With the Albertan election happening today, Jason Kenney has made it clear that he intends to take drastic action against British Columbia in the name of the energy sector workers if elected.
“Unless John Horgan ends his unconstitutional fight against Alberta energy exports, the people of B.C. will need to get used to paying well over $1.70/L for gas as the result of NDP anti-pipeline obstructionism.” Kenney said.
The NDP-Green alliance has been actively fighting new pipelines, most notably the Trans Mountain pipeline, from Alberta to the Pacific — damaging the energy sector and threatening Albertan jobs.
Kenney has promised to “turn off the taps” of oil and gas to British Columbia using a currently unused piece of Alberta legislation.
“Within an hour of being sworn in, we will hold a cabinet meeting, and the first item on the agenda will be to proclaim into law Bill 12, the ‘turn off the taps’ legislation,” Kenney said.
Bill 12, which was passed by the Alberta NDP, would allow the government to direct how much oil can be shipped out of the province and when.
Although passed, Bill 12 has never be used, which Kenney has sharply criticized the NDP for.
As Kenney holds a significant lead over Premier Rachel Notley’s NDP in Alberta, he will likely have the opportunity to act on his threat.
British Columbia claims it is ready for the challenge.
BC Attorney General David Eby says that if Kenney tried to “turn off the taps” the NDP-Green alliance would fight back in court.
“If it’s necessary, we’ll be in the courts to defend the interests of British Columbians, and we can be in court right away to do that,” he said.
Energy has remained the hottest topic of the Alberta election, with Kenney arguing his United Conservative Party has the better approach to addressing the lack of pipelines.
Kenney has promised $30 million to combat attacks on the energy sector by foreign special interests who seek to landlock Canadian oil.
Of this, $10 million would be dedicated to First Nations to defend their resource rights in court.
Meanwhile, Notley has defended the carbon tax, which hurts the energy sector and makes everyday essentials more expensive for Albertans.
The energy sector still flounders with low prices and poor access to global markets.
Albertans will make their decision on which party they want to stand up for the energy sector on April 16.