Alberta Renews ‘Turn Off the Taps’ Legislation Blocked by Court

Alberta is reviving legislation previously blocked by a federal court that would allow the province to curtail oil and gas shipments to other provinces in retaliation for efforts to restrict pipelines.

If passed by the legislature, the new measure would go into force retroactively on May 1, replacing a 2018 bill meant to restrict oil shipments to British Columbia after the province tried to halt the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline. The new legislation is narrower in scope, and would exclude refined fuels from transport limits. While a federal court blocked the prior bill from going into effect, an appeals court overturned that ruling last month.

Alberta has battled with B.C. and other provinces over plans to build new oil pipelines to bring the province’s land-locked crude to the coast for export. B.C. failed to stop the start of construction of the Trans Mountain Expansion, that would boost oil exports to the Vancouver area, but opposition from Canadian provinces including Quebec did contribute to the cancellation, in 2017, of TC Energy Corp.’s Energy East pipeline project to the Atlantic coast.

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