STOP: Stop Tar Sands Operations Permanently

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Stelmach and Wall further bury their head in the tar sands

Posted by mhudema on June 22, 2008

Stelmach, Wall issue warning on cap-and-trade
Jason Fekete
Calgary Herald
Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach and Saskatchewan's Brad Wall warn cap-and-trade could hurt their provinces' economies.
CREDIT: Herald Archive photo
Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach and Saskatchewan’s Brad Wall warn cap-and-trade could hurt their provinces’ economies.

PRINCE ALBERT, Sask. – The leaders of Alberta and Saskatchewan warned today that their provincial colleagues and the federal government should refrain from pushing environmental policies that could cripple the West – a region driving the entire Canadian economy.

Premier Ed Stelmach and Saskatchewan’s Brad Wall told reporters at the western premiers conference that a national cap-and-trade program or federal carbon tax would inflict economic pain on the West’s resource-based economies that are creating jobs and wealth for the entire country.

Stelmach said a national carbon tax similar to one already introduced in British Columbia would increase the cost of energy, reduce Alberta’s competitiveness around the world and have a negative trickle-down effect across Canada.

“The western provinces are really supporting Canada’s economy right now, so why would we want to move further and diminish our competitiveness and hurt the Canadian economy?” Stelmach said.

Wall echoed those concerns, saying workers in Central Canada who’ve fallen on hard times – due to battered automobile and manufacturing sectors – are looking West for hope and jobs.

“Let’s not pursue national policies that will restrict the opportunity or the growth of the parts of the Canadian economy that are working very well in Western Canada. Those are national opportunities,” Wall said.

Premiers from Canada’s four western provinces and three territories are meeting in Prince Albert, Sask. for three days of meetings focussed on sustainable growth, with energy and the environment key issues being discussed.

British Columbia and Manitoba, along with the federal Conservative government and at least three other provinces are pushing a national cap-and-trade emissions reduction program that’s being resisted by Alberta and Saskatchewan.

Manitoba, however, sides with Wild Rose Country and the Land of Living Skies in opposing a carbon tax.
U.S. Ambassador to Canada David Wilkins is joining premiers today for a discussion on border security, and oil and gas development in Canada and the United States.

jfekete@theherald.canwest.com

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