The oil and shipping industries are waiting to see if Canada’s newly elected Prime Minister Justin Trudeau acts on one particular aspect of his pre-election manifesto: a ban on oil tankers on the country’s western seaboard.
Trudeau’s Liberal party swept to office in Monday’s general election, ending nearly a decade of Conservative rule under Stephen Harper.
A large part of the Liberal constituency is environmentally conscious voters and they will expect the Trudeau administration to make good on talk of barring oil-carrying ships from the ecologically vulnerable north coast of British Columbia.
The party promises had even gone into specific locations, naming the Dixon Entrance, Hecate Strait, and Queen Charlotte Sound regions as potentially off limits.
In contrast the outgoing Conservative Harper had been more bullish on fossil-fuel exploitation, favouring new crude oil shipping terminals on the west coast to export crude oil from the Alberta and Saskatchewan oil sands.