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Results: 1 - 15 of 206
View Andrew Scheer Profile
View Andrew Scheer Profile
2019-06-19 14:24 [p.29385]
Mr. Speaker, it has been a year since the Prime Minister promised that construction on Trans Mountain would begin.
Not one ounce of dirt has been moved so far. Canada's entire economy is suffering as a result. Every day of delay is costing Canadians $40 million. The Prime Minister promised that Trans Mountain would be built and operational in 2019.
Why did he mislead Canadians by making a promise he could not keep?
View Andrew Scheer Profile
View Andrew Scheer Profile
2019-06-19 14:26 [p.29385]
Mr. Speaker, again, he keeps saying things that are just not true. The previous Conservative government saw the private sector build four major pipelines, including one to tidewater, increasing our capacity to foreign markets. It is under the Liberal government that major pipeline proponents have pulled out of Canada. In fact, the C.D. Howe Institute estimates that 100 billion dollars' worth of energy projects have been killed by the government.
The Prime Minister committed to Trans Mountain being completed and in operation this year, but it is over a year later, and there is still no start date. His failure is costing Canadians. Why did he not say so?
View Andrew Scheer Profile
View Andrew Scheer Profile
2019-06-19 14:27 [p.29385]
Mr. Speaker, all the Prime Minister has done is buy a pipeline with taxpayers' money that he still does not have a plan to build. It is a terrible indictment of his record that in Canada, under his prime ministership, the government must nationalize a project to get it built. Under the Conservatives, the private sector did that.
We should not be surprised. After all, this is the Prime Minister who wants to phase out the energy sector and who has a senior minister who tweeted that they want to landlock Alberta's energy.
Why does the Prime Minister keep hurting our energy sector and the thousands of Canadians who work in it?
View Andrew Scheer Profile
View Andrew Scheer Profile
2019-06-19 14:28 [p.29385]
Mr. Speaker, we know what to do to get these projects built, starting with replacing the Prime Minister, scrapping the carbon tax, repealing Bill C-69 and giving our investors certainty that when they meet those standards, they can actually get it built.
The Prime Minister is great at saying yes. He just cannot get it done. Yesterday was another approval without a plan. Canadians did not want to see a photo op yesterday. They wanted a date on which this project would start.
Why did he fail to do that?
View Kelly Block Profile
View Kelly Block Profile
2019-06-18 19:15 [p.29346]
Madam Speaker, I appreciate the opportunity to rise to continue my response to the government's motion on the Senate amendments to Bill C-48.
As I said yesterday, I, along with millions of other Canadians, would rather that Bill C-48 be consigned to the dustbin of bad ideas. I read aloud the letter from six premiers that highlights the damage Bill C-48 and Bill C-69 are doing to our national unity. I left off quoting testimony from indigenous leaders and elected representatives on this and other bills, which underscored the hypocrisy of the government's claim to consult.
I will pick up there, considering the backdrop of Liberal attacks on the Canadian oil and gas industry, and share some of the testimony, much from first nations leaders, that the transport committee heard when we studied this bill. These are not my words. These are not the words of the Leader of the Opposition or any of my colleagues. These are the words of Canadians who, day in and day out, are working hard to provide good jobs and economic growth while maintaining a healthy environment.
Ms. Nancy Bérard-Brown, manager of oil markets and transportation with the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, said:
CAPP did not support the proposed moratorium because it is not based on facts or science. There were no science-based gaps identified in safety or environmental protection that might justify a moratorium.
Mr. Chris Bloomer, president and chief executive officer of the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association, said:
The proposed oil tanker moratorium act, Bill C-48, is yet another change that will compound uncertainty and negatively impact investor confidence in Canada....
In conclusion, the consequences of potentially drastic policy changes for future energy projects have instilled uncertainty within the regulatory system, adding additional risks, costs, and delays for a sector that the Prime Minister publicly acknowledged has built Canada's prosperity and directly employs more than 270,000 Canadians.
The approach to policy-making represented by the development of Bill C-48 contributes to this uncertainty and erodes Canada's competitiveness.
Commenting on the practical, or rather impractical, ramifications of this bill, Mr. Peter Xotta, vice-president of planning and operations for the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, said the following on what this bill could mean for the west coast transportation corridor:
With regard to Bill C-48, the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority assumes that government understands the potential economic impact for such a moratorium, given that there are very few suitable locations, particularly on the west coast, for movement of petroleum products, as was articulated by my associate from Prince Rupert.
Notwithstanding the fact that any future proposals would be subject to government's rigorous environmental and regulatory review process, this moratorium could create pressure on the southwest coast of British Columbia to develop capacity for future energy projects.
As I said earlier, there were many first nations representatives who gave testimony at committee. Ms. Eva Clayton, president of Nisga'a Lisims Government, said:
In the weeks that preceded the introduction of Bill C-48, we urged that the moratorium not be enforced before further consultation took place and that the moratorium should not cover our treaty area.
Much to our surprise, Bill C-48 was introduced before we had been offered an opportunity to review the detailed approach that the government decided to take, nor were we able to comment on the implications of the proposed legislation on the terms and shared objectives of our treaty even though the area subject to the moratorium includes all of Nisga'a Lands, all of the Nass area, and all coastal areas of our treaty....
We aspire to become a prosperous and self-sustaining nation that can provide meaningful economic opportunities for our people. This aspiration is reflected in our treaty, which sets out the parties' shared commitment to reduce the Nisga'a Nation's reliance on federal transfers over time. The Nisga'a Nation takes this goal very seriously. However, it stands to be undermined by Bill C-48.
Mr. Calvin Helin, chairman and president of Eagle Spirit Energy Holding Ltd., stated:
In that context, first nations people, particularly the 30-plus communities that have supported our project, have told us that they do not like outsiders, particularly those they view as trust-fund babies coming into the traditional territories they've governed and looked after for over 10,000 years and dictating government policy in their territory.
Mr. Dale Swampy, coordinator of Aboriginal Equity Partners, stated:
We are here to oppose the tanker ban. We have worked hard and diligently. Our 31 first nation chiefs and Métis leaders invested a lot of time and resources to negotiate with northern gateway with the prospect of being able to benefit from the project, to be able to get our communities out of poverty.
Please listen to how Mr. John Helin, mayor of the Lax Kw'alaams Band, identified those who support the oil tanker ban. He said:
What we're asking is, what is consultation? It has to be meaningful. It can't be a blanket moratorium.
If you look at our traditional territory and the Great Bear Rainforest, that was established without consultation with members from my community. The picture that was taken when they announced that, it was NGOs from America standing there trumpeting that accomplishment. We can't let people from outside our communities, NGOs and well-funded organizations that are against oil and gas or whatever they're against come in and dictate in our territories what we should and should not do.
In contrast to Mr. Helin's comments, Ms. Caitlyn Vernon, campaigns director for the Sierra Club of British Columbia, a witness who supports this bill, actually let the cat out of the bag in response to a question, when she said:
on the south coast, tankers pose a huge risk to the economy, communities, wildlife, the southern residents, and endangered orca whales that live in the Salish Sea.... Absolutely, I would support a full-coast moratorium.
Mr. Ken Veldman, director of public affairs for the Prince Rupert Port Authority put the views of Ms. Vernon, and others like her, including, I would point out, members of this House in the NDP, the Bloc, the Green Party and likely even the Liberal Party, in perspective when he said:
As you may imagine, there are a wide variety of opinions as to what's acceptable risk and what isn't. However, the reality is that risk can be quantified, and if you're looking to achieve zero risk, then you're correct that zero transportation is really the only way to achieve that.
That said, if our appetite for risk is zero, that has very broad ramifications for shipping off the coast in general.
When speaking to our committee this spring, Captain Sean Griffiths, chief executive officer of the Atlantic Pilotage Authority, also reflected on the impact of an oil tanker moratorium on the Atlantic Canadian economy. He stated:
Twelve of our 17 ports in Atlantic Canada ship large volumes of oil and petroleum products in and out of port. I can imagine it's a way of life back in the east, and it has been for quite some time. We move a lot of oil in and out of our ports. Placentia Bay alone, for instance, has 1,000 to 1,100 tanker movements every year on average, so a moratorium would, I'm sure, devastate the region.
Bill C-48, along with Bill C-88, and the “no more pipelines” bill, Bill C-69, paint a pattern of a government and a Prime Minister obsessed with politicizing and undermining our energy resources sector at every turn. Whether it be through legislation, the carbon tax, the cancellation of the northern gateway and energy east pipelines or the continued bungling of the Trans Mountain expansion, which we heard today the Liberals have approved yet again, the current Prime Minister has proven, at every turn, that he is an opponent of our natural resources sector. If the government was serious about the environment and the economy going hand in hand, it would implement real changes.
Hypothetically speaking, let us look at some the changes the government might make. It could use scientific independent studies to further strengthen our world-leading tanker safety system by making changes that would not only protect our domestic waters but the waters of any country with which we trade. It could require all large crude oil tankers operating in Canadian waters to have a double hull, since a double hull has two complete watertight layers of surface and is much safer. It could even go a step further and inspect every foreign tanker on its first visit to a Canadian port and annually thereafter, holding those tankers to the same standards as Canadian-flagged vessels.
This hypothetical government could also expand the national aerial surveillance program and extend long-term funding. It could increase surveillance efforts in coastal areas, including in northern British Columbia. It could ensure that the aerial surveillance program was given access to remote sensing equipment capable of identifying potential spills from satellite images.
This theoretical government could give more power to the Canadian Coast Guard to respond to incidents and establish an incident command system. It could amend legislation to provide alternate response measures, such as the use of chemical dispersants and burning spilled oil during emergencies, and could clarify the Canadian Coast Guard's authority to use and authorize these measures when there was likely to be a net environmental benefit.
