Thursday, 13 December, 2018

Canada to buy Kinder Morgan pipeline in bid to save project

Live: Feds to spend $4.5 billion to buy Trans Mountain pipeline, B.C. terminal Canada to buy major pipeline to ensure it gets built
Doris Mccormick | 29 May, 2018, 21:32

On Tuesday morning, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced Ottawa would spend $4.5 billion to buy the pipeline expansion, and all of Kinder Morgan Canada's core assets.

Construction will continue through the summer with a federal loan guarantee as the deal is finalized Kinder Morgan and the government will seek a third-party buyer or buyers for the project until July 22.

The two western provinces have been sparring over the pipeline, a situation that Mr Morneau said can not be allowed to "fester".

May, along with New Democrat MP Kennedy Stewart, was arrested March 23 at a Kinder Morgan terminal on Burnaby Mountain protesting the company's plan to twin the Trans Mountain pipeline between Edmonton and Burnaby. It will be a key test of Trudeau's bid to balance the environment and the economy by backing the C$7.4 billion pipeline expansion while pushing a national carbon price to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Trudeau pledges regularly that the pipeline will be built. The government is buying the existing pipeline and the scheduled twinned pipeline expansion.

The federal finance minister said the government does not plan to be the long-term owner of the pipeline and expects the project to be transferred to private sector investors "at an appropriate time".

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The Trans Mountain expansion would nearly triple capacity to 890,000 barrels of oil on a line running from Alberta to a terminal near Vancouver.

The federal government has been in talks with the Texas-based energy infrastructure company for weeks over the future of its controversial Trans Mountain expansion.

On Tuesday morning the federal cabinet convened on Parliament Hill to hear Morneau's plan to move the project forward, with public money.

"The Indigenous-led, people-powered movement that led Kinder Morgan to abandon ship on this project is stronger than ever and will not back down".

Kinder Morgan set the deadline in part due to frustrations with delays caused by the British Columbia government, which is concerned about possible oil spills. Again, all of this makes good financial sense for Canada but it's a bit surprising that Justin Trudeau is willing to directly challenge the environmental left to make this happen. The 980-kilometer (600-mile) expansion is seen by the oil industry as a crucial link to Asian markets, allowing producers to diversify away from the US, which takes the vast majority of Canadian oil exports.

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