Bill C-69 has passed. It will shortly become the law of the land. Same with Bill C-48, the tanker ban. Both bills passed merely days after TransMountain pipeline got the green light.
There are truths and consequences of all of these that need to be highlighted.
The truth is that Bill C-69 was one of the most poorly drafted pieces of legislation ever to be put before the Senate in decades. The truth is that a record number of Senate amendments – nearly 200 of them – to this Bill show how sloppy the original version was that sailed through the House on the back of a government majority.
The truth is that this Bill received widespread criticism from industry Suits, resource sector Boots, political and think tank analysts from a broad spectrum across the board and from regular, every day people from coast-to-coast. We know because many of them support our organization. We took their voices to the Senate Bill C69 hearings.
The truth is that the version of Bill C-69 that finally passed through with 99 amendments at the end still omitted key changes that would have made this a step forward for the Canadian economy.
The truth is that Bill C-69, together with the tanker ban Bill C-48, also passed this week, make resource sector investing in Canada more difficult.
The truth is that not one “Suit” , not one capital markets expert, not one research analyst, not one fund manager, not one investment banker nor one CEO from the energy sector has stepped forward to say this Bill helps attract capital into our resource sector. Not one of this same group has said that the TransMountain decision will encourage other proponents to step up and begin the process of investing in our resource sector.
The truth is that the Mining Association of Canada is split down the middle on C69, with the uranium and energy members solidly in opposition to the public entreaties of support that MAC’s head is offering up to media.
There are three immediate and widespread consequences of all of this:
- Opposition to TransMountain will ramp up over the summer. It’s already started – one activist is urging her followers to “Warrior up” and get ready to do battle.
- Premier John Horgan of BC has shut down resource exploration in north-eastern BC yesterday, using concerns over caribou as a ploy to support his decision. He opposes TransMountain.
- Western alienation continues to simmer and heat up across the Prairies. Those people in Eastern Canada who pooh-pooh this phenomenon should not take it lightly.
Suits and Boots launched the fight to #KillBillC69 last September. We ran a strong, consistent and powerful campaign that launched a wave of protest that swept across the country. Our work resulted in perhaps C-69 being watered down somewhat, but we came up short, like everyone did, to stop the worst elements of this Bill from becoming law.
Where do we go from here? We’re gearing up to provide a voice of reason and support for the resource sector this summer. We were invited by Premier Kenney to participate in a meeting about the “War Room” in Alberta three weeks ago. That meeting outlined broad ideas of what this group hopes to bring to the table, nothing more. There’s been nothing concrete since, and we haven’t heard anything more about details or what could be asked of us at Suits and Boots.
We’ll keep you posted. If we take a role in the war room, or decide to pass, we’ll let you know.
Until then, we’re gearing up for a busy summer. We hope you will, too.
Thank you for your support. Rick Peterson,
Founder, Suits and Boots