It could create an independent tanker safety expert panel to receive input from provincial governments, aboriginal groups and marine stakeholders and then implement the changes recommended by this panel. It could focus on preventing spills in the first place and cleaning them up quickly if they did occur, while making sure that polluters pay.
Hypothetically, the government could modernize Canada's marine navigation system and have Canada take a leadership role in implementing e-navigation in our tankers while supporting its implementation worldwide. This is doubly important, since e-navigation reduces the risk of an oil spill by providing accurate real-time information on navigation hazards, weather and ocean conditions to vessel operators and marine authorities, thereby minimizing the potential for incidents.
It could establish new response planning partnerships for regions that have or are expected to have high levels of tanker traffic, such as the southern portion of British Columbia, Saint John and the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick, Port Hawkesbury in Nova Scotia, and the Gulf of St. Lawrence in Quebec. It could work to develop a close partnership with each of these regions, including with local aboriginal communities, to develop responses to the unique challenges facing their tanker traffic.
This theoretical government could strengthen the polluter pay regime by introducing legislative and regulatory amendments that would remove the ship-source oil pollution fund per incident liability limit and ensure that the full amount was available for any incident. It could ensure that compensation was provided to eligible claimants while recovering these costs from industry through a levy. As well, it could extend compensation so that those who lost earnings due to an oil spill would be compensated even if their property had not been directly affected.
All these changes could be done by a government that actually cared about protecting the environment and continuing to grow the economy. Wait a minute. We are not talking about a hypothetical government. Every single one of the changes I just mentioned was brought in by the previous Conservative government. Unlike the Liberal government, we listened to the experts, which empowered us to make real, practical changes that made a difference.
While Liberals vacillate between paralysis and empty, economically damaging, virtue-signalling legislation, Conservatives look for real solutions. Case in point, the Liberal government is so preoccupied with appearances that it just finished its third round of approving a pipeline supported by over 60% of British Columbia residents.
I read the quote earlier by some who support this legislation. Some would like to see a complete prohibition on oil movement.
This ideological oil tanker moratorium, as I have said, is not based on science. We know that. That is why, frankly, we did not propose any amendments when this bill was before the transport committee. We did not believe that this bill was redeemable, and I still do not. There was a brief moment of hope for me when the Senate committee recommended that the bill not proceed. Sadly, that hope was short-lived.
This brings us to today and the motion that is the basis of our debate. I will take a few minutes to outline my thoughts on the government's response to the Senate's amendments to the Liberals' terrible bill.
Last week, the Senate voted on three amendments to Bill C-48. One, by a Conservative senator, which would have given the Minister of Transport the authority to adjust the northern boundary of the tanker moratorium, would have been an improvement to the bill. Regrettably, it was narrowly defeated.
The amendment in the other place that did pass cannot be called an improvement to this bill. While somewhat noble in its intent, it is a thin attempt to mask the fact that this entire bill is an affront to indigenous people's rights. The inclusion of these clauses in the bill does not change that fact.
Regarding the second part of the amendment passed by the Senate, I acknowledge that it is at least an attempt to recognize that this bill is an assault on a particular region of the country, namely, the oil-producing prairie provinces. This second part of the amendment passed by the Senate calls for a statutory review of the act as well as a review of the regional impact this act would have. The government's motion, which we are debating today, amended certain elements of this Senate amendment.
No one will guess which section of this amendment the government kept and which section it rejected. Those who guessed that it rejected the section that, at the very least, acknowledged indirectly that this bill was an attack on western Canada, would be correct.
This further demonstrates that when the Prime Minister or one of his ministers claims that others are threatening national unity with their opposition to certain pieces of legislation by the government, it is the ultimate doublespeak. Hon. senators who support this bill had the decency to propose and pass an amendment that was at least a tip of the hat to the alienation felt by western Canadians brought on by the Liberal government's actions. The motion we are debating today has stripped these sections from the bill, proving once again that this is just another step in the Prime Minister's plan to phase out the oil sands, regardless of the impact on Canada's economic well-being.
It is for these reasons that my colleagues and I oppose the government's motion on the Senate amendments to Bill C-48. We on the Conservative side will always stand up for Canada. We support Canada's natural resource sector, which contributes billions to our economy and economic growth. We support Canada's environment with practical, science-based policies that have a real and positive impact on our country's, and indeed the whole world's, environment. We support Canadians in their hope and desire for sustainable, well-paying jobs so that they can support their families, support each other and contribute to a happy and healthy Canada.
Conservatives support legislation that is based on science, research and the facts, and this bill is none of the above.
View Andrew Scheer Profile
View Andrew Scheer Profile
2019-06-12 14:29 [p.28987]
Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is causing the problem. He is the one causing divisions between regions and polarizing Canadians. He is acting like someone who sets fire to a house and then lashes out at the people calling the fire department. It is his policies that killed the northern gateway project, that killed energy east and now has had to use taxpayers' dollars to purchase a decades-old pipeline.
When will he realize that it is his policies that are hurting the energy sector and leading to men and women being out of work?
