OTTAWA – A federal bill banning tanker traffic on B.C.’s north coast has been defeated by a Senate committee, which is welcome news to politicians who opposed it.
The Senate’s Standing Committee on Transportation and Communication recommended the Liberal government scrap Bill C-48, which would forbid ships carrying more than 12,500 tonnes of crude oil from loading or unloading between the northern tip of Vancouver Island and the Alaska border.
Alberta Senator Doug Black says it is a good day for Alberta and Canada.
“This bill intended to further limit the ability to produce product from the oilsands and it’s wrong for Alberta, it’s wrong for Canada and it needs to be stopped and I’m very grateful that the senate committee recognized that,” Black says.
Black points out however, that this decision does not mean the bill is dead as it needs approval from the entire Senate.
If the committee’s report is rejected, senators will continue to debate the bill and then vote whether it should advance.
Black says he is hopeful that it will not get to that point.
“But if we do, we will make the same arguments to the full senate that we made to the committee, that this is bad legislation, it is discriminatory. It serves no purpose other than hurting Alberta,” he says.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney is also giving his praise to the recommendation, calling it a victory for common sense and economic growth.
Very pleased that the Senate Transport Committee has voted to defeat the Trudeau Tanker Ban Bill C-48. This is a victory for common sense & economic growth. Thank-you to Senators for listening to Albertans & respecting fairness in our federation!
— Jason Kenney (@jkenney) May 16, 2019
Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley, who lobbied against the bill when in government, is also glad that the recommendations have come forward.
Very pleased to see the Standing Senate Committee on Transport and Communications has recommended against proceeding with Bill C-48, the flawed Tanker Ban Bill. Our Gov't was clear that the bill needed to be tossed out. A good day for Alberta. #ableg #abenergy https://t.co/6co4lEFh2r
— Rachel Notley (@RachelNotley) May 16, 2019