by TLB Editorial Staff
TransCanada has decided to go forward with their claim against the United States and seek $15 Billion in damages for the U.S. rejection of the Keystone XL Pipeline, under authority of the North American Free Trade Agreement. (NAFTA)
Talks between Canada and the U.S. failed, coming to a head last November, when the Obama administration rejected TransCanada’s application to run the pipeline on American soil.
Now comes the “kicker”… this “claim” is not going to be handled in a court room as one would expect where precedents are considered… it was filed with the International Centre for Settlement of Investment disputes. The U.S. has never lost a claim under NAFTA, but that streak may not last because NAFTA arbitration Tribunals are not bound to follow precedents set in past cases. (We did say Tribunal didn’t we.)
Get out your check books America. Oh, and TransCanada is all one word. FYI
TransCanada files $15 billion NAFTA claim for Keystone XL rejection
The Toronto Sun | THE CANADIAN PRESS
CALGARY — TransCanada Corp. is moving forward with its attempt to seek more than $15 billion compensation under the North American Free Trade Agreement following the U.S. government’s rejection of the company’s proposed Keystone XL pipeline.
The Calgary-based company made a formal request for arbitration from the International Centre for Settlement of Investment disputes under the trade deal on Friday, after giving notice of its intention to make the claim back in January.
The request says talks with the U.S. government to resolve the dispute began in April, but the two sides failed to reach an amicable settlement.
Similar to the notice TransCanada filed in January, the company alleges in the compensation request that the government concluded numerous times that the pipeline would not have a significant impact on greenhouse gas emissions.
Still, TransCanada contends the government rejected the pipeline to appear strong on climate change.
It alleges that, as a signatory to NAFTA, the U.S. government failed in its commitment to protect Canadian investors and ensure the company was treated in accordance with international law.
Russ Girling, President and CEO of TransCanada Corp. [pictured here] speaks at a press conference in Calgary, April 29, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS /Mike Ridewood
“At the time Keystone submitted its applications, the express policy of the United States was to expedite the development of energy production and transmission projects including oil pipelines,” the formal request made on Friday states.
“That remains the official policy of the United States even today, despite the denials of Keystone’s applications.”
The document alleges the denial of the pipeline was politically motivated and contravened the precedent that was set by the approval of similar projects.
The White House and the State Department declined to comment on the NAFTA challenge when TransCanada gave notice of its intention to seek compensation in January.
The Obama administration rejected TransCanada’s application to build the Keystone XL pipeline last November.
The nearly 1,900-kilometre line was first proposed in 2008 and its aim was to expand an existing cross-border pipeline to give crude from the Alberta oilsands a more direct route to U.S. Gulf Coast refineries.
During a seven-year debate, the project became a focal point for environmental protesters.
The U.S. has never lost a claim under the North American Free Trade Agreement, but some experts suggest the winning streak may not matter.
Jim Rubin, [pictured here] a partner at law firm Dorsey & Whitney in Washington, D.C., explained earlier this year that unlike a typical court case, NAFTA arbitration tribunals are not bound to follow precedents set in past cases.
TLB recommends the TorontoSun for other news of Canadian interest.
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Posted by RWE