Alberta takes out full-page ads in B.C. over strained relationship

It’s the latest move between the two provinces over progress on Trans Mountain pipeline expansion

  • Feb. 21, 2018 6:30 p.m.

The Alberta government has taken out full page ads in some B.C. newspapers, mocking the “left coast” despite stating within that both provinces still share many common goals.

“We used to be so close,” read the main headline below a map of Canada, which featured B.C. floating away from the rest of the country. The ad was also posted to the Province of Alberta’s website.

It’s the latest move in what has become a frosty relationship after B.C. halted progress on the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion and Alberta responded by banning the import of B.C. wine.

READ MORE: Horgan won’t retaliate in pipeline feud with Alberta

The ads list off a number of goals Alberta has undertaken to combat climate change, introduce carbon pricing, and phase out coal power in response to B.C.’s proposal to restrict shipments of diluted bitumen in favour of more studies into the risk of oil spills, and the decision to appeal a federal decision that would let the pipeline bypass local regulations.

“The federal government recognized these actions when it approved the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion, which laid the foundation for our national climate plan,” the ads read.

“The B.C. government is now trying to break the rules of Confederation and ignore the national climate plan, choosing to agree with only parts of the federal decision.”

READ MORE: BC files challenge to Alberta wine trade ban

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley has been a strong advocate for the expansion project that could generate in excess of $46.7 billion in federal revenue over the next 20 years — including more than $5 billion in B.C.

The ads go on: “Pipelines are the safest, greenest, most cost-effective way to move oil to market. They also happen to be a federal responsibility.”

B.C. Premier John Horgan has said the proposal to limit bitumen shipments was not meant to be provocative, but instead aimed to protect B.C.’s environment and economy.

Ottawa has already approved the project, which would triple the capacity of the pipeline from Edmonton to Burnaby and increase tanker traffic off the west coast sevenfold.

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