View Andrew Scheer Profile
View Andrew Scheer Profile
2019-06-12 14:30 [p.28988]
Mr. Speaker, there he goes again just saying things that he knows are not true. The previous Conservative government saw four major pipelines completed and built, including one to tidewater, without taxpayers' dollars. It is his policies that have ignored indigenous concerns; indigenous communities that wanted to be partners in northern gateway. It is his policies that are condemning Canadians to always be reliant on foreign oil coming into our markets.
When will he realize that his policies are phasing out the energy sector and all the jobs that go with it?
View Kevin Waugh Profile
View Kevin Waugh Profile
2019-06-11 22:23 [p.28969]
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise tonight to speak to Bill C-88, an act to amend the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act and the Canada Petroleum Resources Act.
Once again, this bill, like many other bills we have seen in the House, is being debated and rushed through Parliament in the last few days before the House rises for the summer. It is worth noting that this is a bill that was only studied in our committee on indigenous and northern affairs for one meeting before we went into clause-by-clause consideration. As a result, we were unable to hear live testimony from stakeholders such as the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation, the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers and the Northwest Territories Chamber of Commerce.
We have recently seen these legislative delays with other important bills, such as Bill C-92, which was passed at third reading in this House just last week, on June 3. It is totally unacceptable that the Liberals have so utterly mismanaged their legislative schedule when it comes to the bills that are now before us, days before we rise.
Bill C-88 is a bill that forms part of a long Liberal saga to kill natural resources development in this country. The bill would amend subsection 12(1) of the Canada Petroleum Resources Act to allow the Governor in Council to arbitrarily ban any oil and gas activity across the Arctic offshore. Under this bill, the government would only need to invoke the national interest to ban oil and gas development in the Beaufort Sea. However, the term “national interest” remains undefined in this bill, so the government would have complete discretion to decide when it should ban oil and gas activities in the Arctic offshore. These opportunities for greater economic prosperity in the north would therefore be limited and controlled by the ministers here in Ottawa. Again, under the current government, Ottawa knows best.
We have already seen the Liberals reveal their paternalism when it comes to economic opportunities for northern communities. We just have to go back to December 2016. While the Prime Minister was in Washington, D.C., he announced that there would be a moratorium on offshore oil and gas development in the Beaufort Sea. No, he was not up in northern Canada. He was, in fact, meeting with President Obama in Washington.
There was absolutely no consultation with the Government of Northwest Territories before this moratorium was announced in Washington. In fact, the territorial leaders of the day were given less than half an hour's notice before the Prime Minister declared the moratorium, in the United States, the farthest destination away from northern Canada.
By single-handedly introducing a moratorium on oil and gas development in the Beaufort Sea, the Liberals are telling northern communities that Ottawa knows best. The Liberals are saying, through their actions, that northerners do not have the right to pursue their own economic opportunities without the approval of the current federal government.
We heard from multiple witnesses in committee about the devastating impact the Liberals' moratorium has had on northerners. Wally Schumann, the minister of industry, tourism and investment and the minister of infrastructure for the Northwest Territories, said the following about the moratorium:
I guess we can be very frank because we're in front of the committee.
When it first came out, we never got very much notice on the whole issue of the moratorium and the potential that was in the Beaufort Sea. There were millions and millions, if not billions, of dollars in bid deposits and land leases up there. That took away any hope we had of developing the Beaufort Sea.
We also heard from Merven Gruben, the mayor of Tuktoyaktuk. He was very disappointed with the Liberal decision to unilaterally impose this moratorium on northerners. He was very concerned about the effects this ban would have on the people of his community. He said:
It's so easy to sit down here and make judgments on people and lives that are some 3,500 klicks away, and make decisions on our behalf, especially with that moratorium on the Beaufort. That should be taken away, lifted, please and thank you. That is going to open up and give jobs to our people—training and all the stuff we're wishing for.
Unfortunately, the Liberals are not listening to the voices, again, of the northerners, and as a result, communities are paying the price now for the Liberal government's arrogance. There is absolutely no doubt that Bill C-88 is just another attempt by the Liberal government to polarize oil and gas extraction in this country. It explains the power of cabinet to block economic development and adds to the ever-increasing levels of bureaucratic red tape that need to be navigated by proponents of energy development.
The bill makes northern energy development more difficult by increasing the obstacles that must be overcome by energy proponents before they can even put shovels in the ground.
In response to these polarized anti-energy provisions, many stakeholders have voiced their concerns. One of the numerous stakeholders that want to see the Governor in Council power to ban oil and gas development removed finally from the bill is the Northwest Territories Chamber of Commerce. It has written submissions to our committee. The chamber indicated its opposition to the final authority of the Governor in Council to ban northern oil and gas development.
The chamber wrote to us as follows:
The final decision needs to be approved by the Indigenous Nation of the prescribed area who are the steward's of the area but also rely on the land to provide economic independence to their membership and throughout the NT.
Of course, in pushing through Bill C-88 without any amendments, the Liberals have demonstrated that they do not care about the opinions and concerns of our northern communities, which will be deeply affected by this piece of legislation. These northern voices are once again being ignored by the Liberal government.
