Premiers Pauline Marois and David Alward meet to discuss oil pipelines

The Canadian Press
February 18, 2013

MONTREAL - The premiers of Quebec and New Brunswick are meeting today to discuss oil pipelines.

Quebec's Pauline Marois and New Brunswick's David Alward are in Montreal for their first-ever head-to-head meeting.

A spokeswoman for Marois says the provincial leaders are talking about employment insurance and pipelines.

Their meeting comes at a critical time for Alberta's oilsands industry which is trying to find ways to get its bitumen to international markets.

Canada is awaiting a U.S. decision on the controversial Keystone XL pipeline to send oilsands crude to the Gulf Coast — a project that has been met with strong opposition amid environmental concerns on both sides of the border.

Two other proposals would see Alberta crude stay in Canada and sent east from the oilpatch.

One plan would convert an existing, underused natural gas line to bring oil from Western Canada to Quebec and New Brunswick.

Another proposal would expand capacity on some pipes in the Great Lakes region and reverse the flow of another line between Montreal and southern Ontario.