The Conservatives would like to remind you they support Keystone XL

Joe Oliver v. American billionaires


The latest assessment of the Keystone XL pipeline has been released—see Luiza Savage and Andrew Leach for the details—and now the Conservative party has a video they’d like you to see. Here it is with the note that went out in Joe Oliver’s name to Conservative supporters.


As you may have heard, some American billionaires are using their wealth to attack our oil industry.

These billionaires ignore the fact that U.S companies are major players in the Canadian oil sands, and the fact that Keystone XL will create tens of thousands of well-paying jobs for Canadians AND Americans.

They also ignore the fact that the U.S. State Department has recognized that Keystone XL will not pose a serious threat to the environment.

So today, we are hitting back with an ad of our own — an ad that tells the truth.

Watch the ad here and add your name to support Canada’s oil sands:


Joe Oliver
MP, Eglinton—Lawrence

PS: Help get the truth out to as many people as possible – share our new ad on Facebook and Twitter.

Despite being styled as a response to American attacks and including a demand to some unidentified individual to “approve Keystone XL,” the ad apparently won’t be airing in the United States, though, of course, the Internet transcends international borders.

The line that “Keystone XL will create tens of thousands of well-paying jobs for Canadians AND Americans” is possibly worth a discussion, but it’s also sufficiently vague. The job creation projections for Keystone XL have been friskeddebated and considered (and disputed by the President of the United States). It depends, of course, on what you’re measuring and projecting. Last year, the Globe went with either 2,200 jobs or 442 person-years in Canada (the latter a measure of direct and indirect jobs during construction, seemingly taken from this NEB report). The State Department’s report today estimates that “during construction, proposed Project spending would support approximately 42,100 jobs (direct, indirect, and induced), and approximately $2 billion in earnings throughout the United States.” Once in service, the pipeline would require “35 permanent employees and 15 temporary contractors.”

The New Democrats, conversely, argue that Keystone XL would ship jobs across the border, but the NDP stance on jobs and oil sands development is subject to a different set of questions (see also Andrew Leach and Stephen Gordon).


The Conservatives would like to remind you they support Keystone XL

  1. With friends like the Harper Cons (especially in the person of Joe Oliver), the Canadian petroleum industry doesn’t stand a chance.

    Which is a shame because they could have been responsible corporate citizens and environmentally sensible stewards of Canada’s fossil fuel inventory without these idiotically enthusiastic cheerleaders and “enablers”.

  2. The case in favour of Keystone is clear and the information is out there for anyone who cares to find it… but who was the bozo who thought this would help?

    • Your friends the Cons. If there was a little more intelligence in their ranks, they could have easily passed this.

      • Americans are buying our oil, lots of it. And the cons have been doing their homework studiously.

        Premier Alison Redford has been down to Washington six times in the last year quietly and effectively selling Alberta oil to Americans.

        • I thought it was well known that Premier Redford is a Liberal.

  3. Either you support Keystone, or you stand by the child pornographers – er, I mean American billionaires.

    As a side note: can someone explain to me why the Conservatives were so bent out of shape about supposed foreign involvement in the anti oil sands lobby a few years ago? Shouldn’t they sit back and let the Americans decide this for themselves, by their own rules of fair play?

    • Is that a serious suggestion ? That it is somehow inappropriate for the Canadian government to support a project they believe is in our national interest ? That we should be silent about it ?

      NAFTA, Free Trade in general, our strategic alliance … I think there are plenty of grounds for intervention.

      I see no difference between this and the back and forth over autos and South Korea or origin labelling for Euro cheeses.

      Nations always lobby each other to advance their interests when it comes to trading relationships.

      • Lobbying is one thing, lobbing insults and inaccuracies over the fence every fifteen minutes is another. It started with the ridiculous Ethical Oil Campaign and went downhill from there. At this point they should attempt to do no more harm, i.e. shut the hell up.

        • Yes, the way to advance Canada’s interests in Washington is to shut the hell up. I look forward to a progressive, enlightened Liberal government advancing our interests by doing just that, i.e., nothing.

  4. The jobs for Canadians will be there only while the pipeline is being built.

    • Thousands of Canadians are involved in obtaining and processing the oilsands oil before being shipped. It’s not like there’s only 50 people living and working in Fort McMurray you know.

      • In the end, after the pipeline is built, it is predicted it will take some 50 primary workers and some 35 more additional ones. Those already working isn’t an increase, chris – They are already there.

        • You’re fogetting the 1,500 permanent refinery jobs to upgrade the oil.

          • This is a just PIPELINE that carries the oil and a pipeline carries just so much oil at a time. You already have the personnel.

            People will be required to build the pipeline but as soon as it’s in operation, minimal people will be required to check for the leakage that will inevitably occur down the road and it seems to me that one small airplane can cover quite an area in a day.

          • The pipeline necessitates hiring 1,500 to upgrade it in Texas.

          • Exactly, jobs for Texas, NOT for Canada.

          • Idiot, the oilsands companies like MEG Energy are still hiring with the expectation of production INCREASING form their leases when additional pipeline capacity is available. Then we wonder why the Conservatives have this kind of comercial, because of people like you have no idea what they are talking about!

          • No, Joe. The “conservatives” put out commercials for only two reasons, the first being to cut their opponents to ribbons with lies and innuendos (just like Faux does) OR in this case, to broadcast spinnery when too few of us are swallowing the BS.

          • Whereas when Liberals and New Democrats put out commercials, there is no spin whatsoever. They’re like academic essays, they’re so damn scrupulous and factual.

          • Dunno, I’ve never seen one.

    • Every construction job is “temporary”. That doesn’t mean that they’re not real jobs.

      • Temporary is the keyword.

        • So we shouldn’t include any construction jobs when calculating jobs numbers, just because all construction jobs are “temporary”?

          • Generally workmen work for a Construction company that moves from job to job, working on building after building. Now a total or even a partial housing stoppage would give you the same conditions as what the pipeline workers will face after the pipe (god forbid) is built.

          • Generally workmen work for a Construction company that moves from job to job, working on building after building

            Who exactly do you think is building Keystone XL, if not construction companies?

          • When I think of construction companies, I think of buildings – apartments, homes, etc. I wasn’t aware they lay pipe too – at least none that I know of.

  5. “Tens of thousands of well-paying jobs” — For a pipeline? Give me a break!

    No wait, bad idea. If there is a break, then there will be tens of thousands of well paying jobs, mainly for lawyers and clean up crews.

    Don’t ya just love how that pipeline in the video turns gold under the setting sun? And the talk of American billionaires set out to destroy the Canadian oil billionaires?

    Where are the unicorns?

    • You obviously don’t live close to a major pipeline, or if you do, your head is in the sand. Major pipeline projects really stimulate the local economy – lots of money gets spent by work crews – hotels and motels fill up, and eateries are bustling. Lots of toys get bought by workers flush with cash. Some welders became millionaires when TCPL put in line 3 across Canada.

      • I don’t think anybody disputes that a new pipeline will create lots of jobs during its development. The point is that those jobs are temporary, and the number of actual permanent jobs created is tiny.

        • The number of permanent jobs created is large. It will take thousands of Canadians to mine/upgrade the oilsands oil daily before it is shipped via pipeline and those jobs will remain as long as the pipeline is in operation.

          • Chris, these people are hopeless!

        • Every construction job on the planet is temporary. Even ‘permanent’ jobs seldom last. Ever been surplussed? Laid off/ Fired? It’s just semantics.

  6. Obama has been bought off by the special interests in his own party. Zealots like Tom Steyer who donate heavily to the Democrats have in essence bribed Obama to avoid making a decision.