Kinder Morgan has ceased all non-essential spending on the $7.4-billion pipeline project that would twin the existing pipeline between Burnaby, B.C., and Edmonton.
As evidence of intent to punish, about one-third of the statement of claim is devoted to a recounting of a trail of events that began Jan 30.
He said it would be a "political disaster" for both Morneau and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley if the pipeline in-service date is delayed beyond 2020 because both governments have staked their reputations on it being built.
Premier Notley initially praised the Horgan move as a step in the right direction ("stepping back from the brink and abiding by the law") and suspended her wine boycott. Premier John Horgan then shelved the threat to restrict bitumen in favour of asking the courts to rule on the extent of B.C.'s powers, if any, to regulate same.
British Columbia is also suing Alberta for passing a law that will allow it to choke off the supply of fuel to B.C., which Ms. Notley says she is prepared to use.
Kinder Morgan has given until May 31 to receive certainty on the ability for it to complete the project, for which it has federal approval, in a timely manner.
"I'm very concerned that we are missing an opportunity here in this nation to advance our economic benefit here, not just in Saskatchewan, but in Western Canada and the nation of Canada", Moe said. "That is not a thing we are going to let happen".
But he later told reporters that Alberta's demand for a pipeline pact failed.
"A significant disruption in the supply of gasoline, diesel, and crude oil from Alberta to British Columbia would cause British Columbia irreparable harm", the document asserts.
Greater Vancouver Board of Trade CEO Iain Black, who was part of the one-day business mission to Alberta, told StarMetro if Kinder Morgan pulls the plug on Trans Mountain, it would send a bad economic signal to investors.
Horgan and Moe, along with the leaders of Manitoba, Nunavut, Yukon and Northwest Territories emerged with a joint communique prioritizing key inter-provincial issues, but Alberta refused to sign because it did not contain stronger language in support of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
From the NDP election platform: "The Kinder Morgan pipeline is not in B.C.'s interest ..."
In a report released Thursday morning, economists Benjamin Tal, Andrew Grantham and Katherine Judge mapped out the need for additional pipeline capacity to ship oil to Asia, the U.S. Gulf Coast and the eastern seaboard. "We will use every tool in our tool box to stop the project from going ahead".
Oates says that with 10 days remaining before the deadline, Notley's only priority is working with the federal government and Kinder Morgan to work on a deal.
Drawing on those and other public pronouncements by B.C. Greens and New Democrats, one could readily conclude that the B.C. reference case, no less than Alberta Bill 12, was also motivated by politics.