Canada to buy Kinder Morgan pipeline project assets


"Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is making a historic mistake in buying the doomed Kinder Morgan project", Adam Scott, senior adviser at Oil Change International (OCI), said in a statement denouncing Trudeau's decision, which comes just weeks after fierce opposition from Indigenous groups and environmentalists forced the oil giant to halt construction operations.

The purchase, for 4.5 billion Canadian dollars, ensures that the Trans Mountain pipeline, which carries oil from Alberta to a port in a suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia, will begin a planned expansion this summer.

Horgan says the federal government's decision to take over the pipeline from Kinder Morgan doesn't change his government's position and it will proceed with its reference case to the B.C. Court of Appeal.

Morneau said the plan is to eventually seek a sale of forthcoming new Crown Corporation to investors.

Bill Morneau, minister of finance, alongside Jim Carr, minister of natural resources, announced this morning that the federal government has purchased the Trans Mountain pipeline system and expansion project (TMEP) for $4.5 billion.

The federal government has been in talks with the Texas-based energy infrastructure company for weeks over the future of its controversial Trans Mountain expansion. Morneau said those would be covered on a "user pay" basis but he did not specify how much that tab could run to.

After it completes the project, Canada plans to sell the pipeline.

Kinder Morgan Canada will continue to hold an integrated network of crude tank storage and rail terminals in Alberta, the company said.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau made the announcement this morning.

The government was immediately slammed from all sides for its stunning move.

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Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers president Tim McMillan said it was "great news" that Ottawa was prepared to "step up to clear the path to construction" and ensure Trans Mountain had full political and financial support.

"This move sets a bad precedent and signals to other prospective investors that large projects such as pipelines can not be built by private industry in Canada", said Aaron Wudrick, federal director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, a right-leaning group that advocates for lower taxes.

"It's the kind of epic disaster of the last century I couldn't imagine a modern government doing, but that's exactly what we are doing", May said.

"While we are going to save the vital pipeline and the thousands of jobs that come with it, today's decision highlights how much damage has been done to our global reputation".

Kinder Morgan Canada gave Ottawa until May 31 to come up with reassurances it could press ahead with plans to more than double the capacity of the existing pipeline amid efforts by the province of British Columbia to block construction.

Numerous indigenous groups also oppose the project, though a number of First Nations have signed on to the expansion project.

Canada approved the project in November 2016, following an expanded environmental review process that included additional consultations with Indigenous communities and assessing the amount of additional emissions likely to result from additional production.

He said he learned of the decision to buy the pipeline in a 5:45 a.m. phone call from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Canada loses $15 billion every year on the sale of oil because the US remains its only export customer, resulting in a lower price, Trudeau argues.

The project will duplicate an existing 1,150km pipeline, allowing it to ship up to 890,000 barrels of oil a day from landlocked Alberta to the Pacific coast of neighbouring British Columbia, in western Canada, for export overseas. "Investing in this pipeline is like investing in the horse and buggy industry at the advent of the vehicle".