Timeline: Alaska’s natural gas pipe dreams

Alaska Dispatch

Timeline: Alaska’s natural gas pipe dreams

Denali — The Alaska Gas Pipeline project is dead, which is déjà vu for many in Alaska. Talk of the gas line has been going on since workers struck oil at Prudhoe Bay in 1968. In 1977, President Jimmy Carter went so far as to sign legislation designating the Alaska Highway as the route the line would take. That’s pretty much been the trajectory of the project ever since….

In 2008, former Gov. Sarah Palin awarded the company the license to build the line, along with $500 million in state money to help it along the way. It was her signature piece of legislation. TransCanada says that its project is still moving forward.

But to know to know where Alaska’s going with this, it’s important to know where it’s been. 

374-denali-gas-pipeline-thumb-175x113-373.jpgAlaska Dispatch covers the plans, politics and problems of the Denali natural gas pipeline from 2003 until the cancellation of the project.

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Time to settle First Nations land claims: Financial Post

Diane Francis, columnist, Financial Post

Time to settle First Nations land claims

The time has come for Canada and the provinces to make timely and responsible resource development the country’s number one national interest. This represents a policy priority that has never existed but is absolutely essential today to protect Canadian living standards and rights.

To date, Canada has behaved like a patchwork quilt of special interests and various levels of government whose leaders have bobbed and weaved but never devised a just or swift means of settling, or rejecting, land claims by First Nations…..

This week, the opening shot of what could be a monumental battle was fired when First Nations representatives from British Columbia came to warn Big Oil in Calgary that they would obstruct any linkage to Asia via pipelines, and presumably, rail lines, through their territory. If joined by others, and this is a given, their obstructionism for gain, or ideology, will financially damage landlocked Alberta, the prairies, the North and therefore the living standards of all Canadians.

Frankly, I don’t blame First Nations for obstructing development because they face a politicized and dysfunctional court system that never settles, never seems to reject new claims, never deals with any expeditiously and never imposes a deadline on requests.

Editor’s note: Read the quote from Financial Post business columnist Diane Francis carefully. In the key paragraph quoted here, she mentions the economy of Alberta, the prairies and the North. Somehow she neglected to mention the economy of the British Columbia, and the impact of the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline, for good or ill on BC. A conservative columnist, Francis, seems to assume that First Nations are against the pipeline simply for gain or “ideology,” and that settling Land Claims will lead to the construction of the pipeline,

First Nations stand ground

Financial Post

First Nations stand ground

In case their unequivocal message hasn’t been received, British Columbia’s First Nations are in Calgary this week to make it clear to the board of directors of Enbridge Inc., Enbridge’s annual meeting of shareholders and members of the broader oil community that the proposed $5.5-billion Northern Gateway pipeline is not going forward. 

It will be a difficult message to accept. The pipeline between the oil sands in Alberta and Kitimat on the northern coast of B.C. is a big plank in the oil-and-gas industry’s strategy to develop a new market for its products in Asia, a major part of Enbridge’s growth strategy, a key piece of strategic infrastructure for all of Canada, and a major job creator for Western Canada.