MEDICINE HAT, AB — Alberta is ready to fight back.
That is the message Premier Jason Kenney is sending to those who have attacked the oil and gas industry, as he provided more information about the promised Energy War Room Friday afternoon.
Flanked by Energy Minister Sonya Savage and industry stakeholders, Kenney discussed the war room, and its goal for Alberta, prior to a Friday afternoon meeting to determine the war room’s focus.
Kenney says the goal “is to move Alberta from being a passive, responsive and defensive posture to a proactive and assertive strategy where we are proactively telling the truth and where we will no longer accept the campaign of lies and defamation.”
The war room was promised by the United Conservative Party in the spring election, and would provide a timely response to what the government calls misinformation and lies about Alberta’s oil and gas industry. According to a news release, the government is also planning a public inquiry into “foreign-funding meddling” into the province’s politics and economy.
Cypress-Medicine Hat MLA Drew Barnes is welcoming the news.
“What's been happening is there's been too much misinformation, sometimes deliberate, sometimes not, has been spread about the oil and gas industry, particularly the Alberta oil and gas industry,” he said. “So, it’s an essential step for us to stand up, work with our producers, have their support and their financial support as well, to make sure the world knows the truth about how good our oil and gas production is.”
The initiative will cost $30 million, with $20 million being funded from a provincial levy on large emitters. It will be based in Calgary.
Kenney says the plan is to have the war room operating by the end of the summer.
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