Northern Gateway, Jeffrey Simpson writes this morning, is dead:
Yes, regulatory hearings before the National Energy Board will continue until the NEB approves the project. And yes, Enbridge will keep pushing for it. And yes, the Harper government, which is so publicly committed to the project, will continue to extol its virtues as part of the need to get Canadian resources to Asia.But it will never happen:
To survive, the Gateway pipeline would have to push past the growing opposition of British Columbians in general, the opposition of the current Liberal provincial government and the NDP government likely to replace it next year, the unanimous opposition of environmentalists, considerable opposition from at least some of the aboriginal groups along the route and, if all this were not enough, the likelihood of prolonged court battles.
Despite Stephen Harper's ham handed attempt to remove all the obstacles, the people will have none of it. Perhaps the oil will flow down the Fraser Valley to Vancouver, where there will be opposition to loading it onto tankers at the port of Vancouver. Perhaps it will flow east to Sarnia. In both cases the pipelines have been built. But you can bet that, after the tainted meat scandal, Canadians will insist that those pipelines be maintained and not self regulated.
It's a reminder that the people of Canada can put an end to Stephen Harper's dreams. Now what about that dream of remaking Canada?