One of Canada’s most economically powerful provinces is bailing on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s carbon tax scheme after a court nixed an oil pipeline that would have delivered crude to Asian markets.
Alberta’s premier announced Thursday that the province is pulling out of Trudeau’s climate change initiative to protest a court decision dinging the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline. Trudeau had previously approved the extension, but the three-judge panel ruled Canada did not consult with American Indians before making the move.
The province, located in western Canada, sits on the world’s third-largest oil reserve and was preparing to use the pipeline to deliver crude to Asian markets. Alberta Premier Rachel Notley trashed the ruling during a press conference Thursday night.
“As important as climate action is to our province’s future I have also always said that taking the next step, in signing on to the federal climate plan, can’t happen without the Trans Mountain pipeline,” Notley told reporters. “[U]ntil the federal government gets its act together, Alberta is pulling out of the federal climate plan.”
Alberta’s decision could seriously damage Trudeau’s climate agenda. His government introduced a carbon tax in January to curb greenhouse gas emissions — the tax was set to rise from $7.50 per ton in 2018 to $38 per ton in 2022. (RELATED: Canada’s Trans Mountain Oil Pipeline Is On Thin Ice After Court Caves To Environmentalists)
Notley added: “Let’s be clear, without Alberta that plan isn’t worth the paper it’s written on.”
Canada agreed to purchase the pipeline for $4.5 billion. Thursday’s ruling might undercut those plans, though, as Canadian taxpayers will be on the hook for funding a multi-billion-dollar acquisition of a worthless infrastructure proposal.
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