Trans Mountain would not be profitable


in Canada, Economics, Politics, The environment

One of the most bizarre things the Trudeau government has ever said about energy and climate change is that building the Trans Mountain pipeline is necessary for the transition away from fossil fuels because it will raise the money needed to carry it out.

This has always been an absurd proposition. It’s ridiculous on its face that investing billions of tens of billions in fossil fuel export infrastructure which will operate for decades will help Canada do its share to avoid catastrophic climate change.

Now even the financial argument has come under serious criticism. Parliamentary Budget Officer Yves Giroux recently estimated that the cost of the project has grown from $12.6 billion in 2020 to $21.4 billion now and concluded that “Trans Mountain no longer continues to be a profitable undertaking.” At the same time, cancelling the project would yield a $14 billion loss.

Neither the federal nor Alberta government is changing course because of this analysis. Chrystia Freeland’s press secretary has said: “The Trans Mountain Expansion Project is in the national interest and will make Canada and the Canadian economy more sovereign and more resilient.” Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage said: “This project is necessary for Alberta and Canada’s energy sectors.”

All this is a reminder of how the behaviour a government needs to follow to stay in power does not consist of serving the public interest or putting forward a coherent policy agenda, but rather maintaining the support of the key societal actors that the government needs to keep in power.


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

. June 24, 2022 at 2:27 pm

PBO says Trans Mountain pipeline to result in net loss for government | CTV News

. June 24, 2022 at 2:27 pm

Budget watchdog says Trans Mountain expansion is no longer profitable | CBC News

. June 24, 2022 at 3:43 pm

Canada’s case for Trans Mountain assumes the pipeline will operate for 100 years. PBO disagrees

Secret reports the federal government is relying on to argue the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is commercially viable are based on the unrealistic assumption the pipeline will operate for 100 years, Canada’s financial watchdog told Canada’s National Observer.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: