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The Pipeline

By Patrick Van Roy On January 20th, 2021

(Bloomberg) — The Canadian province that invested $1.1 billion of taxpayers’ money in the controversial Keystone XL project is now considering the sale of pipe and materials to try to recoup some funds.

“If the project ends, there would be assets that could be sold, such as enormous quantities of pipe,” Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said in a press conference Monday. “That would offset construction costs.”

With Joe Biden set to be sworn in this week, the U.S. president-elect’s campaign promise to cancel the crude pipeline’s license is haunting the Canadian oil sands industry. The decision may come via executive action on his first day in office, CBC News reported on Sunday, citing people it didn’t identify.

Meanwhile, the government of Justin Trudeau vowed to defend the project.

45 Responses to “The Pipeline”

  1. If the US cancels the project, a major project that is well underway, that would be an unfriendly act to Canada and to Alberta, one of the more pro-US parts of Canada.

    It would be a big mistake.

  2. It is a Campaign Promise and one of the Executive orders he’s supposed to sign today.

    we shall see.

  3. Trudeau ia missing Trump already.

    Keystone XL is news from another age. We havent read a thing about it for four years because they were just getting on with it. Day One of the Bolsheviks being back in and Keystone is news again.

  4. It was troubled in any event due to the very low price of crude.

    But this planned back-stab would kill it.

  5. Keystone’s purpose is to shift oil extracted from Canadian tar sands. That is the filthiest fuel on the planet and should not be encouraged in any way. I hope Biden scraps it on his first day at the office.

    https://www.banktrack.org/assets/pictures/os8.JPG

  6. Even after Canadian private companies and governments had spent millions on the construction?

    That’s how you treat an ally?

  7. Even after Canadian private companies and governments had spent millions on the construction?

    They knew the political risks. They gambled and lost.

  8. That sounds like a very Trumpian way to make an enemy out of a friend.

    Esp after what went on for the past four years.

  9. Biden is committed to a green energy revolution. The credibility of that committment would be undermined if he allowed Keystone to go ahead. If it was oil from an ordinary oilfield that would be one thing. But it’s tar sands oil. Extracting it uses huge amounts of energy and despoils the landscape for decades.

  10. Even after Canadian private companies and governments had spent millions on the construction?

    That’s how you treat an ally?

    You voted for it. You voted to treat your Canadian friends badly.

  11. Pete

    Stop

    Your president Trump used anti terrorism regs against Canada in unnecessary trade disputes, and you never said boo when he did that and neither did any of the other Trump twinkies here.

    Try to be half serious half the time if you would.

  12. yes it is unnecessary for the US to have equity in trade…. We must lose money every deal to help the “Little People” of the world right Phantom?

  13. Standby Phantom, your president is about to use anti-terror laws against thousands of Americans.

    You made a big deal of voting for Biden. It’s not unfair to remind you of it.

  14. Canada was not an unfair trader.

    They are an huge importer of all US goods.

    You think that they’re unfair because Trump told you that.

    He attacked Canada to get to China, and you thought that was oh so clever.

    He mentioned one or two cherry picked products, and never spoke of the overall trade relationship which was exceptionally robust and good in all areas of agriculture and manufactures.

  15. “yes it is unnecessary for the US to have equity in trade…. We must lose money every deal to help the “Little People” of the world right Phantom?”

    What was inequality did the United States have in trade?

    “That’s how you treat an ally?”

    I think quietly, and in prviate, Trudeau will be delighted. In the same way it has become in the United States the issue is splitting heavily on political lines in Canada as well. The left largely oppose the pipeline and the right have made it a major issue – so much so that the United Conservative Party (the governning party in Alberta) have sunk a stupid amount of money into this. Trudeau wants to appeal to the same electorate as the left, while not losing moderates by appearing anti-economy.

    So this way he doesn’t have to build a hugely environmentally damaging pipeline while also not losing face. It is probably win-win for him.

  16. I re-state that on an overall basis, Canada and the EU were fair to the US before and are fair now.

    Trump said that NAFTA was horrible, so he negotiated another deal in its place that was pretty much the same as NAFTA. It had a different name and it gave Mexican auto workers a pay raise, not sure how that helps the US.

    China was the bad guy, and he attacked our friends to get at China. That may seem to be a good strategy to someone, but not to me.

