Staff and students wait for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to arrive for a funding announcement at TRIUMF, CanadaÕs national particle accelerator owned and operated as a joint venture by a consortium of universities, at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver on Thursday November 1, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Trudeau reassures business leaders on Trans Mountain pipeline’s future

The prime minister made the comments in Vancouver this week

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the Federal Court of Appeal has laid out a blueprint for his government to follow in getting the Trans Mountain pipeline approved.

Trudeau said Thursday the court’s decision to quash the government’s pipeline approval in August will help get large projects approved in the future.

“I will admit that the Federal Court of Appeal decision was really frustrating,” he told the Vancouver Board of Trade in a question-and-answer session.

But he said it has led the government to making changes that will give business more information on how to get major projects on track.

“So what the court is actually doing is laying out with more clarity the path to get big projects approved,” he said.

READ MORE: Trudeau says Trans Mountain pipeline will go through

Under changes the government is making, when a company decides to invest in a project they will know what timeline it is looking at and what the risks are, he said, adding that once the process has been successfully completed, it will also protect businesses from lawsuits on consultation and environmental protections.

“So this is about creating that greater degree of clarity for businesses,” he said.

Trudeau said the new process the government is laying out is also about restoring people’s trust in government institutions and businesses.

“People are cynical about businesses’ and institutions’ ability to think about the long term. That’s a reality of our time,” he said. ”That’s one of the things that has led to a certain amount of populism and mistrust of institutions and process.”

READ MORE: Liberal government to buy Trans Mountain pipeline for $4.5 billion

The Federal Court of Appeal cited the National Energy Board’s failure to examine impacts on the ocean ecosystem, including B.C.’s endangered southern resident killer whales, in its Trans Mountain decision. It also found Canada failed to meaningfully consult with First Nations during the final phase of discussions.

The federal government, which purchased the pipeline and expansion project for $4.5 billion, ordered the energy board to review the project’s marine shipping effects within 155 days and issue a report no later than Feb. 22. The new approach has been criticized by some Indigenous leaders and environmental groups.

Earlier Thursday, Trudeau announced funding to build a hub for nuclear medicine at Canada’s national particle accelerator in Vancouver.

Trudeau made the announcement after meeting employees and touring the TRIUMF site, which is a joint venture of a consortium of universities.

He said the Institute for Advanced Medical Isotopes will provide a first-of-its-kind facility in Canada where scientists and industry partners will work together to advance research including drug development and cancer therapy.

The new 2,500-square-metre building will house a particle accelerator, research facilities and laboratories.

Trudeau said the facility will help Canada stay a leader in medical isotope research.

“We know that for our country to lead in an ever-evolving economy and create the jobs of tomorrow, we have to invest in our scientists and in the institutions that support them,” he said.

Medical isotopes are safe radioactive substances used to diagnose and treat conditions of the heart, circulatory system and organs, allowing scientists to see what is happening inside the body in a non-invasive way.

The new facility is valued at more than $50 million and is also supported by contributions from the British Columbia government, BC Cancer Foundation, the University of British Columbia and funding from philanthropists.

RELATED: TIMELINE – Key dates in history of Trans Mountain pipeline

Trudeau also met Thursday with Vancouver mayor-elect Kennedy Stewart and Doug McCallum, who was recently elected the mayor of Surrey.

McCallum ran on a promise to scrap plans for a light rail transit system in Surrey and instead wants a SkyTrain line from the city centre to neighbouring Langley.

In September, the federal and British Columbia governments reiterated their commitment to funding two major rapid transit projects in Metro Vancouver, including the LRT line in Surrey.

Ottawa and B.C. are spending more than $3 billion on the projects, which will see 5.7 kilometres of track and six stations added to the SkyTrain subway line along Broadway. Eleven new stations will be built along 10.5 kilometres of street-level track in Surrey, which would create the first light-rail system in B.C.

Asked if the federal government would spend any additional money in Surrey to build a SkyTrain line, Trudeau said: “Our approach on infrastructure projects has never been that Ottawa knows best. We always have believed that working with folks on the ground, locally elected representatives who tell us and who know best what the needs of their communities are.”

Trudeau said there are several mayors in the Lower Mainland who will be discussing their plans.

“And I can commit that the federal government will be there as a partner as they determine their priorities,” he added.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Let the Games begin!

Team Alberta takes home gold and silver in speed skating on day one

WATCH: Historic night in Red Deer as 2019 Canada Winter Games kicks off

Star-studded Opening Ceremony features athletes from across Canada

Athletes’ medals unveiled at the official kick-off of 2019 Canada Winter Games

Medals depict Central Alberta landscape and pay tribute to First Nations

WATCH: Canada Winter Games are finally here

Final leg of torch relay kicked off at Fort Normandeau

Red Deer man loses car after being caught twice driving with suspended licence

The Ponoka Integrated Traffic Unit ticketed the man in December and on Valentine’s Day

Mermen calendar targets ‘toxic masculinity,’ raises big money for charities

Newfoundland and Labrador Beard and Moustache Club gave a cheque for more than $202,000 to Violence Prevention NL

‘Our entire municipality is heartbroken’: Seven children die in Halifax house fire

A man and woman remained in hospital Tuesday afternoon, the man with life-threatening injuries

Team Alberta takes exciting victory in wheelchair basketball, remains undefeated

After three games in the tournament, Alberta is sitting in first place of its pool

UPDATED: ‘Violent’ B.C. man back in custody after Alberta arrest

Prince George man with ties to Vernon was being sought by police

After a week away, SNC-Lavalin questions await MPs returning to Parliament

Two have resigned already: Jody Wilson-Raybould was veterans affairs minister and Gerald Butts was Trudeau’s principal secretary

Chanel: Iconic couturier Karl Lagerfeld has died

He spent virtually his entire career at luxury labels catering to the very wealthy

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh calls for public inquiry over SNC-Lavalin questions

Vancouver member of Parliament Jody Wilson-Raybould resigned from cabinet last week

Body found after apparent house explosion in Calgary, police investigating

Sgt. Dwayne Lepchuk declined to say whose remains were found

Canadian airlines waiting for guidance from Ottawa over X gender option

Major U.S. airlines said they will change their process so passengers can identify themselves along non-binary lines

Most Read