There's no great mystery about why Canada’s oil and gas sector is falling behind.
(This column originally appeared in the Toronto Sun)
By: Candice Malcolm
The Trudeau government is spending $280,000 to study why Canada’s oil and gas sector is falling behind. Folks online were quick to propose a better way to answer this question: someone hand Justin Trudeau a mirror! (Who are we kidding, it’s Justin Trudeau, he probably owns thousands of mirrors).
In all seriousness, if our Prime Minister really wants to understand why there is less investment in Canada’s oil and gas sector, he should look no further than his own policies.
The Trudeau government has hardly been an ally to the oil and gas sector in Western Canada.
Trudeau has interfered with and had a hand in cancelling major pipeline projects, including Northern Gateway and Energy East, and he hasn’t done enough to stop radical environmentalists from interfering with approved projects like Trans Mountain pipeline.
Trudeau was in British Columbia this week, and didn’t bother meeting with B.C. Premier John Horgan — the man holding our confederation hostage by proposing shipping limits on oil exports.
Aside from Trudeau’s lackluster attitude towards getting our natural resources to market, his government is driving up the cost of living in Canada — making life more expansive and shaking investor confidence.
Just look at Trudeau’s carbon taxes — a cockamamie scheme to intentionally drive up heating costs and consumer prices for Canadians, rammed down our throats without even coherent explanation for its necessity.
During a committee hearing last month, Trudeau’s environment minister Catherine McKenna failed to answer basic questions from Conservative MP Robert Sopuck about the tax, specifically: how much will Canada’s C02 emissions be reduced as a result of Trudeau’s $50 per tonne carbon tax?
McKenna couldn’t provide a number, and digressed into partisan talking points, leading Sopuck to conclude that “(Canadians) will be asked to pay a $50 carbon tax — probably increased over time — and there is absolutely no measurement of what the environmental benefit will be.”
Tax hikes and obtuse politics aren’t the only roadblocks the Liberals are throwing in front of our economy.
In February, the Liberals drastically increased the amount of red tape requirements on natural resources projects. On top of studying the impact of wildlife and plants in a project area, Trudeau is now requiring oil and gas companies to study “the intersection of sex and gender with other identity factors.”
Using the Marxist academic concept of “intersectionality” in assessing natural resource projects has dumbfounded even Trudeau’s allies. “If you’re asking, ‘What does that mean?’ I’m going to have to say, I don’t really know,” said a lawyer with the Canadian Environmental Law Association.
Chris Bloomer, CEO of the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association, stated his concerns over Canada’s burdensome regulatory policies during a recent Parliamentary committee hearing: “It is difficult to imagine that a new major pipeline could be built in Canada under the Impact Assessment Act, much less attract energy investment into Canada,” said Bloomer.
The Trudeau Liberals are intentionally driving up the cost of living through carbon taxes, without even a ballpark estimate for emission reduction. They’ve introduced stifling new regulations, turned a blind eye to political feuds that destabilize our economy, and allowed radical foreign-funded environmentalist groups to set their climate agenda.
Trudeau has failed to champion Canada’s natural resources, and let it be known that he wants to “phase out” Canada’s oil and gas sector.
Trudeau doesn’t need to spend $280,000 to find out why Canada’s oil and gas sector is failing. He needs to reconsider his policies.