Sask. Premier Brad Wall promotes Energy East pipeline in Toronto
Wall delivers speech in Toronto
Premier Brad Wall delivered a speech in Toronto today in support of Energy East to an audience of business, labour, education and government leaders.
Energy East is a proposed $15.7 billion pipeline that will transport western Canadian oil to refineries in eastern Canada and a marine terminal in New Brunswick.
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Despite the price of oil being below $50 a barrel, Wall explained there is a need and demand for pipelines and that Energy East would reduce Canada's dependency on foreign oil.
The premier admitted that pipelines are not perfect, but that they are a safer option than rail cars.
"When you move oil by rail, you're four-and-a-half times more likely to have a spill," said Wall at the Empire Club of Canada.
He also touched on the issue of climate change, arguing Energy East would not harm the environment.
"If we shut down the energy sector in Canada, you eliminate 192 megatonnes of emissions. Meanwhile, coal plants in China emit 4000 for coal," said Wall.
NDP concerns on speaking engagements
Saskatchewan NDP leader Trent Wotherspoon was skeptical last week of the premier's trip to eastern Canada.
He hoped Wall's speaking engagements would not inflame the situation.
"As opposed to engaging those that have concerns in a serious way, in a respectful way, in a strong way that represents Saskatchewan," Wotherspoon said.
Wall said the pipeline is expected to generate $55 billion in economic benefits in Canada, including $4.3 billion in Saskatchewan and $9.3 billion in Quebec.
It will create more than 14,000 construction jobs and more than 3,300 permanent jobs when operating, he said.
With files from Waqas Chughtai