Media Release

Upgrader Shut Down

February 24, 2012

EDMONTON – The decision to pull conditional support for the building of a $6.6 billion refinery in the Alberta Industrial Heartland region was yet another blow to Albertans.

After more than a year of negotiations and a conditional commitment agreement that had the support of the Alberta First Nations Energy Centre (AFNEC), internal government analysts, third-party industry and financial experts, the PC government has mysteriously pulled the plug on a project that was dedicated to retaining the full value of provincial bitumen resources.

“Decisions like this undermine people’s trust in the system,” says Alberta Party Leader Glenn Taylor. “Although the project went through the proper process, the PC government has made a seemingly arbitrary decision to pull support for a viable project.”

It is time Albertans started asking the PC government some hard questions and it’s time we started attracting a broader spectrum of Albertans to run for elected office so that Albertans are adequately represented. Clearly our aboriginal community has been let down as they move towards more local autonomy and financial independence.

As a former board member of the Rural Alberta Development Fund (RADF), Party Leader Glenn Taylor has a unique perspective. The RADF funded a project to develop a business model that shows Alberta First Nations how to pursue and manage large economic ventures for their communities. This project led to a partnership between Enoch First Nation and Engineering India Ltd. to plan and construct a petroleum refinery.

“The missing element at that time was Government support,” states Taylor. “In the end we really tried to help them build that relationship. Projects like RADF’s were to prepare the First Nations People to take on just the kind of projects that the PC government has shut down.”


For further information please contact:

Robbie Kreger-Smith, Communications Chair

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