Alberta inquiry into oil and gas foes could face legal challenge from Ecojustice


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An environmental legislation group is threatening authorized motion if the Alberta authorities’s inquiry into the funding of oil and fuel trade foes continues as is.

Vancouver-based Ecojustice issued the warning in a letter to inquiry commissioner Steve Allan and has given him 30 days to reply.

Kenney government launches inquiry into foreign-funded groups that criticize Alberta’s oil industry

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has mentioned deep-pocketed American charities have bankrolled efforts to dam Canadian power improvement for years.

In saying the $2.5-million inquiry this summer time, Kenney mentioned it might discover out if any legal guidelines have been damaged and advocate any acceptable authorized and coverage motion.

Ecojustice says within the letter there’s an affordable apprehension that the inquiry will likely be biased towards the teams it’s investigating.

LISTEN: Ecojustice lawyer Barry Robinson joins Rob Breakenridge to debate objections the legislation group has towards the Alberta authorities’s inquiry to grease opponents

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The group additionally says the inquiry dangers violating rights to freedom of expression and meeting protected underneath the Canadian Constitution of Rights and Freedoms.

Ecojustice provides that the inquiry have to be procedurally honest, that means anybody known as earlier than it should be capable of cross-examine witnesses and obtain copies of paperwork submitted as proof, amongst different issues.

It’s proposing amendments to the inquiry’s phrases of reference that might repair a few of these points.

Ecojustice government director Devon Web page likened the inquiry because it stands to a “medieval witch hunt.”

“It wasn’t about discovering the reality. It was about discovering witches,” he mentioned in an interview.

“It is a political train. It’s meant to focus on Canadians who’re involved about local weather change and silence them.”

Watch beneath (Nov. 12, 2018): Opponents of Alberta’s oil usually use defending the atmosphere as a key argument however Vivian Krause believes it’s really about American financial pursuits. She shares findings with Jennifer Crosby.

The inquiry is one plank of the United Conservative authorities’s technique to battle again towards critics of Alberta’s beleagured oil and fuel trade, which has struggled to get its product to markets as new pipelines are mired in delays.

When Kenney introduced the inquiry, he mentioned it might “serve discover that Alberta will not permit hostile curiosity teams to dictate our financial future as some of the moral main producers of power on the earth.”

Kenney says higher risk tolerance, ability to act quickly key for Alberta energy ‘war room’

Allan, the commissioner, is a forensic and restructuring accountant with greater than 40 years expertise. His means to compel witness testimony and data is proscribed to Alberta, however Justice Minister Doug Schweitzer has mentioned a lot of the data Allan wants is publicly accessible and he’ll be capable of journey exterior Alberta to collect extra.

The primary section of the inquiry is to give attention to truth discovering, with public hearings to observe if essential. Allan is to ship his closing report back to the federal government subsequent summer time.

Watch beneath (June 27): Alberta premier Jason Kenney speaks about “foreign-funded” pursuits attempting to “landlock Canadian power.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed Sept. 18, 2019.

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