    But Pat thinks that it’s genius, the smartest idea that anyone ever had.

  17. all our trade deals we’re purposefully set at a disadvantage to the US it is still that way and has been standard american policy since WWII.

    If you spent a little time learning your nations foreign policy history you might know that.

  18. “all our trade deals we’re purposefully set at a disadvantage to the US it is still that way and has been standard american policy since WWII.”

    Such as? Do you have an example?

  19. Besides the Marshal Plan it has been US Policy that the inequity in trade deals shall always be on the American side of deals and Treaties.

    It is part of The State Department founding mission to help bring the rest of the world to our standard of living.

    Well job done……. time to treat the rest of the world as adult partners.

  20. “Besides the Marshal Plan it has been US Policy that the inequity in trade deals shall always be on the American side of deals and Treaties.”

    The Marshall Plan had nothing to do with trade, but was effectively foreign aid. Do you have a link to that policy, or any of those trade deals, or is that something you just made up?

  21. It is part of The State Department founding mission to help bring the rest of the world to our standard of living.

    Yes Patrick, but in return the US got the “supreme privelege” of the Dollar as the world currency which it has used to run unimaginable trade and fiscal deficits. If the UK tried to run deficits like that, Sterling would be trashed on the foreign exchanges, but Uncle Sam gets away with it thanks to King Dollar. So the US is able to live beyond its means decade after decade.

  22. “Yes Patrick, but in return the US got the “supreme privelege” of the Dollar as the world currency which it has used to run unimaginable trade and fiscal deficits. If the UK tried to run deficits like that, Sterling would be trashed on the foreign exchanges, but Uncle Sam gets away with it thanks to King Dollar. So the US is able to live beyond its means decade after decade.”

    I’m not sure that is true. While the US now has considerably more debt (as a proportion of GDP) than the UK does that was not the case for most of the post war era. It was only in the 1980s, when Ronald Reagan exploded the deficit, that US debt grew bigger than UK debt.

  23. When you have the power and wealth to carry the world and your currency is the world standard while your people still live like kings you can run deficits.

    No other nation in history has done more to improve the conditions of life World Wide Peter.

    No it is time to end American charity in wealth and blood.

    All Trump did is start a process that will take decades.

  24. I’m not sure that is true. While the US now has considerably more debt (as a proportion of GDP) than the UK does that was not the case for most of the post war era. It was only in the 1980s, when Ronald Reagan exploded the deficit, that US debt grew bigger than UK debt.

    Yes, but that’s been 40 years of ever growing government debt (Clinton was the last president to balance the budget) and 40 years of ever growing trade deficits as well. The value of the dollar is artificially boosted because it’s the world’s currency for trade which has enabled successive US governments to print gazillions without causing hyper-inflation Argentina style.

  25. Trade deficits are irrelevant. Trade total is what matters. It truthfully doesn’t matter if it is going out or coming in. It is the level of trade that helps drive prosperity. The US trade deficit goes down in a recession. No other time.

    Government debt as a percentage of GDP, not so much a balanced budget, is what matters. Ultimately if your economy grows by 3% and your debt grows by 2% then you have improved your debt position even though you have borrowed more money.

    And yes I think the fact that the US is the global trade currency has helped the American position, though less from a QE position. Simply it gives the American economy a front and centre position in global trade – something the Trump regime have tried to stop (because they and their puppets don’t understand trade). As such they have retreated from markets, so much so that in certain parts of the world the somewhat dodgy Yuan has replaced the Dollar.

  26. Trade deficits are irrelevant.

    Not to your currency. Any other country which had run the trade deficits the US has run this century would have seen its currency depreciate significantly with major inflation resulting. But Dollar Privelege keeps the currency afloat and inflation at bay.

  27. Government debt as a percentage of GDP, not so much a balanced budget, is what matters. Ultimately if your economy grows by 3% and your debt grows by 2% then you have improved your debt position even though you have borrowed more money.

    US government debt has more than doubled since 2009. Average annual growth in those years has been about 2%. That looks like a problem.

  28. “Not to your currency. Any other country which had run the trade deficits the US has run this century would have seen its currency depreciate significantly with major inflation resulting. But Dollar Privelege keeps the currency afloat and inflation at bay.”

