Prime Minister Trudeau is under some fire for his handling, or maybe that should be mishandling, of the Covid-19 vaccine purchase and rollout and also for not badgering U.S. President Joe Biden over his killing of the Keystone XL pipeline.
I can see Trudeau facing criticism for his handling of the vaccine rollout because he has said every Canadian, in a country of 36 million, will not be able to be vaccinated until September.
The United States, a country of 360 million, has almost 30 million vaccinated as of this writing, and that was with the incompetent administration of former U.S. President Donald Trump there at the beginning.
Looking at the U.S. numbers it would seem to stand to reason that if the job were done properly here that Canadians should be able be able to get their last shot in the arm by April at the latest.
Trudeau does need to pull up his socks on this one.
However, when it comes to the cancelling of the Keystone pipeline, I don’t think it is fair to hang any of it on Trudeau.
It was preordained.
President Barack Obama had kiboshed the pipeline when he was president.
President Trump overturned Obama’s decision but it never really got any legs as it got caught up in delays because of challenges in court.
Biden, vice-president in the Obama administration, made it clear when he began his campaign for president that he would kill the pipeline again and he followed through.
What could Trudeau, or anyone, have been able to do about that? The answer, of course, is nothing.
Biden had made it abundantly clear it was not an item for discussion or negotiation.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, whose province had already sunk $1.5 billion into the pipeline venture, found that out.
Environmentalists and Native American groups in the U.S. have fought the project for more than a decade.
As well, First Nations groups in Northern Alberta have even gone so far as to sue the provincial and federal government for damages from 15 years of oil sands development they were not consulted on, including treaty-guaranteed rights to hunt, trap and fish on traditional lands.
Canada already sends 550,000 barrels of oil per day to the U.S. via the existing Keystone pipeline.
Environmentalists on both sides of the border will be happy with the cancellation but with renewable energy being unable to fulfil our needs for some time to come and with the jobs construction of the pipeline would provide, I would have been happy if it had come to fruition.
Keystone XL is not the only pipeline moving oil from Canada that is in trouble in the U.S. Governor Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan notified the Calgary-based Enbridge in 2020 that she was revoking an easement granted in 1953 that allowed for roughly 6.4 kilometres of a pipeline carrying light oil from Western Canada to run under the Straits of Mackinac, the effect of which would be to shut down the pipeline in May.
Enbridge had reached an agreement with then-Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican, in 2018 to replace the underwater segment with a new pipe that would be housed in a tunnel to be drilled through bedrock beneath the Straits.
Apparently worry about an oil spill prompted Whitmer to renege on the 1953 agreement. Enbridge says it has never had one there but another Enbridge pipe did spill at least 3.2 million litres of oil in the Kalamazoo River in southern Michigan in 2010.
“Enbridge has routinely refused to take action to protect our Great Lakes and the millions of Americans who depend on them for clean drinking water and good jobs,” Whitmer, a Democrat, said in a statement in regard to Line 5.
But with the pipeline to be housed in a tunnel that Enbridge says could be completed by 2024, I would hope an agreement could be reached to keep the oil flowing until that comes about.
For the moment, Enbridge says the pipeline is monitored 24/7.
The 1,038 segment of the pipeline that runs through Michigan starts at Rapid River, runs along the northern shore of Lake Michigan until it reaches the Straits of Mackinac. There the pipeline divides into two separate 51-centimetre lines, which reunite when they reach McGulpin Point on the southern side of the Straits. From there it runs through the lower part of the state to feed three refineries in Sarnia, one in Detroit and two in Toledo, Ohio.
Our prime minister should definitely be throwing his weight behind Enbridge in this one.
However, no matter how it ends up, if Whitmer does eventually get her way and the pipeline is shut down, Trudeau cannot be blamed.
As with the Keystone pipeline, the Enbridge line is going across U.S. land, which means we really don’t have a say.
WHEN I PRINTED an update last week on the problems my wife and I had had with online shopping, with the watch she ordered never showing and the same happening with the smokeless grill I had ordered, there was a pleasant experience out of it all that I neglected to mention.
After my original writing about not receiving the grill, I received a call from Marilyn Maki with a generous offer. She had a smokeless grill that she didn’t use because she preferred the Ninja air fryer she had.
The smokeless grill was mine if I wanted it.
After some discussion I said yes and she went so far as to deliver it right to my door.
But she had told my wife Barbara, who had answered the phone, about how much she liked the Ninja air fryer and she told me the same. She did such a selling job on it that my wife and
I decided we would probably go that route too.
And in regard to the smokeless grill?
Well, we will pay her kind offer forward, knowing exactly where it will go, to a young family we know will put it to good use.