective regarding the importance to B.C. and Canada of energy infrastructure development, on the condition that we do so responsibly and to the highest international standards of marine and land safety.
The Greater Vancouver Board of Trade firmly believes that the responsible development of market access for Canadian crude oil is of national importance. The current lack of "midstream" infrastructure has turned Canada into a supplier held captive by our only customer, the United States, which costs our national economy an estimated $50 million each day.
By ensuring Canadian oil has access to tidewater, the Trans Mountain Expansion Project will extend Canada's reach into new markets with customers who pay higher prices, generate thousands of high-paying jobs, and create billions of dollars in government revenue for both the country and British Columbia.
The Greater Vancouver Board of Trade also believes the Federal Government’s $1.5-billion Oceans Protection Plan will lead to world-class marine safety here in British Columbia, enabling us to protect our coasts while also getting Canada’s natural resources safely and responsibly to world markets.
About the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade:
Since its inception in 1887, the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade has been recognized as Pacific Canada’s leading business association, engaging members to impact public policy at all levels of government and to succeed and prosper in the global economy. With a Membership whose employees comprise one-third of B.C.’s workforce, we are the largest business association between Victoria and Toronto. We leverage this collective strength, facilitating networking opportunities, and providing professional development through four unique Signature Programs. In addition, we operate one of the largest events programs in the country, providing a platform for national and international thought leaders to enlighten B.C.’s business leaders.