Growing the Economy

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WHAT IS RESPONSIBLE RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT?:

Responsible development creates thriving communities

Responsible development balances the need of the community and the needs of a project while safeguarding the environment. Whether the project is residential, industrial, commercial or infrastructure, they are all necessary to build the province but they need to be completed in a responsible way. Natural resources play a crucial role in BC’s economy and Canada is fortunate to have an abundance of natural wealth, including large reserves of natural gas, minerals and metals, as well as forests that spread across our country.

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Responsible development utilizes the resources available to BC while mitigating risks and incorporating a high standard of environmental review, ensuring the least amount of harm to the land. Our resource industries in BC have made great progress in protecting the environment while providing jobs that support families and paying taxes that support hospitals and schools. Many companies go beyond regulation to take a balanced approach to meeting the environmental and social needs of the community.   As ICBA continues to advocate for responsible development, we encourage you to stand alongside us. When projects get approved, it creates growing and thriving cities. It means jobs for our kids. It helps pay for community centers and libraries, hospitals and schools. It means more doctors, nurses and teacher while keeping the cost of government affordable for everyone. We urge you to join us and get involved with bringing projects to Yes.   Speak up so that decision-makers hear loud and clear that the majority of British Columbians want a strong economy based on a realistic vision of our future.

NATURAL RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT: SUPPORT AND CONFIDENCE

Support responsible resource development

Natural resource development is good for BC

Can be balanced and mindful of environmental impact

Source: ICBA, NRG Research Group Survey, Resource Works Ipsos Reid Survey

MAJOR PROJECT REVIEW PROCESSES

WORTHY OF OUR TRUST AND CONFIDENCE

The BC Construction Monitor

The latest issue of the BC Construction Monitor takes a close look at what major project review processes actually consist of. What we found is that they are in fact rigorous, science-based, highly responsive to public and Aboriginal input, and much more comprehensive than many people have been led to believe. Learn more. 

PROJECTS WE SUPPORT

Pacific NorthWest and other LNG projects

Pacific NorthWest LNG would create up to 4,500 construction jobs and 330 long-term positions.

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Trans Mountain Expansion Pipeline

TMEP will play a large role in creating jobs and wealth for local families, and help build a stronger future for B.C.

trans-mountain-piopeline

George Massey Tunnel Replacement

A new bridge would be safer and less costly to build, with less impact to the environment.

georgemasseytunnel

Site C Clean Energy

In a competitive global economy, Site C Clean Energy dam offers decades of reliable and inexpensive electricity for British Columbians.

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openingmines
expandingports
buldinghomes
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Pacific NorthWest LNG needs your support

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Fast Facts:

○ Up to 330 direct operational long-term jobs
○ Approximately 300 local spin-off jobs
○ Up to 4,500 jobs during peak construction
○ Contribute up to $1.3 billion annually to federal, provincial and municipal governments in various taxes and royalties

IS THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TRYING TO SAY ‘NO’ TO B.C. LNG?

It was one of the largest expressions of grassroots concern and opinion that we’ve seen recently in B.C. Thousands of residents in Fort Nelson, Fort St. John and Terrace held “Northern Jobs for Northern Families” rallies. They were driven by deep concern with the impact of the resource downturn on their communities, businesses and families and by a deep conviction that the development of an LNG export industry in B.C. is a decisive turnaround opportunity.I can’t think of any better evidence that LNG projects have the coveted stamp of “social licence.”

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And it extends across the northern region that will be most directly involved in the industry’s development — from the gas-producing areas in the northeast to the coastal northwest where the export facilities will be located.rally crop2

So it would have been hugely welcome if these rallies had been followed, as expected, by a federal decision on environmental approval of one the largest and most promising LNG proposals. Instead, on the weekend prior to the anticipated decision, federal regulators “paused the legislated timeline” in the review of the Pacific Northwest LNG project near Prince Rupert.

A decision from Ottawa has now been pushed to three months after the proponent is able to respond to yet further requests for information. We now have an uncertain end date for a review process that began some three years ago and was originally expected to take only a year.

This willingness to impose further delay on an already extensively reviewed project is troubling, particularly in combination with the federal determination to impose additional review requirements on major projects. Project-specific assessments of upstream greenhouse gas emissions, for example, will add to the complexity and uncertainty of reviews. And they are a regulatory add-on to what is already strong action on carbon pricing and reduction at the provincial level.

There are a lot of ways to scuttle natural resource development and other major projects. A clear “no” is the simplest and probably most principled. But another approach, that may come with less political cost, is simply to delay and defer. To play review processes out until an investment- or market-related window closes and proponents are left with no choice but to pursue opportunities elsewhere.

We’ve been warned on this. Last month the ambassador from Japan, where one of the major backers of Pacific Northwest LNG is headquartered, noted in a submission to regulators that: “If the approval of the environment assessment is delayed further, Canada may run the risk of missing the chance to export LNG to the growing Asian market for a long time.”

BC Rally LNG NOW2And now it has been delayed further. Is the new federal government playing for time, and looking for an indirect way to scuttle LNG development in B. C.? Knowing the importance northern British Columbians place on such potential development — and the difference it could make to businesses and workers coping with downtime and uncertainty — I certainly hope not.

The delayed decision on Pacific Northwest LNG was bad news for northerners and for all British Columbians and Canadians. The Conference Board of Canada recently pegged the impact of a 30-million-tonnes-per-year LNG industry at $7.4 billion in national economic growth annually and increase national employment by 65,000 jobs. These are jobs created by the private sector. They are not taxpayer supported jobs. A significant proportion of those benefits is now at further risk.

I think it’s too soon to conclude that that’s what the new federal government intended. But it could certainly stand to demonstrate an understanding of the importance of and depth of support for these projects, and an ability to make timely decisions on them.

Philip Hochstein is president of the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association of B.C., whose 1,200 members build in every construction sector and are involved in virtually all major capital projects in B.C.

Article first published in the The Province.

Myths and Facts

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Getting to Yes: It’s where British Columbians want to be

“British Columbians understand the importance of natural-resource and other types of major projects, and are confident we can pursue them in an environmentally responsible way.”

The Independent Contractors and Businesses Association of British Columbia © 1975 - 2016

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