Another important stakeholder that expressed really serious concerns about Bill C-88 was the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation. Unfortunately, like the Northwest Territories Chamber of Commerce, the IRC was not afforded the opportunity at all to present live testimony to our committee, because, as I mentioned before, we were only given one day to hear from witnesses on this very important matter.
Again, the Liberals rushed the process. It was the result of the Liberals' mismanagement of the parliamentary agenda and a consequence of the fact that the Liberals left this bill to the very last minute for deliberations.
Like so many other crucial stakeholders, the IRC is opposed to the unilateral power to ban oil and gas development in the Arctic offshore, which the bill gives to the Governor in Council.
It is hardly surprising that the IRC is against the arbitrary power given to politicians here in Ottawa to determine the fate of energy development in the north. Bill C-88 says that the Governor in Council can ban oil and gas development projects when “it is in the national interests to do so”. However, does Bill C-88 tell us what the national interest is? Does Bill C-88 tell northern communities what the national interest is? No, of course not.
Like so many other Liberal anti-energy policies, questions of the national interests are only for the Liberals to decide and nobody else. The bill is simply a reinforcement of the arrogant mantra that the Liberals know best.
Given that the IRC was not given the opportunity to offer live testimony on this discussion on Bill C-88, I would like to read into the record some of the serious concerns the IRC highlighted in its written submission to our committee.
First of all, it bears noting that the IRC is an organization that was created way back in 1984 to manage the settlement that formed part of the Inuvialuit Final Agreement, better known as the IFA. The Inuvialuit occupy the Inuvialuit Settlement Area, or the ISR, and beyond.
The IFA was the first comprehensive land claim agreement settled north of the 60th parallel and only the second settled in Canada's history.
Why was this land claim agreement so important for Inuvialuit people, and why did they initiate the negotiations with the Government of Canada? In the IRC's own words, the land claim negotiations “came in response to our limited influence in increasing development activity on our lands and the vast marine areas of the ISR.”
In the short term, then, the Inuvialuit secured a land claim agreement, in part, so that they could have greater influence over development activities on their own lands.
With this background in mind, the IRC has written about its serious reservations with regard to the power the bill would give to Ottawa to declare oil and gas moratoriums on IRC lands. In fact, the IRC already saw the Prime Minister declare a moratorium in a significant portion of their settlement region when the Liberals were first elected to power in 2016. In regard to this ban, the IRC wrote,
it is important to note that the imposition of the Moratorium by the Prime Minister was done without consultation with any Inuvialuit in contravention of the IFA and with the framework established and the promises made under the Northwest Territories Lands and Resources Devolution Agreement.
The Liberals simply seized the opportunity in 2016 to unilaterally implement a moratorium on oil and gas in the north while the Prime Minister, as I mentioned before, was not even in this country. He was in the United States of America looking for photo ops and free publicity. The Liberals did not consult at all with stakeholders before they took on this decision. What is worse, instead of apologizing to many of the northern communities that are suffering because of this moratorium, the Liberals are going full steam ahead with Bill C-88, as we see tonight, to ensure that they can unilaterally put bans on northern oil and gas development again and again.
Bill C-88 says that the Governor in Council can make these bans when it is in the national interest to do so. The IRC and Conservatives would like to know what the Liberals mean when they say “in the national interest”.
The IRC had the following to say on the issue of the national interest:
The national interest criterion is problematic as it elevates the national priorities of the day vis-à-vis Inuvialuit priorities within our traditional territory. It would be akin to an appropriation a constituent might experience in the south without any restitution from the government. Bill C-88 does not define national interest or incorporate an express requirement to consider how the national interest ought to be balanced against the ability of rights holders to provide for their economic future.
Despite these concerns from indigenous stakeholders in the north, the Liberals have demonstrated repeatedly, through their anti-energy policies, that they have no intention at all of ever balancing their vision of the national interest against the views of indigenous groups that do not share the Liberals' hostile attitude toward natural resource development.
Unfortunately, Bill C-88 is not the only bill the Liberals have pushed forward, to the detriment of the indigenous communities across this country. We have just heard from indigenous communities about the real concerns they have about Bill C-69, the Liberal environmental assessment act.
Stephen Buffalo, the president and CEO of the Indian Resource Council and a member of the Samson Cree Nation, said:
Indigenous communities are on the verge of a major economic breakthrough, one that finally allows Indigenous people to share in Canada's economic prosperity. Bill C-69 will stop this progress in its tracks.
Roy Fox, chief of the Kainai or Blood tribe first nation, said the following about Bill C-69:
...I and the majority of Treaty 7 chiefs strongly oppose the bill for its likely devastating impact on our ability to support our community members, as it would make it virtually impossible for my nation to fully benefit from the development of our energy resources.
