Environmentalists are slamming Canadian Prime Minister Justin TrudeauJustin Pierre James TrudeauChina frees two Canadians following release of Huawei executive Equilibrium/Sustainability — Presented by The American Petroleum Institute — Climate change turning US into coffee country Canadian police: Man assaulted nurse for vaccinating his wife MORE for his government’s approval of two controversial pipeline projects.
The government on Tuesday approved two pipeline proposals from Kinder Morgan and Enbridge, Inc. designed to transport oil from Alberta’s tar sands to export terminals on the Pacific Coast and in the United States. Trudeau denied another proposal from Enbridge on environmental grounds.
"The decision we took today is the one that is in the best interests of Canada," Trudeau said on Tuesday, CBC News reported. "It is a major win for Canadian workers, for Canadian families and the Canadian economy, now and into the future."
But environmentalists in both the United States and Canada oppose the projects, especially Kinder Morgan’s $6.8 billion project to transport up to 890,000 barrels of oil per day.
“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has decided to value short-term profits over the long-term health of the Pacific Northwest’s people, climate and orcas,” Marcie Keever, Friends of the Earth’s oceans and vessels program director, said in a statement.
Jane Kleeb, the president of Bold Alliance and a leading anti-pipeline activists in the United States, criticized Trudeau for approving the pipelines despite his commitments to addressing climate change.
“Trudeau should be ashamed today using middle class workers as cover to wreak havoc on our water, climate and property rights,” she said.
Activists also opposed the approval of Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline, which would carry oil from Alberta to northern Minnesota and Wisconsin. Regulators in Minnesota approved an environmental review process for the $2.6 pipeline in October.
“The Canadian approval of Line 3 is a slap in the face to the landowners and indigenous community members of North Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin, who will work harder than ever to make sure this dirty tar sands pipeline does not cross into the United States,” Andy Pearson, the midwest tar sands coordinator at MN350, said.
Despite the opposition, Trudeau and the pipeline giants said the projects will create thousands of jobs and billions in tax and royalty revenue.
“This is a defining moment for our project and Canada’s energy industry,” Kinder Morgan Canada President Ian Anderson said in a statement.
“This decision follows many years of engagement and the presentation of the very best scientific, technical and economic information. We are excited to move forward and get this project built, for the benefit of our customers, communities and all Canadians."