Ezra Levant live from the Northern Gateway hearings
Canada's government has a responsibility to make sure people can take advantage of the economic benefits Alberta's massive oil deposits can generate, the country's energy minister said on Monday as he once again decried "radicals" bent on stopping Enbridge Inc's Northern Gateway oil pipeline. As about 50 protesters demonstrated noisily outside, Joe Oliver, minister of natural resources, said in Vancouver that "environmental and other radical groups" are indiscriminately opposing any and all large industrial projects and are using Canada's regulatory system as their main battleground. "They seek to exploit any loophole they can find, stacking public hearings with bodies to ensure that delays kill good projects," Oliver said. Such delays will send investment capital fleeing and sully Canada's reputation, he warned. Public hearings into the $5.5-billion Northern Gateway pipeline to the West Coast from Alberta's oil sands began this month. More than 4000 people have registered to comment at the proceedings, which resume in Edmonton Tuesday. Oliver and other government officials have said many of the green groups opposed to Northern Gateway are funded by foreign interests that want nothing else but to disrupt Canadian trade. He said he plans to find ways to streamline the "unpredictable and needlessly complex" regulatory regime to cut down on the time it takes for approvals. He made his remarks as a University of Alberta study urged the oil-rich provincial government to forge <b>...</b>
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