OTTAWA — Canada’s Building Trades Unions (CBTU) has issued a statement saying the organization is disappointed with the announcement that Teck Resources Ltd. has decided to withdraw its application to build the Frontier Project in Alberta.
Teck’s Frontier Project would have created thousands of high-paying construction jobs, the statement noted. Approximately 7,000 full-time jobs would have been open to Canadian workers over the course of its construction, with 2,500 jobs retained during operations.
For young people starting a career in the trades, the Frontier Project would have represented a good opportunity for developing much-needed skills in the industry, the CBTU stated.
“Local communities across Alberta, including First Nations and Metis communities, would have seen significant new economic opportunities become available with the employment of local people from their communities,” said CBTU executive board member Lionel Railton in the statement.
“This would have had a huge, positive impact on Alberta at a time when the province has been struggling to find employment for its people and struggling to return to the economic prosperity it had prior to the start of its economic recession six years ago.”
The statement noted the Frontier Project had undergone extensive review by federal and provincial regulators, stakeholders and Indigenous communities.
The company had reached agreements with all 14 Indigenous communities in the project area, which set out a framework for cooperation in areas such as environmental stewardship and economic opportunities.
Additionally, the company had reiterated its commitment towards environmental responsibility, with the aim to make the Frontier Project the nation’s lowest greenhouse gas intense oil sands operation by utilizing new technologies and best practices, the CBTU noted.
“The federal government must show its support for our natural resources sector clearly and decisively. We believe the federal government should and must continue to have a role in approving major projects, such as this one, and must show companies and workers in the natural resources sector that it supports them,” said the CBTU release.
“This is a very sad day for Canada.”