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441-00004 (Natural resources and energy)

Paper petition

Original language of petition: English


We, the undersigned, citizens of Canada, draw the attention of the House of Commons to the following:

THAT, WHEREAS the Trudeau administration has announced it will spend $4.5 billion of public funds on acquiring the existing Trans Mountain pipeline from Kinder Morgan;

WHEREAS this $4.5 billion is not inclusive of construction costs for the expansion, projected to increase the cost of the deal to over $11 billion;

WHEREAS the pipeline was valued at $550 million by Kinder Morgan in 2007;

WHEREAS the expansion still has to pass the National Energy Board's 157 conditions and over a dozen court challenges before it can be built;

WHEREAS during the election, Trudeau promised to overhaul the Harper administration's deeply flawed pipeline approval process, respect Indigenous rights, and end fossil fuel subsidies;

WHEREAS a diluted bitumen spill would devastate local ecosystems and economies on the West Coast, or any area surrounding the 800 bodies of water its path crosses;

WHEREAS there is no proven way to clean up a diluted bitumen spill in a marine environment;

WHEREAS shipping out unprocessed diluted bitumen to refineries in other countries ships out Canadian jobs; and

WHEREAS the Trans Mountain expansion will; lock in oil-sands production growth that cannot be reconciled with Canada's greenhouse gas emissions reduction commitments, increase the risk of a diluted bitumen spill, violate the rights of Indigenous communities along the pipeline route, threaten Indigenous communities reliant on the marine environment for their livelihood and cultural practices

THEREFORE, we, the undersigned, RESIDENTS OF CANADA, call upon the GOVERNMENT OF CANADA to immediately halt any plans to purchase the Trans Mountain pipeline or otherwise support its expansion.

Response by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Signed by (Minister or Parliamentary Secretary): The Honourable Chrystia Freeland

The Government thanks the petitioners for expressing their views about Canada making additional investments in the Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMEP).

The environment and the economy go hand-in-hand. When we create prosperity today, we can invest in the clean jobs, technologies, and infrastructure of the future — and help Canadians benefit from opportunities presented by a rapidly changing economy.

The key to creating prosperity is finding new markets for our businesses to sell their products and services. Nowhere is the need to diversify greater than for our energy sector, where 99 per cent of our conventional resources are sold to one market — and often at large discounts.

Canadians understand that we need to open up new international markets, in order to get a full and fair price, support workers and their families, and foster competitiveness.

The Government’s approval of TMEP was based on the confidence that:

  • strong environmental protections have been and continue to be put in place, and that the effects of TMEP can be mitigated through conditions and recommendations outlined by the National Energy Board, as well as measures including the historic $1.5 billion Oceans Protection Plan and the national climate plan.
  • consultations with Indigenous peoples involved meaningful, two-way dialogue, which fulfilled the legal duty to consult and helped identify new accommodation measures and conditions to appropriately address potential impacts on Indigenous rights and concerns expressed by Indigenous communities.

Once TMEP enters into service, TMC expects to earn tolls that more than cover the cost of constructing the TMEP. These tolls are underwritten by long-term agreements with shippers for 80 per cent of TMEP’s capacity for 15 and 20 years. The final toll charged to shippers will be determined only after the TMEP enters into service based on the final construction cost.

Trans Mountain’s experience with the current pipeline system also demonstrates the robust demand for export capacity to tidewater. Since the onset of the global pandemic in March 2020 and a corresponding collapse in oil demand, the Trans Mountain pipeline continued to be fully utilized while other pipelines struggle with demand.

In addition, the Government launched the second step of its engagement process with Indigenous groups on June 9, 2020, to explore the possibility of Indigenous economic participation in the Project. In this step of the engagement process, the Government is focused on building consensus on the form of economic participation in the Project preferred by participating Indigenous groups; and identifying or supporting the formation of one or more entities to represent participating Indigenous groups in negotiations with Canada.

By moving forward with TMEP, the Government is creating jobs, diversifying markets, accelerating Canada’s clean energy transition, and opening up new avenues for Indigenous economic prosperity.

Presented to the House of Commons
Elizabeth May (Saanich—Gulf Islands)
November 24, 2021 (Petition No. 441-00004)
Government response tabled
January 31, 2022
Photo - Elizabeth May
Saanich—Gulf Islands
Green Party Caucus
British Columbia

Only validated signatures are counted towards the total number of signatures.