Red Deer city council adds its voice to growing call for federal action on pipelines

Large pro-pipeline rally planned for Rocky this weekend

Red Deer city council is joining an Alberta-wide call, demanding Prime Minister Justin Trudeau take action to help the slumping oilpatch by starting the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion in 2019.

“The federal government needs to govern in the interest of all Canadians,” said Mayor Tara Veer, who’s among thousands of Albertans who feel getting Alberta oil to international markets is in the national interest.

This same message will be sent by the 500 central Albertans expected at a rally Saturday in Rocky Mountain House. It’s described as a “fight to revive our economy” by organizers Stephen Petersen and Chad Miller, who are upset about the “devastating price drop” of oil, as determined by the U.S. market.

“It’s not only crippling our economy, but our families, our jobs, our province and our nation,” they state. “The future of our industry is at stake. We must get a pipeline built and gain market access in 2019.”

The rally is set for 2 to 4 p.m. at the Lou Soppit Community Centre in Rocky Mountain House. Speakers will “explain the importance of getting Alberta back on track.”

This rising frustration is being heard by Red Deer city council, which while it is limited in the action it can take in support of such infrastructure projects, is endorsing a letter from the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association.

It calls on Trudeau, “who has ultimate jurisdiction on inter-provincial trade,” to deal with an issue that is “crucial to our Confederation.”

The letter urges Ottawa to take a “broad national view,” given the often competing nature of provincial interests.

Federal responsibility to protect the national interest is “one of the bedrocks of our great nation, and why your support and intervention is so critical,” continues the letter, which recognizes Trudeau’s attempts to move the project forward.

Unlike many Albertans, Red Deer city council does not blame the federal Liberals for not being resolute enough to champion the pipeline project that was stymied by a court ruling last August.

“Look back 20 years,” said Coun. Frank Wong, and Conservative governments did not have the vision to expand pipelines, even though the oil industry was then booming.

Wong believes it’s vital to push for pipelines now “because we’re at a stalemate. The U.S. is controlling how much our oil and gas is worth” and Canadian oil needs more markets.

Coun. Buck Buchanan said he could better understand B.C.’s environmental resistance if this was a brand-new pipeline, but it’s a twinning project that’s already gone through a rigorous approval process.

“Make it happen,” Buchanan demands of Ottawa — or risk sending the message that Canadian interests can be tied up in legal red tape.

Coun. Dianne Wyntjes said city council knows many Red Deerians are financially struggling.

While it’s important to diversify the economy with renewable energy projects, this will not happen overnight — nor will motorists stop needing gas anytime soon, she added. Meanwhile, “people are hoping something will happen so they can go back to work…

“It’s not a matter of either-or… We need pipelines and we need renewable energy,” said Wyntjes.

But Alberta mostly needs optimism — which will come from governments easing the current recession, with a vision to the future, she added.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Family says five found dead after Alberta fire were couple and their grandkids

ROCHFORT BRIDGE, Alta. — The family of five people whose bodies were… Continue reading

Rescue dogs come to Canada in search of forever families

There were dozens of dogs in the back of the van travelling… Continue reading

WATCH: Parkland Garden Centre hosts weekly Craft and Market Sale

A weekly event hosted by the Parkland Nurseries Garden Centre gives Red… Continue reading

Red Deer region’s unemployment drops in November

Provincially and Canada-wide November jobless rate increased

Red Deer loses out on funding for addiction clinic

$8 million divided among eight communities

Fashion Fridays: Ethical and sustainable gifts for the season

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Your community calendar

Friday The Annual Old-Fashioned Country Christmas is being held Dec. 13 at… Continue reading

Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week

TORONTO — Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world… Continue reading

Google taps into Montreal’s rich gaming industry for first-party Stadia content

Sebastien Puel has seen Montreal evolve into a game development powerhouse over… Continue reading

Man dead after lengthy standoff with RCMP at home northeast of Calgary

COCHRANE, Alta. — A man in Alberta has died after an officer… Continue reading

Turkey trouble: Quebec village looks to dump wild bird running afoul in town

MONTREAL — In the small Quebec town of St-Prosper-de-Champlain — population 552… Continue reading

“Anne with an E” creator says show won’t be revived despite fan petition

TORONTO — The creator of the CBC/Netflix drama series “Anne with an… Continue reading

Woman, 58, dies after two vehicles collide with the same deer

NEEPAWA, Man. — RCMP say a 58-year-old woman is dead after a… Continue reading

B.C. treaty commissioner expects UNDRIP bill to speed treaty talks, more deals

VICTORIA — The often bumpy and slow path toward treaty making in… Continue reading

Most Read