    Not necessarily. That is part of it but only a small part. Firstly currency is more likely to move trade than trade to move currency. Ultimately, in terms of international markets, currency is a commodity with a value and that value will grow or shrink depending on supply and demand (just like all other commodities). It is why QE has an impact because it increases supply. But the demand side of it is more important. Now on one level a trade deficit will do that. If you have a trade deficit you are sending more of your currency into the international market (thus increasing supply). But if your economy is growing because of the benefits of increased trade (in either direction) then your economy becomes a better place to invest in. To invest in it you need currency (thus increasing demand). So a trade deficit only has a negative impact on currency if investors do not see your economy as been a good place to invest in.

    Now the Dollar as a reserve currency for much of the world increases its demand (because you can spend it pretty much anywhere). But the big reason for US currency stability, despite QE, despite trade deficits, is because the US is still one of the most attractive places to invest in.

  29. “US government debt has more than doubled since 2009. Average annual growth in those years has been about 2%. That looks like a problem.”

    It is a problem, but it hasn’t really doubled (certainly not before COVID-19). US debt growth has been horrendous in recent times. It was about $10 trillion in 2008 and in 2018 it was over $21 trillion. That is where the doubled bit comes from. But GDP debt in 2008 was 68% and was 104% in 2018. A substantial, unsustainable increase, but not double (about 50% increase – which is insane in a decade). Now the bulk of that happened in the initial period following the recession. It was 68% in 2008 and 99% four years later (a combination of the collapse in GDP and the levels of debt needed to get the economy going again – and fund things while they did it).

    But the failure of the second Obama administration and the Trump regime to balance the books during an economic boom is downright attrocious.

  30. It is a problem, but it hasn’t really doubled (certainly not before COVID-19).

    No, in 2009 it was $6 trillion and in 2018 it was $14 trillion. I looked it up before I posted at 12.21 AM:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_debt_of_the_United_States#/media/File:US_National_Debt_public_intergovernmental.png

  31. Raw values are irrelevant truth be told. Only two figures matter when it comes to government debt. Debt as a proportion of GDP and debt interest payments as a proportion of taxation. Keep both figures low and you are flying, even if the total debt and total interest payments are increasing.

  32. this thread would be hilarious if it wasn’t so misinformed about Canada

    Oilsands oil is no longer the dirtiest oil on the planet they have sunk billions into environmental improvements since the old days when they literally dug it out of the ground with huge excavators and trucked it around in huge mining trucks

    Not building the pipeline may result in even greater environmental damage, the americans have to buy Alberta heavy oil to make their Texas refineries operate properly, so instead of using a relatively benign and safe method of transport like pipelines they will use mile long trains to haul the oil to Texas. Guess how many more train derailments there are then pipeline leaks?

    If they don’t buy Alberta heavy oil there next best supplier is the failed state of Venezuela, that is right Pete Moore the godless commies

    As for Trudeau not wanting the pipeline, again you are wrong, Canada has many of the same striations of amurica and the best thing to happen to him would be the completion of this pipeline and at least a partial restoration of oil prosperity to western Canada

    The pipeline is very much in amuricas best interest as it is in Canada’s

  33. Raw values are irrelevant truth be told. Only two figures matter when it comes to government debt. Debt as a proportion of GDP and debt interest payments as a proportion of taxation.

    Between 2009-2018 debt increased by 133% and the economy grew by about 25%. So that’s a problem right there.

    In 2009 US debt interest payments were $383 billion and in 2018 they were $523 billion which is an increase of $140 billion or 37%. If interest rates had stayed the same as in 2009 the increase would have been 133% in line with the increase in the debt. In 2009 US government tax receipts were $1,200 billion and in 2018 they were $2,000 billion. So debt interest was 32% of tax receipts in 2009 and fell to 26% in 2018. Since then the economy has tanked and debt has soared. Tax receipts for at least 2020 and 2021 will be significantly down and it is uncertain when they will get back to 2019 levels. So the US government has to hope that interest rates will stay ultra-low for probably at least the next decade. Unless you take the view that King Dollar will be on his throne forever.

    Can you see the problem?

  34. As for Trudeau not wanting the pipeline, again you are wrong, Canada has many of the same striations of amurica and the best thing to happen to him would be the completion of this pipeline and at least a partial restoration of oil prosperity to western Canada

    And the climate can go ***k itself, right? Just as long as dirty Canadian oil is flowing, that’s what matters.