Bill C-48, the northern B.C. oil tanker ban, is yet another Liberal anti-energy bill that the Liberals have rammed through this Parliament against the wishes of major indigenous stakeholders. Bill C-48 shuts the door to the Eagle Spirit pipeline proposal, an energy corridor that is supported by over 35 first nations and is an indigenous-led and indigenous-owned initiative. It is a $17-billion project that has the potential to provide economic opportunity to numerous indigenous communities. However, as with Bill C-88, this one tonight, Bill C-48 is another Liberal anti-energy bill that is both hurtful and patronizing to indigenous communities. Bill C-48 is another example of the Liberal government here in Ottawa telling indigenous communities that they cannot pursue their own natural resource development when it does not suit the interests of the Liberal agenda of the day.
Indigenous communities are tired of the paternalism that has been constantly demonstrated toward them by this anti-energy Liberal government. The chair and president of Eagle Spirit Energy, Calvin Helin, who is a member of the Lax Kw'alaams First Nation, had the following to say about the viewpoint of the 35 first nations that are in favour of the Eagle Spirit pipeline. He said that these first nations “do not like outsiders, particularly those they view as trust-fund babies, coming into the traditional territories they've governed and looked after for over 10,000 years and dictating government policy in their territory.”
However, the Liberals clearly do not think that these indigenous viewpoints are part of the current government's idea of a national interest, so they choose to ignore these voices. As a result of Liberal indifference to the concerns of these indigenous groups, in 2018 the chiefs council for the Eagle Spirit pipeline had to launch a GoFundMe campaign just to help pay legal costs in a court challenge to Bill C-48. The Eagle Spirit project noted the sad state of affairs by stating that this action is required to be taken by Canada's poorest people against a federal justice department with unlimited resources. Other indigenous groups have either filed lawsuits or are planning to do so pending the legislative fate of Bill C-48.
Sadly, the Liberals again did not listen to these indigenous voices then, and they are not listening to the indigenous voices in our northern communities today. It is glaringly clear that all the Liberals care about is the pursuit of their anti-energy policies at all costs. However, the cost is a very real human cost to the ability of northern communities to be in control of their own economic development opportunities.
The Liberals have promised time and time again to work with northerners. With only days left now in this Parliament, when will the Liberals finally live up to this promise?
View Kelly Block Profile
View Kelly Block Profile
2019-06-10 22:46 [p.28872]
Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with my colleague from Markham—Unionville.
I appreciate having the opportunity to speak to Bill C-88 at third reading stage.
This bill is divided into two parts, as we have heard. Part 1 amends the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act while part 2 amends the Canada Petroleum Resources Act. It is the second part of the bill that I will primarily be addressing in the time that I have today.
Simply put, this part of Bill C-88 makes a mockery of the government's claim to seriously consult with aboriginal and Inuit peoples. Furthermore, it proves yet again that the Liberal Party is no friend of the Canadian oil and gas sector.
Part 2 of Bill C-88 imposes a five-year moratorium on the development of offshore oil and gas projects in the Beaufort Sea. This is not surprising for anyone who has followed the government with even a modicum of attention. The Liberals have proven time and time again that they are opposed to Canada's energy sector. Whether it be the carbon tax or Bill C-48 banning tanker traffic off of British Columbia's northern coast or the 180-amendment, Frankenstein monster of a bill that is the “no more pipelines” Bill C-69, or the cancellation of the northern gateway and energy east pipelines, or the continued bungling of the Trans Mountain extension, we can always count on the Liberals to find a way to make life miserable for workers in our oil and gas sector.
At every opportunity, the Prime Minister has politicized the regulatory and environmental assessment processes. Bill C-88 follows this already established pattern. As a result, it is no wonder Canada has been bleeding foreign investment funds and suffered economic stagnation under the Prime Minister.
Bill C-88 is about more than just the Liberals' clear disdain for our natural resource sector. This bill exposes the Prime Minister's false claims of consultation.
Under the previous Conservative government, we made a concerted effort to devolve power to the territories to ensure that they had the decision-making powers they needed to develop their abundance of natural resources in a safe, secure and sustainable manner. I will not pretend that we got it right every step of the way but there was no doubt about our goal and our honest attempt to transfer power to the territorial level.
In one afternoon, the Prime Minister derailed years of progress by the territories toward full self-governance. At a glitzy press conference in Washington designed to garner praise from the international press, he announced that Canada would be placing a moratorium on offshore drilling in the north. This announcement came as quite the surprise to the governments of the territories. Some of them received less than an hour's notice that the Prime Minister was about to throw their economic futures out the window so he could get a nice write-up in Vanity Fair.
Minister Wally Schumann of the Northwest Territories described how they found out about the ban and the impact it will have on our north. He said:
When it first came out, we never got very much notice on the whole issue of the moratorium and the potential that was in the Beaufort Sea. There were millions and millions, if not billions, of dollars in bid deposits and land leases up there. That took away any hope we had of developing the Beaufort Sea.
