Premier John Horgan takes questions outside his office at the B.C. legislature Thursday, April 12, 2018. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)

John Horgan braces for Ottawa meeting with Rachel Notley

Invest in refineries, not Trans Mountain pipeline, B.C. Premier says

As he prepares to fly to Ottawa for a meeting on the escalating pipeline dispute, B.C. Premier John Horgan has some advice for Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

“I’ve heard speculation that the federal government and the provincial government in Alberta may invest in the pipeline,” Horgan said Thursday. “If they have disposable billions, I would suggest a better course of action would be to invest in refining capacity so that we Canadians can benefit from the jobs, and we Canadians can benefit from this natural resource, rather than sending it in raw form to another jurisdiction.”

Infuriated over Horgan’s efforts to stop the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion despite approval by both B.C. and Ottawa, Notley has said her government would invest in the twinning project or even take it over to make sure it gets built.

Trudeau has invited both premiers to Ottawa on Sunday, interrupting his tour of South America and Europe to try to resolve the bitter dispute between two NDP provincial governments.

RELATED: New spill response bases on hold

Horgan said Thursday he intends to continue preparing a reference case for court on whether B.C. has jurisdiction to influence the pipeline project. He stuck to that position after B.C. Environment Minister George Heyman admitted in the legislature earlier this week that the government’s legal advice is B.C. has no jurisdiction.

Tim McMillan, president of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, said in an interview Thursday that he has no particular problem with governments investing in oil and gas projects. But the problem here is B.C.’s obstruction of a duly approved project, he said.

I think Premier Horgan is setting up a false question when he raises things of that nature,” he said. “We refine more product than we use, so we are a net exporter of refined product. Could we refine more, sure. But I think we have to make sure the economics work for that.”

McMillan noted that the presidents of the ScotiaBank and the Royal Bank have spoken out in recent days, warning that continued disruption of pipeline investments is causing investment loss from Canada.

RELATED: Business groups call for action on pipeline

McMillan joined representatives of the mining, forest and other industries in Vancouver Thursday to call for urgent federal action to get the Trans Mountain project moving.

Just Posted

Province announces $100-million grant funding for Northwest communities

The Northern Capital and Planning Grant will go to four regional districts and 22 municipalities

Prince Rupert Gas Transmission project searches for partners

TransCanada is renewing permits for its natural gas pipeline project to North Coast.

Coastal GasLink stops work to investigate archaeological find

OGC archaeologists are en route to the Houston-area site where Unist’ot’en report finding stone tools

All Native Basketball Tournament Day 5: Recap

Highlights and results from day 5 at the All Native Tournament

All Native Basketball Tournament Day 6: Preview

Look ahead to all the action scheduled for Feb. 16 at the All Native Tournament

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

B.C. communities push back against climate change damages campaign

Activists copying California case that was tossed out of court

B.C. VIEWS: Power politics wins over rational energy policy

B.C Hydro continues to face interference on rates

PR firm suspends contract with former B.C. premier amid groping accusation

Edelman says in a statement that Campbell has served as a special adviser to the firm since last July

James says B.C. budget puts priorities on NDP’s poverty, environment plans

She said she expected the government’s poverty reduction and climate change strategies to be priorities in the budget

PHOTOS: Day 1 of the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer

Games kicked off in Red Deer this week

Ammonia leak shuts down curling club in Nelson

It’s not yet clear when the leak was detected

Most Read