  35. man can not effect the climate

  36. https://nypost.com/2021/01/20/canadian-pm-trudeau-disappointed-at-biden-plan-to-dash-keystone-xl/?utm_source=NYPTwitter&utm_campaign=SocialFlow&utm_medium=SocialFlow

  37. This is two American presidents in a row that have acted with complete disregard for the economic interests of a friendly neighbor

    This guy launched his economic bomb on his first day on the job

    You want to ruin a good relationship? You’re off to a running start Joe.

    This wasn’t meant to harm Canada but it will harm them, what a shock, they noticed. This story isn’t over.

  38. far from it

  39. EP is correct in that the pipeline ban won’t stop the US from importing Alberta crude oil. Only now it will go by rail, which as he says is far more dangerous than a pipeline

    I’ve seen these huge rail trains near residential areas of Cleveland and Chicago.They run through other cities as well

    Some years ago there was an accident involving an oil train at Lac Magantic Quebec which killed 47 persons

    https://www.tsb.gc.ca/eng/rapports-reports/rail/2013/r13d0054/r13d0054-r-es.html

    https://chesapeakeclimate.org/maryland/fighting-crude-oil-by-rail-in-baltimore/

  40. Peter the fact that you keep calling it dirty oil tells me you know nothing about the oilsands, the fact is there is more crude oil in them than exists in most nations of the world. Renewables are great and I encourage as much of them as possible but if you think the world will be oil use free in your or even your kids life is just fantasy

    At least or until they develop Star Trek replicator technologies

  41. I don’t know american rail road specs are but in Canada they have 2 mile long trains that encompas as much as 200 x 200,000lbs or 400 million pounds of crude oil per train. in any given week in Canada there is 1 or 2 derailments in Canada, most are harmles but not all

    Imagine 400,000,000 pounds of crude oil catching fire in down town St. Louis?

    I am not talking out my ass I have worked repairing many derails and accidents as well as rail repairs

  42. And the climate can go ***k itself, right? Just as long as dirty Canadian oil is flowing, that’s what matters.

    with out the Canadian oil the Texas refineries operate less efficiently so create more polution

    quit talking out your ass about things you don’t know

  43. EP nails it to wall.

    The Human race’s existence depends on oil. There is no substitute for it. The species can exist without it as a cave man, but that’s it. Every aspect of our lives involves the use of Oil and other fossil fuel products.

    Besides the obvious heat and electricity all plastics are based on the biproducts of oil.

    We may develop alternative fuels in the next 100yrs but until we learn to manipulate matter on the molecular level plastics with be with us forever.

    Peter your fossil fuel and fossil fuel product free world are at a level of technology that only exist in science fiction…. but that’s where dreams are born.

    Until then Oil is king and the only thing besides food that matters.

  44. Interesting and knowledgeable discussion on this thread. Different passionately held views but well presented. Top of the class y’all 🙂

  45. quit talking out your ass about things you don’t know

    This is what you are supporting. Read the article and have a look at the pictures. Or don’t bother your ass if you are scared that you might have to re-think. Much easier to stay in the fossil fuel echo-chamber:

    “Canada wants to be a climate champion,” says Kevin Taft, author and former leader of the Liberal Party in Alberta. “At the same time, it wants to increase its oil exports.” His most recent book is titled Oil’s Deep State: How the Petroleum Industry Undermines Democracy and Stops Action on Global Warming—in Alberta, and in Ottawa. Canada is warming twice as fast as the rest of the world, according to a new government report. That report also warned that drastic action is the only way to avoid catastrophic outcomes. “We need to act now so our kids can have a healthy planet and good jobs,” Prime Minister Trudeau wrote on Twitter on April 4, 2019…

    However, Canada is not likely to meet its 2020 carbon emission reduction target, experts warn. Nor is it likely to meet its 2030 Paris climate target—and that’s almost entirely due to increasing emissions from the oil and gas sector, which are expected to reach 100 million metric tons a year by then. A study published in April in Nature Communications found that emissions from the Canadian oil sands, measured directly from aircraft, are about 30 percent higher than the figures reported by the industry…

    Air pollution, including acid rain, also plagues the remote region. One study found that acid rain would eventually damage an area almost the size of Germany…”

    https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2019/04/alberta-canadas-tar-sands-is-growing-but-indigenous-people-fight-back/