Smith Slams ‘De Facto Production Cap’ From Ottawa In Victory Speech

Premier Danielle Smith.

Danielle Smith wasted no time re-issuing a message to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

During her victory speech on Monday night, Smith took aim at potential action from Ottawa on the province’s energy industry.

Smith’s United Conservative Party (UCP) government was re-elected, leading in 49 ridings with 52.56 per cent of the popular vote. The NDP was leading in 38 with 44.02 per cent.

“The prime minister is … ready to introduce a de facto production cap on our oil and gas sector that, if implemented, will result in tens of thousands of jobs lost, tens of billions in lost investment, damage our province’s fiscal position and bring economic hardship to Albertans,” Smith said at the Big Four building in Calgary.

“I have made myself clear on this matter to the prime minister in person and in public, but I feel we need to do it again,” she added. “Hopefully the prime minister and his caucus are watching tonight. But let me be clear, this is not a road we can afford to go down. If he persists, he will be hurting Canadians from coast-to-coast and he will strain the patience and goodwill of Albertans in an unprecedented fashion.”

Smith has been UCP leader since taking over from Jason Kenney in October 2022.

Her speech also covered “new restrictions” that she said are planned to be brought forward by the federal government in the coming weeks on electricity generation from natural gas. Smith warned this will cause power bills to rise and endanger the integrity and reliability of the power grid.

“As premier, I cannot under any circumstances allow these contemplated federal policies to be inflicted upon Albertans,” Smith said. “I simply can’t, and I won’t.”

“I invite the prime minister to instead halt the introduction of these harmful policies and come to the table in good faith, to work collaboratively with Alberta on an energy and emissions strategy that will both grow the Alberta and Canadian economies while using the export of Alberta LNG and emerging technologies to achieve meaningful reductions in emissions.”

Smith emphasized that it takes two parties acting in good faith to build a meaningful partnership.

“Alberta is willing to be that partner and we need our federal government to show it is willing to partner in good faith, as well,” she continued. “Now is the time to do so. We are waiting.”

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