The Alberta Court of Appeal has ruled that Bill C-69, the environmental ‘Impact Assessment Act,’ also known as the ‘No more Pipelines’ Act, is unconstitutional.
“The federal jurisdictional overreach is manifest. Despite the blending of federal points of interest with the parts of the IAA challenged here, the IAA constitutes a profound invasion into provincial legislative jurisdiction and provincial proprietary rights. Parliament’s claimed power to regulate all environmental and other effects of intraprovincial designated projects improperly intrudes into industrial activity, resource development, local works and undertakings and other matters within provincial jurisdiction,” reads the Alberta Court of Appeals decision.
“… The unavoidable effect of the IAA would be the centralization of the governance of Canada to the point this country would no longer be recognized as a real federation.”
The Alberta Court of Appeals also notes ludicrous provisions such as giving the federal government the authority to veto oil and gas projects if they in any way impact the flight of migratory birds.
“…. This is not what the framers of our Constitution intended. And it is certainly not what provincial governments agreed to either on patriation of the Constitution,” the decision continues.
“Where natural resources are involved, it is each province that is concerned with the sustainable development of its natural resources, not the federal government. It is the province that owns those natural resources, not the federal government.”
Four of five justices added that Bill C-69 was a “breathtaking pre-emption of provincial authority” and that it stripped Albertans of their “birthright.”
“The federal government does not have the constitutional right to veto an intra-provincial designated project based on its view of the public interest. Nor does the federal government have the constitutional right to appropriate the birthright and economic future of the citizens of a province,” the judges concluded.
While Liberals have claimed that Bill C-69, passed by royal assent in 2019, merely creates a rigorous process by which environmental standards are upheld, it has provided the federal government with unprecedented powers to dictate and ultimately crush Alberta’s infrastructure projects in the oil and gas industry.
Following Bill C-69’s passing, Premier Jason Kenney and the United Conservative Party launched an appeal in the Alberta court. That challenge has paid off.
The federal Liberals are already mobilizing, promising to appeal the decision so that they can regain control over the province.