City council supports Energy East pipeline

  • Mar. 16, 2016 2:53 p.m.

Red Deer City council has approved a resolution that endorses the Energy East pipeline project.

Energy East, a national infrastructure project, will transport oil to refineries and coastal ports. This project is undergoing a federal regulatory review through the National Energy Board (NEB). There are 16 points of review the NEB will consider based on evidence and testimony to the panel. These include economic benefit, safety and security, emergency preparedness, impact to landowners, impact to indigenous communities, environmental, social, and economic impacts.

The Government of Alberta has indicated its support for Energy East and the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association (AUMA) has called on its member municipalities to, “Show support for this essential market access initiative that is the key to Canada’s future economic outcomes.”

Council indicated they support that advocacy work.

Last week, Mayor Tara Veer attended the Alberta Mayors’ Caucus as part of the AUMA conference.

“The board at AUMA was looking to bring it forward so that Alberta’s message would be brought forward across the country from a municipal perspective,” said Veer. “Because there were other communities in the east that were vocal against the pipeline, AUMA felt a sense of responsibility to convey a position on the issue from an Alberta perspective.

“They were looking for the solidarity of their membership and in response to the Mayors’ Caucus last week, Alberta mayors were choosing to bring it forward to various municipalities across the province.”

Council supported the motion to endorse the Energy East pipeline project.

“The vote of council was unanimous in recognition of the fact that Alberta’s economy has a strong impact and is an economic driver of the entire country,” said Veer. “Even though our local economy has diversified substantially since the last recession, we recognize the community that we serve still has very strong roots in the oil and gas sector and we need to do what we can do help get our citizens back to work.”

Now, the resolution supported by council will be submitted to the premier’s office as well as the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.

“This is important because there are mayors in the east that are vocal on the issue at hand and it was important to convey our position.”

efawcett@reddeerexpress.com

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