Can Alberta Outlast BC If Oil Shipments Are Restricted?

Alberta is used to energy shocks and can quickly adjust to the environment, especially an oversupply.  BC gets 80% of its gasoline from Alberta which cannot possibly be replaced with tanker trucks from the US… because BC does not have any pipelines their either.  Also, yesterday the Premier of Saskatchewan has said his province will also cut off BC if Alberta does.

Put simply, BC is completely beholden to Alberta for Energy and Alberta is beholden to BC for very little of importance.

If BC were to sue Alberta for cutting off the supply:

  1. Its is highly unlikely BC would win (see this video)
  2. BC would still be in the dark for weeks/months/years as the court case dragged on and then any penalties would almost certainly be eliminated as part of a negotiated settlement to turn the pipes back on and get the Trans Mountain pipeline constructed

The question here is not, can Alberta shut down petroleum shipments to BC (or anywhere else), but should they as part of a negotiating strategy.  We think not, but Alberta needs ready the tools in case this draconian step becomes necessary.

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