Really, we should not be surprised. The Prime Minister has always believed in a paternalistic, “Ottawa knows best” relationship with the territories, provinces and indigenous peoples. Mayor Merven Gruben put it well when speaking at committee in Ottawa. He said:
It’s so easy to sit down here and make judgments on people and lives that are 3,500 klicks away, and make decisions on our behalf, especially with that moratorium on the Beaufort. That should be taken away, lifted, please and thank you. That is going to open up and give jobs to our people—training and all the stuff we’re wishing for.
The Prime Minister has decided the future for the north and he is using this bill to make that happen but he never stopped and asked what the people in the north want, and they do not want this.
Northwest Territories Premier Bob McLeod stated clearly how his government felt about the announcement. He said:
It feels like a step backward.
We spent a lot of time negotiating a devolution agreement and we thought the days were gone when we'd have unilateral decisions made about the North in some faraway place like Ottawa, and that northerners would be making the decisions about issues that affected northerners.
Then premier of Nunavut, Peter Taptuna, shared McLeod's frustrations. He said:
We do want to be getting to a state where we can make our own determination of our priorities, and the way to do that is gain meaningful revenue from resource development.
And at the same time, when one potential sources of revenue is taken off the table, it puts us back at practically Square 1 where Ottawa will make the decision for us.
In my role as shadow minister for transportation, I have had the chance to meet with companies and groups seeking to develop in the north to provide jobs and future prospects to Inuit and other northern Canadians. I heard one phrase repeated over and over again: one big park. Stakeholders told me over and over again that they feel the Liberals do not care about their economic development, but are only interested in making northern Canada one big park even if that means ignoring the will of indigenous peoples.
As I prepared these remarks and delved into Bill C-88, I could not help but see the parallels between the top-down “Ottawa knows best” bill and Bill C-48, the Liberals' ideological oil tanker moratorium act. Bill C-48 is called the oil tanker moratorium act, but everyone knows it is an anti-pipeline bill designed to eliminate any possibility of a pipeline to tidewater through northern British Columbia.
The Prime Minister has a pattern of imposing his will on indigenous groups while still claiming to consult. Just like they did when banning northern development through Bill C-88, the Liberal government pushed ahead on Bill C-48 without consulting indigenous stakeholders.
When testifying at transport committee on Bill C-48, Gary Alexcee, hereditary chief of the Nisga'a Nation for the community of Gingolx, made the following comments about the Liberal government's consultation process:
With no consultation, the B.C. first nations groups being cut off economically with no opportunity to even sit down with the government to further negotiate Bill C-48.
In fact, Eagle Spirit Energy, a first nations owned energy company, is taking the government to court over Bill C-48 because of, among other reasons, the very lack of consultation. In cancelling the northern gateway pipeline, the Prime Minister ignored the input of over 30 first nations along the route who have revenue agreements in place. Again, this is the Liberals' “Ottawa knows best” mentality in practice, yet the Prime Minister continues to claim time and again to consult with indigenous stakeholders.
I oppose this Ottawa-centric anti-Canadian energy industry mentality and it is for that reason that I will be voting against Bill C-88.
View Rosemarie Falk Profile
View Rosemarie Falk Profile
2019-05-15 14:54 [p.27835]
Mr. Speaker, Tides Canada has made it its primary objective to stop the construction of any pipelines in Canada, especially those that would get Canadian energy to new markets. Sarah Goodman served as the vice-president of Tides Canada, and the Prime Minister has just appointed her to be his director of policy.
Our energy sector has taken hit after hit from the current Liberal government and this is another slap in the face to Canadian energy workers. Why did the Prime Minister choose someone who has actively worked to destroy our energy sector to be his director of policy?
View Kevin Waugh Profile
View Kevin Waugh Profile
2019-05-06 18:49 [p.27432]
Mr. Speaker, this past December, I asked the Liberal government an important and straightforward question: When will the Liberal government finally start standing up for the Canadian energy sector and kill Bill C-69, a bill which absolutely suffocates this critical sector with additional regulation burdens and uncertainty? I received the usual Liberal response of another non-answer.
Tonight, I know the Liberals have no intention of backing away from Bill C-69, even though this bill would have a very severe impact on many of the thousands of Canadians who are employed in the energy sector throughout this country. Instead of working to support Canadians, the Liberal government continues to stubbornly persist in working against Canadians.
We know the policies of the Liberal government when it comes to our energy sector, a sector which represented nearly 11% of our country's normal GDP in 2017. The Liberals, we should be reminded, killed the northern gateway pipeline. They stopped the energy east pipeline by piling on the red tape and additional regulations. They passed Bill C-48 in the House to place a moratorium on the traffic of oil tankers along B.C.'s northern coast. They failed to support the construction of the Trans Mountain pipeline. As a result, they had to spend $4.5 billion of taxpayer money to buy the existing Trans Mountain pipeline just to keep the project from collapsing entirely.
It is clear that the Liberals have never had a plan to support the Canadian energy sector. It is clear, through their insistence on passing Bill C-69, that the Liberals do not intend to support our energy sector any time soon.
