Conservative leaders attend a rally against Bill C-69 in Saskatchewan

Last week, Conservative leaders from across Canada met in Moosomin, Saskatchewan to protest Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s policies and approach to energy and the environment, including the controversial Bill C-69. The Premiers of Saskatchewan and New Brunswick joined federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer on a panel of speakers at the event held to draw attention to legislation that would overhaul how major energy projects are reviewed.

Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe called C-69 “the no more pipelines bill” and told the crowd of hundreds in southeastern Saskatchewan that “We have a very thorough process that does work. What we need is a federal government that supports our resource industries across this nation. Unfortunately, what we have is a federal government that is pressing forward with Bill C-69.”

Rally organizer Sinclair Harrison said if the bill passes it would be detrimental to future pipeline development and hoped the event would encourage TransCanada to reapply to build Energy East, a pipeline that would have transported oil from Alberta and Saskatchewan to New Brunswick and Quebec, a CAD $15.7 billion project that the company scrapped in 2017 due to the political environment. Energy East would have featured a tank terminal in Moosomin, near where the rally is taking place, and there were plans for additional pipelines to be built further south. “We’re here to speak for the silent majority that are in favour of pipelines,” said Mr. Harrison.

Mr. Harrison said the area already sees tax revenue coming in from the existing TransCanada mainline and is reaping the benefits from construction taking place on another nearby pipeline. “The more pipelines, the better off we are,” he said, “If everyone could see the economic benefit that these construction companies have on the area, it’s phenomenal.

Attendee Marlene Spear said she believes more pipelines are needed because it is safer than moving oil by rail, saying, “My son-in-law’s actually out today at a train derailment so travelling the oil and gas across our country by train is not necessarily any safer than travelling it though a pipeline.” The rally aligned with the timing of a truck convoy that started in Red Deer, Alberta heading for Ottawa to protest in support of the energy sector.

Mr. Scheer vowed that if elected in October, he would repeal Bill C-69, if it passed, but his government’s first job would be to scrap the carbon tax.