Wall blames Carr for feds' 'full Venezuela' on Trans Mountain
Brad Wall says he is not sad to see Jim Carr removed from his post as natural resources minister.
Speaking to BNN Bloomberg Wednesday, the former Saskatchewan premier didn’t mince words and placed much of the blame for the government’s $4.5-billion purchase of the Trans Mountain pipeline from Kinder Morgan on Carr.
“The fact that the only way we got a pipeline, moving forward, the one we just talked about, is that the government had to go ‘full Venezuela’ to get it done? We backed away from [Northern Gateway]? And Energy East?” Wall said.
“I think we needed a natural resources minister – and need one still – at the table.”
Wall also said Carr should have been more active in preventing National Energy Board rule changes that were instituted last August, which required a review of both upstream and downstream greenhouse emissions from the Energy East pipeline project. Wall cited the change as a prime reason for why the project was ultimately shelved.
“It happened in the middle of a project that already had headwinds and, notwithstanding what’s been said publicly, I think it’s fair to say that those changes caused that pipeline to be shelved,” Wall said.
“That’s a huge loss to the country. It’s a loss to my province and I just think if you consider the state of our natural resource sector, the amount of investment that’s moved from our energy sector to the U.S. energy sector, and investment that’s been lost, part of that is the responsibility of the natural resources minister.”
Wall expressed optimism that Carr’s replacement, Amarjeet Sohi, comes from both the infrastructure file (having served as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Minister of Infrastructure and Communities since 2015) and also happens to represent an Edmonton riding.
“My former government, I think, had a positive experience,” Wall said, with regards to working with Sohi as infrastructure minister. “You don’t get everything [you] want when you deal with an infrastructure minister federally, but I think the minister is earnest and engaged. That was my experience.
“I’m hoping he brings that, and [an] Alberta sensibility, a positive natural resource sensibility to the file.”