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    MLA report February 8

    Hello Chestermere! Did you know that we as a province-here in Alberta, that we were going to be purchasing electricity from the Site C Dam in BC?  Did you know this was part of the deal to get pipelines to tide water, and part of the social license that would get our product to tide water? What ever happened to standing up for our province and our resources based on our own record of excellent resource stewardship, or letting Albertans know that we were now going to be purchasing our electricity from a province that has put up every barrier known to man, trying to stop hundreds of thousands of barrels a day from making it to tide water?  This is news to me, I thought I knew at least a little bit about what was going on in the world.  Obviously this government had an agenda, and one that we have been trying to figure out for some time, and “Whoops” there it is!  We wondered about why they were willing to break Power Purchase Agreements, without even a second glance, and why legislation was created that literally took the accountability out of the language that holds the government accountable for the balancing pool and the lack of utility debt in this province.  We knew that there was a smoke screen, and now the fog has lifted.
    Did you know that pipelines have 4.5 times fewer accidents and or spills (stated in the Huffington Post) than any other form of transportation?  Did you know that if there is a little shut down in supply coming from Edmonton to the interior of BC, that gas stations will run out?  Pipelines are the best, most green and efficient way of transferring our natural resources to tide water.  It is the safest way to transport Hydrocarbons.  It is practical, it is efficient and it is environmentally the best option. 
    Did you know that our drilling rigs are moving to the USA?  They are moving and they are not returning to us.  Based on the BOE report from January 31 of this year, the investment climate in the US is much more appealing, and they are willing to move mountains south of the border to have our rigs!
    The cumulative tax burden in Canada, and especially Alberta is seeing our prosperity flee to other jurisdictions.  The United States is lowering taxes, and guess what!  They are going to start to export oil soon.  Talk about missing the boat–no pun intended!  This along with lack of market access is keeping us from getting world price for our resources. 
    And where is the Prime Minister in all of this?  He hides behind the rhetoric of sort of saying that maybe the pipelines will be built.  I would like someone to explain to me why BC is controlling national prosperity?  The Federal Government has the absolute authority to ensure this pipeline is built. Why is he not acting? Oh but perhaps you have seen the nonsensical economic analysis that comes from environmental activists stating that the carbon tax along with giving us social license will also bring economic growth.  I think I would give credit to the recent growth to the resilience in this province and that oil prices are on the rise.  Congratulations to you my fellow Albertans for your can-do attitude, and for working as hard as you do. 
    And what about our Premier?  Well I am happy to see her actually talk about consequences for BC and their actions in stopping our products get to tide water, however, we need to be vocal and persistent with the federal government.  We cannot stand down.  I wonder sometimes why governments make it so impossible for pipelines to be built.  We see the costs go up as a result of delays.  This increases the cost to do business, causes a loss of investment, and tax increase.  Is this the plan?  To do as much damage to the industry as possible so everyone leaves, or so it cannot bounce back?
    Environmental activists who are funded by US foundations say they believe that the only way to reduce the usage of fossil fuels is severe increases in price, and lack of investment.  They don’t seem to oppose US Pipelines. It is interesting isn’t it?
    I would like the to thank the Strathmore Wheatland Kings for inviting me to their awesome event this week.  I was also privileged to be a judge in the 4H speech competition this weekend.  There is so much talent in this constituency.  I am always so humbled by our volunteers and organizers. I also attended the seniors meeting, the Harry Potter night at the library and the Chamber of Commerce Business Survey results presentation as well as meeting with the amazing folks at Calgary Communities Against Sexual Abuse (CCASA).  From their site:  they are the primary sexual abuse and sexual assault crisis and education service provider for Calgary and surrounding areas. Their organization exists because sexual violence is a crime that is prevalent in our society and impacts a significant number of people. CCASA strives to enhance the health and well being of all people and our broader community through responsible and effective programs in sexual abuse education, research and advocacy, crisis intervention and counselling. Finally, I along with all of you will mourn the loss of our dear friend Brian Wood.  He was an amazing and compassionate person who gave back so much to our community.  He will be missed. 
    As always we love to hear from you.