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Lakeland MP outlines plans for next term as shadow minister

Lakeland MP Shannon Stubbs has some big plans for her second term as shadow minister for natural resources. File Photo

Lakeland MP Shannon Stubbs has big plans for her next term as shadow minister of natural resources.

Stubbs was reappointed to the position earlier this month, and said she’s eager to continue the work she’s already started.

From pushing for the construction and completion of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, to advocating for the energy sector, the local MP is ready for what the next four years has in store.

“I will continue to focus on (amendments to Bill C-69) and continue to advocate for the repeal of Bill C-48. I will continue to call for a concrete plan for the continuation of the Trans Mountain expansion, but also, to cut red tape, to cut taxes, to streamline unnecessary red tape, to reduce duplication of redundancy and complexity in Canada that the Liberals have imposed so that the conditions are certain, predictable, and fair for the private sector to invest in the energy sector, and to build pipelines to all export markets in all directions,” Stubbs told the Nouvelle.

She added, “I’m very grateful to be entrusted with this role again. I’m so thankful for the ability to advocate on these issues, which are so personally and directly important to the people that I represent in the Lakeland, and Albertans right across the province. But also, to be able to make the argument constantly, as I do, that the resource and energy sectors underpin the entire Canadian economy and the consequences of the catastrophic job losses and loss of investment in the energy sector under the past term of the Liberals are not just confined to Alberta or to Saskatchewan. It’s really, in my opinion, the most pressing economic problem facing the entire country, and the flip side of that, is that it’s also one of the faultiness of the national unity divisions that are happening right now.”

Over the course of her last term in office, Stubbs "led the fight for the official opposition on a number of issues that are key to the Canadian economy,” such as the Trans Mountain expansion.

Through her role as shadow minister of natural resources, Stubbs was able to secure two special emergency committee meetings and three emergency debates on the project.

Stubbs noted she outlined options for the completion of the Trans Mountain expansion before Kinder Morgan had abandoned the project, which was purchased by the federal government for over $4.5-billion.

“Our (the Conservative Party of Canada's) position always was that not a single tax dollar ever should have been spent on the pipeline, but that the Liberal government should have provided legal and political certainty for the private sector investor company to be able to go ahead and build the pipeline,” Stubbs exclaimed.

She continued, “Of course, to this day, I continue to call for a concrete plan for the next steps of exactly how and when the Trans Mountain expansion will be in service, how much will be the overall cost to tax payers, what will the final ownership structure of the pipeline look like, and most importantly, what will the Liberals do differently this time around and different from the last time, in order to provide that legal certainty for construction of the pipeline.”

According to Stubbs, she was also highly involved in advocating against Bill C-69 and Bill C-48.

“While it was a transport bill, I was asked to work with our transport critic to be the lead spokesperson on C-48, because it’s very clear that Bill C-48 isn’t about protecting marine ecology or the coastline, it really is very clearly to ban oil pipelines and oil exports,” explained Stubbs, adding she also “led the charge against C-69.”

What she found disappointing was that her arguments against Bill C-69 went unheard, which included “its impact on freezing future energy investment and ensuring another pipeline will never be build in Canada again, but also cautioning that the bill, because of the uncertainty... that it had major areas of intervention and provincial jurisdiction, that it would impact municipal infrastructure, so that the scope of the negative impact of Bill C-69 not only closes the door on responsible resource development in Canada, but also a wide array of other consequences too."

Stubbs was pleased when, within a few months, the Senate proposed 200 amendments to the bill, though most “were ultimately rejected” by the Liberal government.

“Those amendments were supported by a coalition of premiers, economists, industry experts, private sector proponents, indigenous leaders and business owners, and municipalities right across the country,” Stubbs stressed. “Here we are today, every single premier of every single province and territory in the country wants major changes to Bill C-69 right now, and I continue to call for them.”

With her previous term in mind, Stubbs said moving forward she will be fighting for the oil and gas industry, not only for her constituents, but all Canadians.

Meagan MacEachern, Bonnyville Nouvelle