CALGARY (660 NEWS) – The Alberta government announced the finalized agreement with TC Energy to invest in the completion of the Keystone XL pipeline.
On Tuesday, Premier Jason Kenney said Alberta will invest $1.5 billion this year, along with a $6-billion loan guarantee next year.
“Today we’re taking action that looks beyond (COVID-19) to a better future for Canada’s energy industry and everyone who depends on it.”
As the COVID-19 precautions take a heavy toll on Alberta’s economy, Kenney said this is the time to start preparing for economic recovery.
“I know that all of these things, when you put them all together, can seem overwhelming to people but please remember that we Albertans are a resilient people,” said Kenney.
“We have overcome trying times in our past to go build one of the freest, most prosperous, and generous societies on the face of the Earth.”
Following the pandemic, Kenney said the government plans to launch a bold economic recovery package meant to both diversify the economy and ensure a future for the energy sector.
However, Kenney said the plan will only be possible if Alberta energy has access to world markets.
“In other words, it will only happen if we get pipelines built.”
Construction will begin on the pipeline immediately as Kenney said it cannot wait until the pandemic passes.
“There are steps that must be taken now to plan for and to build our future.”
The construction begins with the goal of increasing delivery to American markets by 830,000 barrels a day.
Kenney said the project is to be completed by the summer of 2023 and that there are shipping commitments in place from then until 2037.
“It is a solid bet that will produce a healthy return for Albertans and it will rescue the future of our energy industry and power our country out of the COVID-19 crash.”
Kenney said the construction this year alone will provide 1,400 high-paying jobs to Albertans, along with 1,500 elsewhere for a total of nearly 3,000 jobs for Canadians.
“These are real jobs. Good paying jobs. Right now, when they are so desperately needed, (these jobs) will provide financial security for thousands of Alberta families who would otherwise be unemployed and probably dependent on government support at this time.”