Premier Notley disappointed with Ottawa’s response to Alberta oil bottleneck


Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says she’s disappointed with Ottawa’s lukewarm response to the province’s plan to ease oil bottlenecks by buying more rail cars.

She says it’s simplistic to dismiss buying rail cars by saying they probably wouldn’t arrive until a pipeline expansion were already under construction.

Alberta oil is currently selling at a discount of about $45 a barrel because of an oil glut due to a lack of pipeline capacity.

Notley has proposed Ottawa invest in moving oil to market on rail cars in the meantime and as a hedge against future shipping problems.

Notley says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who spent the day in Calgary on Thursday, left Alberta with a better idea of how crucial the issue is than when he arrived.

READ MORE: ‘This is very much a crisis’: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says of low Alberta oil price

Watch below: (From Nov. 22, 2018) Prime Minister Justin Trudeau agreed that plummeting Alberta oil prices are a “crisis” for Alberta, and said Ottawa is working on getting a pipeline built “in the right way.”

She’s also thanking people who she says helped her make her point when they shut down part of a downtown Calgary street for a rally during Trudeau’s visit.

Alberta could go ahead with the rail car purchase with or without the federal government, she said Friday after an announcement in Edmonton.

“The government of Alberta will do what it needs to do, whether we do it by ourselves or with support from Ottawa,” she said.

“It might be reasonable for them to come to the table.”

Notley is planning a trip to Ottawa and Toronto next week for meetings and speeches to try to keep the oil bottleneck on the federal government’s front-burner.

She has said the price gap between Canadian and U.S. crude is costing the country’s economy $80 million a day.

READ MORE: Canadian oil price discounts costing economy billions of dollars

Watch below: Some recent videos from Global News’ coverage of the Alberta oil industry.

Trudeau said in Calgary that the federal government is doing what it can to get the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion built, which would triple the line’s capacity to carry oil to tankers on the west coast.

The federal government bought Trans Mountain and its expansion project for $4.5 billion last summer only to have the Federal Court of Appeal strike down its approval. The court cited inadequate Indigenous consultation and failure to consider impacts on the marine environment.

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