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Alberta

“Albertans want jobs, not an ‘aid package’ Alberta Environment and Parks Minister says Tech Mine must be approved

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From the Province of Alberta

Teck Frontier project: Minister Nixon

Minister of Environment and Parks Jason Nixon issued the following statement on Alberta’s position regarding the Teck Frontier oilsands mine project:

“I want to be crystal clear. Albertans are proud people. We have never viewed our relationship with the federal government as one based on charity, and we’re not about to start now.

“Albertans want jobs, not an ‘aid package’ from Ottawa.

“Teck is not a political gift – it deserves to be approved on its merits. If the federal government takes seriously its commitment to science-driven, evidence-based decision-making, then it will accept the recommendation of the regulatory agencies and approve it. In our view, the federal cabinet’s pending decision on the independent joint review panel’s recommendation to approve Teck Frontier is in no way linked to Alberta’s ask regarding an equalization rebate (or other unrelated requests).

“The project has undergone a rigorous 10-year review, including a recommendation for approval from the independent federal regulator. Teck has played by the rules endorsed by Ottawa – including by the current federal government. To arbitrarily reject the project at the eleventh hour for political reasons would send a chilling signal to international investors.

“The Frontier project will directly employ up to 7,000 workers during construction and up to 2,500 workers during operation. An estimated $70 billion in taxes will be collected over the life of the mine, along with billions of dollars of economic activity that will ultimately spread throughout all of Alberta and Canada.

“All of the 14 directly affected First Nations have reached agreements with the company, and Frontier will provide large numbers of jobs for Indigenous Canadians. They recognize that responsible resource development can serve as a path to prosperity.

“Teck has committed to leading environmental standards for emissions, water and reclamation. The Teck Frontier project will have emissions of approximately one-half of the oilsands industry average, and lower carbon intensity than half of the oil currently refined in the United States. The company has also recently committed to going net zero by 2050.

“We do not view a decision on Frontier as something to be traded away or politicized. For us this issue goes beyond politics – Albertans want approval plain and simple.

“Prime Minister Trudeau has emphasized his desire to work with Alberta and to preserve national unity. It’s time he backed up his words with action.

“Albertans are watching closely.”

After 15 years as a TV reporter with Global and CBC and as news director of RDTV in Red Deer, Duane set out on his own 2008 as a visual storyteller. During this period, he became fascinated with a burgeoning online world and how it could better serve local communities. This fascination led to Todayville, launched in 2016.

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Alberta

Homan remains in top spot after stealing point in 10th end for win over Carey

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CALGARY — Ontario’s Rachel Homan kicked off play in the championship pool Friday with a 7-6 victory over Chelsea Carey of Team Wild Card One at the Canadian women’s curling playdowns.

Carey, who’s filling in at skip for Tracy Fleury this week, had hammer in the 10th end but gave up a steal of one when she barely missed a runback double-takeout attempt.

The top-seeded Homan improved to 8-1 along with Canada’s Kerri Einarson, who defeated Saskatchewan’s Sherry Anderson 10-6.

In other early games at the Markin MacPhail Centre, Alberta’s Laura Walker needed an extra end to get by Quebec’s Laurie St-Georges 7-6 and Manitoba’s Jennifer Jones posted a 12-8 win over Beth Peterson of Team Wild Card Three.

Another draw was scheduled for Friday night and three more draws were set for Saturday.

Homan, a three-time Hearts champion, started slowly by settling for singles in three of the first five ends. Carey, who edged Homan in the 2019 Scotties final, picked up deuces in the second and fourth before giving up a steal in the sixth.

Carey tried to blank the seventh end but her stone hung around for a point. Homan was a tad wide on an up-weight raise attempt in the eighth, allowing Carey to steal for a two-point cushion.

A Homan deuce tied the game but Carey couldn’t take advantage of hammer coming home.

Jones, meanwhile, who’s aiming for a record seventh national title, stole five points in the 10th end to improve to 7-2. Saskatchewan, Alberta and Quebec were tied in fourth place at 6-3 and the remaining wild-card teams were at 5-4.

The top three teams in the eight-team pool will advance to the playoffs Sunday.

The second- and third-place teams will meet in an afternoon semifinal for a berth in the evening final against the first-place team.

The Hearts winner will return as Team Canada at the 2022 national playdowns in Thunder Bay, Ont. The champion will also earn a berth in the Olympic Trials in November at Saskatoon.

The men’s national championship — the Tim Hortons Brier — starts March 5 at the same Canada Olympic Park venue. The Hearts is the first of six bonspiels to be held at the arena through late April.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 26, 2021.

Follow @GregoryStrongCP on Twitter.

The Canadian Press

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Alberta

Alberta and its physicians move to end ugly feud over fees with new tentative deal

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EDMONTON — The Alberta government and its 11,000 physicians have taken a first step toward resolving an ugly, fractious year-long dispute over fees and working conditions.

Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Dr. Paul Boucher, the head of the Alberta Medical Association, say they have reached a tentative deal on a new master agreement.

Boucher declined to provide specifics, saying he first wants to let members discuss and ratify the deal and that it will work within the government’s “budget imperatives.”

Alberta’s physicians collectively receive $5 billion a year, and the Alberta budget will see that figure rise slightly to $5.3 billion over the next three years.

A year ago, Shandro unilaterally cancelled the master agreement with the AMA and began imposing new rules on fees and visits, saying physician costs were rising too high year over year and were not sustainable.

That led some doctors to withdraw services, the AMA launched a lawsuit and Shandro was criticized for fighting with doctors in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 26, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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february, 2021

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