Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Pipeline Plight: Carr Confident Feds Will Convince Kinder Morgan to Proceed

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Pipeline Plight: Carr Confident Feds Will Convince Kinder Morgan to Proceed

Article excerpt

Carr confident of end to pipeline plight

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OTTAWA - Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr says he is absolutely certain Canada and Kinder Morgan will come to a financial agreement that will convince the pipeline builder to proceed with the Trans Mountain expansion before a May 31 deadline.

Speaking at a Canadian Global Affairs Institute conference Tuesday, Carr said it was understandable that the threat of "endless court action" gave Kinder Morgan's investors pause about proceeding with the project, which would triple the capacity of the existing Trans Mountain pipeline between Edmonton and Burnaby, B.C.

Ottawa green-lighted the expansion in November 2016, but a month ago the company hit pause on all non-essential spending on the project, saying ongoing opposition in British Columbia and the threat of legal delays was making it rethink moving forward.

The company gave Ottawa until the end of May to convince it there is confidence to proceed.

"We're working towards a pretty hard deadline and people are working diligently away at it," said Carr.

"I'm confident there will be a solution."

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau interrupted a foreign trip to return to Ottawa and meet the premiers of B.C. and Alberta to try and solve the matter, after which he said he had dispatched Finance Minister Bill Morneau to come to a financial agreement with Kinder Morgan to help alleviate the risk to investors so that the project can move ahead.

Carr said everyone knows the government and the company have just a few more weeks to find a way for Ottawa to help alleviate investor jitters.

"We have to have more to announce in the next few weeks," said Carr.

There are three weeks until the deadline, but Conservative natural resources critic Shannon Stubbs says there are only 12 days left for the government to introduce its promised legislation reasserting federal authority to approve and build the pipeline. …

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