EDMONTON – Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says she will soon head to Toronto and New York to rally support among business leaders for the Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion.
Notley says she will also take her message to a meeting of U.S. and Mexican governors and Canadian premiers in Scottsdale, Ariz., in early May.
Details of who the premier will meet with and when have not been released.
The premier said it’s imperative to keep up pressure to get the Trans Mountain expansion completed so that more oil can move from Alberta to the coast.
“Economic leaders in this country must speak out with resolve and purpose,” Notley said Tuesday during the public portion of a meeting with her NDP caucus.
She said leaders need to find a middle ground as they balance economic management with environmental stewardship.
“The voices on the extremes are getting a little loud,” she said. “(There are) those who want to write working people out of climate action, and those who want to write climate action out of long-term economic development. Neither are right.”
Notley also had a few choice words for Washington State Gov. Jay Inslee.
“Recently, (Inslee) said he opposed Trans Mountain,” said Notley. “This from a state that welcomes hundreds of (oil) tankers a year from its ports in Alaska.”
The British Columbia government has said it is concerned about the ramifications of oil spills from increased tanker traffic, and has been fighting Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain project.
Inslee has said they share that concern over tanker spills.
The Trans Mountain line would triple the amount of oil flowing from Alberta to Burnaby, B.C.
Notley has said the pipeline expansion, which has been approved by Ottawa, is critical for Alberta to get a better price for oil in overseas markets.
Pipeline bottlenecks and increased transportation costs by rail are also reducing the price Alberta heavy oil can fetch on the North American market.
Trans Mountain has faced permit delays and multiple court challenges in B.C. Notley said her government will pass legislation this session to give her the authority to reduce the amount of oil flowing to B.C. if that province continues to stall the pipeline.