12/05/2016 11:31 EST | Updated 12/05/2016 11:31 EST

Newly Approved Pipelines Prioritize Environment And Economy

Chris Helgren / Reuters
Crude oil tanks at Kinder Morgan's terminal are seen in Sherwood Park, near Edmonton, Alberta, Canada November 13, 2016. REUTERS/Chris Helgren

This is how we build pipelines.

On Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016, our nation's cabinet and the government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau approved Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain Expansion Project and the Enbridge Line 3 refurbishment.

Following broad consultation with Canadians and Indigenous peoples, a clear message emerged -- that energy and the environment are both sides of the same coin. We have put a price on carbon, we have thousands of good jobs for Albertans and Canadians while putting billions into the Canadian economy. By pulling together the needs of the environment and the need for economic growth for the middle class, we will expand our markets and build this nation.

After pounding the pavement in the election, earning the trust of Calgary Centre and taking the movement to Ottawa, we pounded the table for a better way forward.

After a decade of inaction, we are finally seeing progress.

Calgarians and Albertans alike have been waiting for this announcement for a long time. After a decade of inaction, we are finally seeing progress on this file thanks to the leadership of our prime minister and my cabinet colleagues. We are moving forward on Canada's energy future and we will continue to engage with local communities and indigenous groups so that we ensure that economic benefits are enjoyed by all Canadians, and environmental protections strong and enforced.

To change the carbon conversation we are investing in a carbon pricing strategy. Preston Manning, Suncor and Shell Canada have all voiced their support for this approach. Eighty per cent of Canadians already live in a province where there is effective pricing on carbon pollution, but more action is needed and we are taking those steps. Pricing carbon is a good idea, and one that has clear, broad support from coast to coast.

To demonstrate our commitment to environmental protection, we are putting $1.5 billion into an Oceans Protection Plan and instituting a moratorium on tanker traffic in Northern B.C. -- not only to safeguard our coasts, but also to preserve their beauty, promote local ocean-related industries, and the health of Canadians.

This is in addition to trade corridors funding, re-establishing the many coastal protection plans, reinvesting in the scientific capacity of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, and demonstrating our commitment to climate action and the innovation economy through direct investments like the $75 million to the University of Calgary for research in to sustainable low-carbon resources. Our focus is on taking real, concrete and lasting action to reduce our emissions, grow our economy and create good, middle-class jobs.

Finally, our mandate from the 2015 election was to reform the National Energy Board and we are doing so with gusto. Our regulatory systems must be governed by experts, reflect regional views, bring in the environmental sciences, involve community development experts, and integrate traditional Indigenous knowledge. Please stay tuned for more information in the coming months and years on our work on this file.

While our path is clear, our job is not yet done. Thank you for allowing me to be the representative for Calgary Centre. I am honoured to work every day for the betterment of our country alongside Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and in ensuring that we move to a prosperous, innovative future.

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