In Parliament: Question Period Jan 26 on Keystone and Line 5

I asked Natural Resources Minister Seamus O'Regan two questions in Question Period on January 26, 2021, on Keystone and Line 5. Text of the exchange:


Mr. Greg McLean (Calgary Centre, CPC): Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister talks a big game, but he is collecting failures at every turn. He is failing on indigenous reconciliation, failing on the environment and failing on job creation when he fails to support Keystone XL with the new U.S. administration. Everyone knows pipelines are safer and cleaner than rail to transport oil and gas.

    Designed as net-zero emissions, Keystone XL ticked all the boxes, yet the Prime Minister could not find it in his schedule to make it a priority. Why did he not fight for the Canadian workers who depend on these jobs?

    Hon. Seamus O’Regan (Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we are not happy about this decision. We made a strong argument for this project at every level and in every way we could, from Ambassador Hillman to the Prime Minister. I spoke weekly with Minister Savage and the former member for Edmonton—Leduc, Alberta's special representative in Washington, James Rajotte. We worked together all through the fall. The Government of Canada and the Government of Alberta stood shoulder to shoulder to make the case together. We made the case for Canada and the president has made a decision to honour his campaign commitment.

    Mr. Greg McLean (Calgary Centre, CPC): Mr. Speaker, we know when the Prime Minister wants a file to go his way by the effort he puts into it, such as SNC-Lavalin, when he bent every rule to save jobs at one company. Surely Keystone XL workers deserve more than a quick chat.

    Canada is facing another energy crisis. This one could hit Ontario and Quebec hard. Michigan wants to kill Enbridge Line 5. This pipeline supplies Ontario's and Quebec's industries on which thousands of workers and their families depend. Will the government stop sitting on its hands or are we going to add another trophy to the Prime Minister's failure collection?

    Hon. Seamus O’Regan (Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, President Biden's decision to rescind the permit for KXL has no impact on Enbridge's Line 5 or Line 3 replacement projects. These pipelines continue to operate. These are projects to modernize existing energy infrastructure. They are driven by safety and good labour jobs. Both of these projects have been repeatedly validated by the U.S. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.