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Vaughn Palmer: War of words with Alberta over beef, oil, wine, trade

08 February 2018

"I think it says a lot for Canada, how bad we are that she's using those words "we're banning the import of British Columbia wine" just as if to say 'we're banning the import of American wine, or French wine or any other kind of wine".

The B.C. government is looking at restricting the expansion of bitumen through the province until it's satisfied a spill can be cleaned up, which was countered by the threat of a lawsuit from Alberta along with a ban on B.C. wine imports.

The Tweets only include first names and the community Notley claims they came from.

Premier Rachel Notley made the announcement on Tuesday, as the tensions over the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline continue to escalate.

Prior to Notley's letter Tweetfest, Boundary-Similkameen MLA Linda Larson, who represents several wine regions in the South Okanagan and Similkameen, fired out a Tweet of her own.

He notes that both the National Energy Board and the federal cabinet approved Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline expansion in 2016 after determining it was in Canada's national interest.

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Horgan says after Tuesday's wine ban was announced by Notley, his office got in touch with the BC Wine Institute, among others suppliers.

British Columbia Premier John Horgan says he refuses to be provoked into a trade war with Alberta.

COMOX, B.C- A Comox Valley winery stands to lose thousands due to Alberta's B.C wine ban.

While the dispute between B.C. and Alberta simmered Wednesday, reaction continued to boil.

"This completely came out of left field, we were looking south to the USA market and the NAFTA negotiation", Miles Prodan with the B.C. Wine Institute said.

The wine institute has also contacted the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission and have confirmed anyone with a booked "Advance Shipping Notice" will have wines accepted by Connect Logistics until February 14. "I'm here for B.C., not for Alberta", he said.

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The Institute's president and CEO Miles Prodan said he was "disappointed" with boycotting wineries "over a yet-to-be-determined British Columbia government policy in a different sector".

"I certainly hope we've seen the end of the back and forth", Horgan told a news conference in Victoria on Wednesday.

Notley has cooperated with Trudeau on implementing a carbon-pricing plan to reduce emissions, and Trudeau in turn backed the Trans Mountain project.

"I think if anything it's a shame for the people of Alberta because they're missing out on some really lovely wine and as an alternative they're probably going to be buying worldwide which doesn't help anyone in Canada". And I know that our decision will have an impact on some small businesses. "Their passion and dedication to their craft is something we have been proud to share with our customers over the years and it hurts us to know that they are the ones being punished by this misguided decision".

Consider that B.C., Alberta and Saskatchewan - and Manitoba in 2020 - are members of the New West Partnership, an agreement in effect since July 1, 2010, encouraging the further integration of the Western provinces.

"Whether it's a pipeline or a transmission line, markets and investors need certainty".

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Vaughn Palmer: War of words with Alberta over beef, oil, wine, trade