Mayor Don Scott is calling Teck Resources’ decision to withdraw its application for its Frontier project a ‘gut-punch’ to the region.
The oil company announced Sunday evening they were moving away from the oilsands as they no longer see a ‘constructive path forward for the project.’
Scott tells Mix News, as devastating as this is, it’s not the end of the world.
“We were very hopeful after last week, so it’s very disappointing news but there are a lot of projects that have been approved so I think we still have a lot to be optimistic about in the region.”
Frontier would have produced around 260,000 barrels per day and put around $70 billion into Canada’s economy. It was expected to create around 7,000 jobs during construction and another 2,500 through operations.
Although this project isn’t moving forward, Scott believes other companies will continue to attempt to make projects of this size.
“The world needs our oil, we got pipelines that are being built… there’s more innovation that’s happening. I’m disappointed about [Teck’s] decision but there’s going to be others in the future and hopefully, the government of Canada will do all it can to help other levels of government attract this investment and business.”
He adds the approval process does need to change before any serious investment will happen.
MLA’s Disappointed With Teck’s Decision
Both of Wood Buffalo’s MLA’s are calling Teck’s decision devastating.
Tany Yao, MLA for Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo, says this feels like a ‘kick to the groin.’
He adds it’s frustrating as the company did nothing wrong.
“The fact that it passed all the legal requirements and the federal government choose to put another impediment in place… that’s extremely disappointing.”
Laila Goodridge, MLA for Fort McMurray-Lac La Biche, agreed – noting the company was doing everything in its power to consult with Indigenous groups and limit the impact Frontier would have on the environment.
“We have some of the highest environmental and regulatory standards in the world and the decision made by Teck was the result of regulatory uncertainty from the federal government.”
Moving forward, their big concern is how international investors will react to the decision.
Yao believes many are already looking away from the Canadian oilsands.
“We understand that the message that is being sent internationally is Canada is not a good place to do business.”
LISTEN: On the edition of Fort McMurray Matters, we hear from Mayor Don Scott and MLA Tany Yao about Teck Resources withdrawing its application for its Frontier project. We also learn more about Waypoints’ Child and Youth Advocacy Centre #ymm #rmwb https://t.co/eh8oXnhtqP
– MIX 103.7 News (@Mix1037FMNews) February 24, 2020