Western premiers want to talk energy with Ottawa
The premiers of Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia have agreed to join forces and approach Ottawa on greenhouse gas regulations and the so-called Canadian Energy Strategy.
Alberta Premier Alison Redford, Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall, and B.C. Premier Christy Clark announced the initiative after meeting in Edmonton on Tuesday. They say they want to discuss the role the West plays in Canadian energy production.
"As energy producers, as a big and growing part of the national economy, this is our chance to really make sure that western voices and western views are reflected in the decisions that are taken in Ottawa and across the country," Clark said. "Energy has to be part of that discussion because that's what we do here."
"We are net contributors to the country, and want to be contributors to the country," Wall said.
"We can also identify some of the barriers you've heard to growth, to continued success, in the West. We can do that individually ... and maybe have some success. But I like our chances if we're talking about them together, if we're going to Ottawa together."
Redford says the three premiers, whose governments pursue common economic goals under the New West Partnership, will approach Ottawa before Albertans go the polls next spring.
Redford, Wall and Clark also talked about next month's Council of the Federation meeting in Victoria where they plan to discuss health-care funding and new ways to improve the system with premiers from across the country.