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RELEASE: BCBC supports NEB decision which provides pipeline safety, supports the BC and Canadian Economies
Thorough process provides next step in achieving needed market access

Vancouver, BC - May 19, 2016 - The Business Council welcomes the decision of the National Energy Board (NEB) today approving, with conditions, the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion project. 

“The approval of this project, after a long and thorough independent process – and despite opposition from some in and outside the province – is a positive development," said Greg D’Avignon, President and CEO of the Business Council. "The NEB carefully reviewed the technical, environmental and social evidence and concluded that the project is safe and provides important benefits for BC and Canada.

“The Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is of vital importance to the Canadian energy sector – our country’s number one export industry.  It is also important for BC, which depends on Alberta for transportation fuels and benefits from Kinder Morgan’s operations in this province through tax contributions, jobs and spin-off business for small and large companies.” 

“Kinder Morgan and its existing pipeline, for over 60 years, have been a safe, reliable, and responsible operator providing energy security and access to markets for Canadian energy products that we often in British Columbia have taken for granted,” noted D’Avignon.  “The approval with conditions, such as the need for a robust marine protection and spills response, will enable that access and the economic benefits to continue. “ 

Building pipeline capacity also allows Canada to meet the growing global demand for energy products using the latest technology and best-in-class environmental protections.  It is worth noting that other oil producing nations that are competing with Canada to serve global energy markets tend to have lower environmental and regulatory standards, including with respect to the marine environment.

“While the NEB process was thorough and rendered a decision that can give greater confidence for other large capital projects in Canada, the fact remains that the existing review process for energy infrastructure projects is too uncertain and takes too long,” D’Avignon commented.  “Capital investment intentions in BC are negative at present, which is concerning for the future. One characteristic of a healthy business climate is a reasonable degree of regulatory certainty and clarity for investors.  Canada still has work to do to meet that test.”

About the Business Council of British Columbia

Celebrating its 50th year as the preeminent business organization in the province, the Council has a strong history of providing relevant public policy research and advice on issues to enhance BC’s competitiveness. Since its inception with founding Chair, JE Richardson, then CEO of BC Telephone Company, the Council has been fortunate to have as members major employers from across all sectors in BC’s economy who have played meaningful roles in building British Columbia.

Today, the Council is a source for insight on the BC and Canadian economies and how international trends and domestic policies are impacting our ability to compete in a global economy. Priority areas of focus include: environmental sustainability policies, economic reconciliation with First Nations, innovation, building a competitive tax and regulatory regime, supporting trade and market access, and the development and the attraction of a deep and diverse talent pool. 

Media Contact
Cheryl Maitland Muir
Business Council of British Columbia
604-696-6582 (direct)
604-812-5965 (cell)
cheryl.muir[at]bcbc.com

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