Premiers from all parties and all regions joined Canadian Doctors for Medicare today in writing a prescription for the Federal Government: a national drug plan for Canadians.
“It includes a clear recognition on the part of all 13 provincial and territorial leaders of the important role the energy industry plays to the Canadian economy, the hundreds of thousands of jobs that are linked to it and the need to be able to safely and responsibly transport our energy across the country”, Notley said in a conference call.
– $15/hour minimum wage across the country; – doubling of the Canada Pension Plan; – creation of an affordable national childcare program; – the revival of the Canada Health Accord; – comprehensive immigration strategy with a pathway to citizenship; and – establishment of a Green Jobs agenda for Canada. It says indigenous kids are over-represented in child welfare systems across Canada, and calls for more social and economic supports to improve life for the most at-risk children.
“We think the low price of oil these days gives us the opportunity to properly plan and develop those resources”, McLeod said. Nova Scotia has been among the provinces pushing for the changes, which it says will recognize apprentices’ training and necessary hours to complete their apprenticeships no matter where they are in Canada. “We look forward to working with the provinces and territories as we advance in our co-operation”. As such, it’s nearly certain to disappoint partisans on both sides of the debate, and those looking to the Canadian Energy Strategy as a silver bullet – either for getting pipelines built or preventing that from happening – aren’t going to like what’s actually in it.
On the one hand the strategy says it should maintain the highest degree of environmental safeguards and protection, including by addressing climate change and reducing greenhouse gas emissions globally.
Some, like Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall, have suggested that any attempts by other provinces to reject key energy infrastructure projects should be rejected out of hand. On the other, it talks about fostering the development of pan-Canadian, regional and bi-lateral agreements on energy development transportation and transmission.
The document makes few specific mentions of pipelines and oil and gas.
Added the premier: “It employs people”.
The strategy was announced as Nexen Energy apologized for a five-million litre pipeline spill of bitumen, produced water and sand southeast of Fort McMurray, Alta.
Robert Skinner, an executive fellow at the School of Public Policy at the University of Calgary who worked on and studied energy strategies for decades, said it’s not surprising it falls short.
Premiers Philippe Couillard and Kathleen Wynne’s neighbourly friendship was on display this week in St. John’s, where the two campaigned for a broad climate change plan as part of the Canadian Energy Strategy. A Canadian Energy Strategy, no matter how much it might favor Alberta’s interests, can not overcome that obstacle.
“We need to see real reductions in carbon pollution across the country”.