TransMountain pipeline landowners should be very afraid.
Most of the land through which the TransMountain pipeline runs was assembled by expropriation or the threat of expropriation.
TransMountain is an aging leaking pipeline that desperately needs replacement. That is what the TransMountain Expansion project (TMX) is supposed to be all about.
But now it is owned by Ottawa. So about 2200 pipeline landowners now have a federal Crown corporation as a tenant on their land. With the terms and conditions of the "lease" -- Right of Way -- far from ideal.
Despite the change of ownership made "necessary" because Ottawa has effectively suspended the property rights of pipeline companies in Canada, it appears TMX still can't get done.
Which has prompted an Alberta senator to call for the expropriation of the entire corridor.
Ottawa would now own not only the TransMountain pipeline, but all the land it runs through.
Property rights are already largely ignored in Canada. But the TransMountain corridor would turn landowners into squatters on Crown land.
And who could they turn to for redress? Ottawa is set to unveil its replacement for the National Energy Board (NEB) -- the Canadian Energy Regulator.
So now landowners will be like fans in the stands where Ottawa owns the team, the stadium and the umpire.
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