Inquiry into oil and gas foes to deliver report next year: Kenney

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney says an inquiry into who is funding environmental opposition to the province’s oil and gas sector will be completed some time next year.

His United Conservative government contends foreign interests have been working to undermine the industry for years.

The inquiry, headed by forensic accountant Steve Allan, was initially expected to report its findings this summer and its deadline was most recently extended to Oct. 30.

Read more: Kenney government boosts budget for public inquiry looking at how anti-oil groups are funded, extends report’s deadline

A lawsuit filed by environmental law firm Ecojustice argues the inquiry is politically motivated, biased and outside provincial jurisdiction

Kenney also says his government would be introducing legislation next year to make it illegal for foreign interests to fund political action committees.

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Read more: Environmental law group seeks to stop Alberta’s inquiry into who funds oil critics

Click to play video 'Researcher argues anti-Alberta oil campaign not about environment' Researcher argues anti-Alberta oil campaign not about environment

Researcher argues anti-Alberta oil campaign not about environment

He says the Canadian Energy Centre, a war room meant to counter what the UCP government considers misinformation about the oil and gas industry, will ramp up again after the COVID-19 pandemic put it on hiatus.

Kenney made his remarks Saturday during a livestreamed question-and-answer session capping off the party’s convention, which was held virtually over two weekends due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier in the day, federal Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole told party members that Alberta has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic better than the federal government.

© 2020 The Canadian Press

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