Elections do, in fact, have substantial material consequences:
Canada’s TC Energy Corp. and the Albertan provincial government said Wednesday they would scuttle the Keystone XL oil pipeline project, bringing to an end a yearslong controversy over an effort to pipe more Canadian crude to the U.S.
The decision had been expected after President Biden used his first day in office to revoke a key permit for the pipeline to cross the country’s northern border, shutting down construction.
It marks a historic victory for environmentalists who for a decade have made Keystone XL the focus of a campaign to block new pipeline construction as a way to limit oil consumption that contributes to global warming.
TC Energy gave little explanation for its final decision in a Wednesday news release. It alluded to Mr. Biden’s decision and said it had completed a comprehensive review of its options before making the final decision to terminate the project. It said that going forward it would build its businesses in shipping and storing natural gas, liquid fuels and power to meet growing North American demand for cleaner fuels.
“We remain disappointed and frustrated with the circumstances surrounding the Keystone XL project, including the cancellation of the presidential permit for the pipeline’s border crossing,” said Jason Kenney, premier of Alberta. The province had invested $1.1 billion in the project [heckuva job! –ed.] and will now have to swallow the cost. The government said it would continue to explore its options to recoup its money.
One important thing is that the company walking away makes the policy change effectively immune from reversal by activist courts.
…one part worth emphasizing here is that Kenney put in all his chips in March 2020:
Alberta’s official opposition leader Rachel Notley is calling for an independent review of the Jason Kenney government’s failed Keystone XL deal.
The Alberta NDP leader declared her intentions during a news conference on Thursday afternoon.
“Jason Kenney’s incompetence has cost Alberta taxpayers $1.3 billion, at least,” said Notley. “He made an incredibly reckless gamble with Albertans money and he lost it.”
Wednesday’s announcement of the dead deal was the final nail in the coffin for a project Notley said had a high likelihood of failure before the deal was even made.
“Joe Biden’s position on KXL was well known by everyone,” she said, “and it was always a strong possibility that he would win the election.”
In March of last year, Alberta committed $7.5 billion to Keystone XL, a $1.5 billion investment and $6 billion in backstop loans.
I assume his next move is to issue bonds to raise money for a long position on GameStop.