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Conservative leadership candidate promises to help oil industry

MP Pierre Poilievre received ovations for his speech to the Sask Oil and Gas Show on Wednesday
WEYBURN – The oil and gas industry is suffering under the “relentless ideological drive” of the Liberal government that is openly hostile to the energy sector, and a Conservative government under Pierre Poilievre would restore a balance between the economy and the environment.

The candidate to lead the federal Conservatives was given enthusiastic applause, and a standing ovation, by the large crowd on hand for the awards luncheon at the Saskatchewan Oil and Gas Show, after being introduced by former Conservative leader, MP Andrew Scheer.

Poilievre also set up a meet-and-greet at the Panther drilling rig exhibit on the fair grounds to meet people, and his campaign staff were on hand to sell party memberships for anyone who wanted to vote in the leadership race.

He noted the lack of pipelines and the ability of the oil industry in Saskatchewan to send their oil out for export has resulted in a situation where dictators can supply oil to other countries, like Russian president Vladimir Putin supplying oil to many European countries.

“This has given an increased market share for dictators who have used the money to carry out warfare on their own citizens and against their neighbours,” said Poilievre, who pointed out the situation would’ve been totally different if the Energy East pipeline had been allowed to go ahead.“Imagine if today we had the Energy East pipeline to deliver one million barrels of oil to Eastern Canadian ports that we could ship over to Europe, and break the dependence on Putin, and the dollars would be going back to our people rather to his weapons,” said Poilievre to enthusiastic applause. “What about working class people who have been sacrificed to this ideological agenda?”Noting the high rate of inflation and high fuel prices all hurting working people, Poilievre suggested that the Liberals’ anti-energy policies are one of the causes.

“Let’s not underestimate the impact the cost of living has on working people, the attack on the energy sector has had over the last several years,” he said, giving some historical context to his points.

He noted that in 2014, when the price of oil was over $100 a barrel, the Canadian dollar kept pace, so when the price of oil went, the dollar’s value also went up.

“Energy is now a smaller part of the economy, and now we have a 78-cent dollar. If things had stayed the way they should have, the gas price at the pumps would be 25 per cent cheaper,” he said, and this affects all working people, whether they are in the energy sector or not.

“Meanwhile, we import 130,000 barrels of overseas oil every single day from dictatorships like Saudi Arabia and Nigeria,” he said. “A Poilievre government will repeal the anti-pipeline Bill C-69. We’ll support pipelines and other transportation infrastructure, including a national energy corridor. I believe every Canadian province can be convinced that it’s better to use our own energy rather than importing foreign energy, and provide jobs for energy across the country. We will support the Northern Gateway project, exporting energy through the port of Churchill.”

He added he would also approach the White House and with unions south of the border who would welcome the jobs to complete the Keystone pipeline project, “so they no longer have to draw on their strategic reserves or buy energy from Venezuela.”

Poilievre also said he would ensure that the 130,000 barrels a day of imported oil would be replaced by domestically-produced oil within a five-year period, and went on to comment on the environmental side of the issue.“The point of climate change is not to attack the most responsible energy sector in the world, but it’s to use this sector as a force of good,” he said, noting an example in Whitecap Resources’ carbon capture and storage project in the Weyburn Oil Field, the largest one in the world.

He noted they are past net zero, but are carbon negative, as they put more carbon into the ground than is emitted into the air. “We should be exporting this technology around the world,” he said.

“Why am I running for prime minister? I am running for prime minister to put you back in charge of your life, by making Canada the freest nation on earth. That is my purpose,” added Poilievre.
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