The Liberal government has a responsibility to look out for the hundreds of thousands of Canadian workers who are employed in the Canadian energy sector, and it is obvious that it is failing to do so. Through the dangerous and reckless policies of the Liberal government, investment in our resource and energy sectors is collapsing like never before. In 2018, Statistics Canada reported capital spending on oil and gas extraction fell for the fourth straight year, decreasing by 12% from the spending of 2017.
Why is the Liberal government doing nothing to protect the livelihoods of the many thousands of hard-working Canadians who actually work in Canada's energy sector? When will the Liberals finally scrap Bill C-69?
View Kevin Waugh Profile
View Kevin Waugh Profile
2019-05-06 18:55 [p.27433]
Mr. Speaker, there is a billboard on Wellington Street just outside West Block, and my office in the Confederation Building which reads, “First nations are opposed to Bill C-69”. I think it is sponsored by the Indigenous Resource Council, which represents over 130 first nations in this country. It is an interesting ad outside the House of Commons.
I should add that the only winners right now are the suppliers of foreign oil, such as Saudi Arabia. Statistics Canada reported that in the last five years, Canadian oil imports from Saudi Arabia have risen over 66%. The real winner is Saudi Arabia. The real losers are indigenous and other Canadians.
View Andrew Scheer Profile
View Andrew Scheer Profile
2019-05-02 14:21 [p.27297]
Mr. Speaker, Canadians have been paying for the broken promises of the Liberal government ever since the 2015 election. That will come to an end in October.
Another area where the Liberal government has completely failed Canadians has been the energy sector. The Conservative record on pipelines has been to see the private sector build four major pipeline projects during our time in office. However, the Liberals have vetoed and killed projects, and now they have purchased a pipeline that they cannot build.
Bill C-69 is the final nail in the coffin. More and more Canadians are speaking out against it. Will they—
View Erin Weir Profile
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-05-01 18:54 [p.27267]
Mr. Speaker, the question that prompts this adjournment debate is with respect to the agenda for a premiers' conference that occurred months ago. I would like to broaden the adjournment debate to talk about the federal government's role in coordinating among provinces. Specifically, I would like to address the new Alberta government's proposal to slash its provincial corporate income tax rate to 8%.
The reason this should be of concern to the Government of Canada is that our federal corporate tax structure includes a 10 percentage point abatement to allow provinces and territories to levy their own corporate taxes. Currently, all provinces have corporate tax rates of around 12%. The only exceptions are in Atlantic Canada, where provinces have slightly higher corporate income tax rates. Therefore, that obviously accounts for the abatement from the federal government.
In proposing to slash Alberta's corporate tax rate to 8%, Jason Kenney is effectively asking the federal government to continue to provide a 10% abatement to companies operating in Alberta, even though they will only pay 8% provincial corporate tax. I do not think this makes sense and I want to suggest that the federal government should not go along with that. The federal government should require that to receive a 10% abatement, a province should be levying a corporate income tax rate of at least 10%.
Why would the federal government want to establish this type of a corporate tax floor for provinces?
The first point is obviously one of common sense. If the federal government has provided an abatement of 10% to allow provincial and territorial corporate taxes, those provincial and territorial corporate taxes should be at least that amount. However, a more fundamental reason is that the federal government should not want to encourage a race to the bottom on corporate taxes.
The federal government has wisely resisted the temptation to engage in such a race to the bottom with the United States. When confronted with the Trump administration's corporate tax cuts, the Government of Canada did not actually cut the federal corporate tax rate in this country. Instead it provided an accelerated depreciation for companies that were making investments in Canada.
Therefore, I do not think it makes any more sense for the federal government to be facilitating a race to the bottom among provinces on corporate taxes. That is exactly what Mr. Kenney is contemplating in proposing an 8% corporate tax rate for Alberta. He has specifically talked about achieving a competitive advantage relative to B.C. and Saskatchewan.
Clearly, the federal government needs to look out not only for Alberta's competitiveness, but also for the competitiveness of its neighbours. Indeed, in preserving our economic union, we should hope that industries will make decisions about where to locate among provinces based on real economic factors, not based on tax differences. It makes the Canadian economy less efficient if companies are moving around between provinces simply to take advantage of lower corporate income tax rates.
In summary, I believe the federal government should make its corporate tax abatement of 10 points contingent on provinces and territories levying corporate taxes of at least that amount.
View Erin Weir Profile
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-05-01 19:01 [p.27268]
Mr. Speaker, I would like to apologize to the parliamentary secretary. It certainly was not my intention to catch anyone off-guard. The question that this adjournment debate was based on was indeed about energy issues on the agenda of the premier's conference. However, since that conference is over, I wanted to speak about another federal-provincial issue that has a big impact on our energy sector, which is Alberta's proposal to slash its corporate income tax rate to 8%.
I certainly do not expect the parliamentary secretary to come up with a snap response to that issue. However, I would encourage the federal government to seriously consider whether it makes sense to continue extending a 10% corporate tax abatement to corporations in Alberta if that provincial government decides to cut its corporate tax rate below that 10% threshold.
This is an important issue for the House to deal with going forward.
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