(Okotoks, AB) May 12, 2023 — Today, the UCP are calling on NDP Leader Rachel Notley to condemn comments and actions from NDP candidates that directly attack and smear Alberta’s world-class energy sector, and the thousands of Albertans who make their living in it.
The NDP is running several candidates who have made extreme, anti-energy comments:
- On Thursday, it was revealed that Livingstone-Macleod NDP candidate Kevin Van Tighem compared Alberta’s oil and gas industry to slavery, and the people who work in it to slaves. He also said, “Oil sucks, and we’re the suckers,” called Albertans, “entitled, grabby, resource exploiters,” and celebrated the cancellation of the Northern Gateway pipeline.
- Calgary-Elbow NDP candidate Samir Kayande said, “Hydrocarbon must go away. There’s no alternative.”
- Edmonton-Highlands-Norwood NDP candidate Janis Irwin said, “there is *absolutely* room for the perspectives of groups like Extinction Rebellion in our classrooms.” (Extinction Rebellion has infamously blockaded critical infrastructure in Canada and internationally in their efforts to kill the oil and gas industry, including taking credit for the blocking the Walterdale Bridge in Edmonton and blocking the Iron Workers Memorial bridge and Massey Tunnel in Vancouver.)
- Lethbridge-West NDP candidate Shannon Phillips wrote the forward to a radical activism guide with Greenpeace activist Mike Hudema titled, “An Action a Day Keeps Global Capitalism Away.”
- Edmonton-North West NDP candidate David Eggen chanted “no new approvals” on the steps of the Alberta legislature building.
- Calgary-Bow NDP candidate Druh Farrell echoed Rachel Notley’s call for a “just transition” away from oil and gas, saying, “While [Canadians] obsess about pipelines and shrinking employment in coal, oil and gas, they and their leaders have been ignoring a sector that is outgrowing the rest of the economy, attracting billions in investment and creating more jobs than fossil fuel or mining.”
Highwood UCP candidate RJ Sigurdson said all Albertans should be concerned with these comments, particularly the ones from Van Tighem.
“Rachel Notley’s ‘star’ hand-picked candidate clearly has nothing but disdain for Albertans and Alberta’s energy sector. These comments are insulting and highlight how out-of-touch the NDP is with the lives of everyday Alberta families,” Sigurdson said.
Innisfail-Sylvan Lake UCP candidate Devin Dreeshen said Albertans cannot trust the NDP to manage the largest industry in the province.
“The NDP still hates our energy industry, even though it supports so many critical services Albertans rely on and thousands of livelihoods. It’s beyond concerning that the NDP clearly harbours so much contempt for this industry and the people who work in it,” Dreeshen said.
Chestermere-Strathmore UCP candidate Chantelle de Jonge said Albertans should not vote for the NDP, at a time when Alberta, Canada and the world need reliable energy from an ethical producer.
“Alberta’s energy industry has the highest environmental and human rights standards in the world. The fact the NDP don’t understand that shows they’re unfit to govern Alberta, and Albertans should not trust them,” de Jonge said.