Derek H. Burney
spoke to the Canada Labour and Employee Relations Network in
Toronto on the importance of developing the Keystone XL
'When I spoke to your group a few years ago, my topic
was "Barnacles on the Border." Today, I was asked to
speak about something much bigger than a barnacle and even more
critical to the tone and the substance of the Canada – U.S.
But, in February, when John West initially suggested the
Keystone pipeline as a topic, I declined saying "it may be all
over by then." Silly me. Like the unfinished symphony, the
saga of Keystone goes on and on with no clear verdict in
I caution you at the outset that I am a Director of the
company which would like to build the pipeline (TransCanada). I
have never thought that actually knowing something about a given
question should be a constraint against volunteering an opinion. My
views are, nonetheless, personal and not those of the company, nor
my law firm for that matter.
First, some context: Canada has the third largest supply of
crude oil in the world – 174 billion barrels – and the
lion's share is in the Canadian oil sands.
Only 20% of the world's oil reserves are open to the
private sector for development. More than half of that amount is
located in Canada.
For those who subscribe to the fundamentals of a market
economy, that makes Canada the premiere location for investment in
crude oil development. But, and it is an important but, only if we
are able to build the necessary infrastructure to ship oil to
continental and global markets. The logistics urgently need to
catch up to the supply. Which brings me to the importance of
The Keystone project was conceived, designed and built to
transport Canadian and some U.S. crude oil (from North Dakota and
Montana) to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast. Keystone XL –
the northern leg from Hardisty, Alberta to Cushing, Oklahoma
– is actually the fourth phase of the pipeline; the first
three phases of which are already built and in
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Canada is a constitutional monarchy, a parliamentary democracy and a federation comprised of ten provinces and three territories. Canada's judiciary is independent of the legislative and executive branches of Government.
In Bank of Montreal v Bumper Development Corporation Ltd, 2016 ABQB 363, the Alberta Court of Queen's Bench enforced the "immediate replacement" provision in the Canadian Association of Petroleum Landmen 2007 Operating Procedure...
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