Alberta Minute: Oil Prices, Pipeline Delays, and Free Speech Restrictions
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
- The Legislature is due to resume sitting this week. For the last four weeks, the Legislature has forgone Monday sittings, in favour of sitting only on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday in the morning, afternoon, and evening. We expect this trend will continue this week.
- There are currently three bills at Second Reading (Bill 1, Bill 2, and Bill 4) where they've been parked since February, and three Bills at Committee of the Whole (Bill 3, Bill 8, and Bill 13). The order paper does not lay out a plan for passing these bills yet.
- The provincial government's budget continues to look more and more precarious with oil prices likely to take another massive tumble this morning. Futures markets are currently showing the price of WTI under USD $15 and WCS under USD $3.00 at the time of writing. For short periods of time on Sunday, WCS prices dropped as low as 22c on some benchmarks, and to *minus* 78c on others.
Last Week In Alberta:
- The federal government announced plans to restrict free speech and punish those spreading "misinformation". Media reports say the Bill is still in the planning stage, so details about how exactly it might work are sparse, but all Albertans should be very concerned about any restrictions to our rights, whether from the federal or provincial government. If you haven't signed our petition against this Bill yet, you can do so here.
The federal government announced plans to spend $1.7 billion to help clean up orphaned wells in Western Canada, with up to $1 billion of that sum directed specifically at Alberta. However, the money comes with strings attached which are said to include tougher environmental regulations.
- Finally, a U.S. federal judge dealt yet another blow to the Keystone XL pipeline by invalidating a key U.S. Army Corps of Engineers clean water permit, which is needed for the pipeline to cross rivers, streams and other waterways.TC Energy are "reviewing the ruling".
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