Fort McMurray or bust

The NDP has announced the details of Thomas Mulcair’s trip to Alberta. He will receive a helicopter tour of the oil sands tomorrow morning, followed by a tour of Suncor’s facilities (including the Flue Gas Desulphurization Unit, the mine complex, a virtual tour of the extraction process, an overview of the upgrading process, an overview of former Pond 1 reclamation and a discussion on tailings reduction operations). Then he will meet with the mayor of Fort McMurray and then he will depart for Edmonton for a meeting with the deputy premier. He’ll be joined by Peter Julian, Megan Leslie and Linda Duncan.

Mr. Mulcair was asked about the trip earlier this week.

The most important element for us in going out there is to talk about the sustainable development of all of our natural resources, but, of course in particular there, the oil sands. This is about the future of the economy of the country, maintaining the equilibrium, coming up with a strategy that will allow us to maintain a vital industrial sector. But of course it’s about the enforcement of federal legislation. Since the beginning we’ve made it clear that we’re very concerned that the federal government is not enforcing federal law—the Navigable Waters Act, the Fisheries Act, migratory birds, not looking at cumulative health effects, not looking at groundwater, not monitoring the water in any way shape or form. A year ago, they talked about monitoring water. Now they’re dropping it completely. Some of the people who were supposed to be on that committee haven’t even been convened to a meeting. So these are all things that the federal government is not doing. But, of course, I want to come and talk to people in Fort Mac, see more about the actual installations themselves.