The Federal Liberal Cabinet has given the National Energy Board 22 weeks to complete a new environmental review of the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion.

Highwood MLA Wayne Anderson is unsurprisingly not impressed.

"What an absolute joke! This Federal Government is taking us and playing us like a bad hand in Vegas. Let's be realistic here, Premier Notley said the announcement would be within weeks, Yeah? Well the announcement came out that these guys aren't going to to do anything until after the next Federal Election in 2019."

Anderson says he was surprised the Trudeau Liberals would go this route and not appeal last month's Federal Court of Appeal ruling, killing the pipeline, to the Supreme Court.

The new review will hold more in-depth consultations with indigenous communities, and will be forced to review the impact of additional oil tanker traffic on the B.C. Coast.

The Federal Conservatives are sceptical that even this new review will be able to stand up to court challenges.

UCP Deputy Leader, Leela Aheer, in a statement questioned whether or not the project will ever be completed.

"With a 22 week National Energy Board review and later federal Cabinet deliberations, it seems no decision will be made until end of May 2019 at the very earliest. In fact, one is left wondering if Prime Minister Trudeau is planning to delay his decision until after the fall 2019 federal election."

Alberta Liberal Party Leader David Khan also released a statement taking a more wait and see attitude.

"Alberta Liberals are pleased there is now some progress to move the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion project forward. But we are also putting the Federal Government and the Alberta Government on notice. You had better get it right this time."

"Albertan's and Canadians need the jobs. We need the higher revenue from selling our energy to world markets to pay for healthcare and schools in our Province and in our Country. The Trans Mountain Pipeline project is essential for a growing Alberta economy and for Canada." Khan said.

 

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