The Liberal position on Maritime Link contains an interesting admission. Energy critic Andrew Younger said last week on CBC that the power to flow through Maritime Link may not be needed by Nova Scotia.
The Liberal vision of Nova Scotia is one that doesn’t need more power capacity – of any kind – because there won’t be any extra economic activity to use it. The Liberals are inherently pessimistic about the prospects for sustained economic growth in Nova Scotia. Only a no-growth economy can say that it doesn’t need new energy – energy exports or industrial expansion simply aren’t on the Liberal agenda.
Consider this: the only government project that Stephen McNeil has supported in the last 4 years is the one that didn’t work out – they voted with the Tories and the NDP to try to save the Bowater mill. All the other successful projects creating jobs across the province the Liberals would have said no to. Those companies would have gone elsewhere and those workers would have moved west. But hey, at least the province would need less energy.
When last in government, the Liberals presided over 10 years of the worst economic performance by Nova Scotia in recent memory. “We may not need the energy” may turn out to be the McNeil Liberals’ most honest statement yet on his party’s plans for an economy that now looks to be emerging from the worst economic crisis since 1929.
Keith MacDonald of the Cape Breton Partnership sees promise in the new green power:
This project is certainly deemed to have a significant impact on the economy and the Partnership will continue to work with Cape Breton companies and community leaders to maximize the economic impacts of the Maritime Link.
Port Hawkesbury Mayor Bill Joe MacLean:
This project will help ensure electricity prices are more stable for many years to come. Importing clean hydroelectricity from Newfoundland and Labrador also helps create regional energy security.
Valerie Payn, Halifax Chamber of Commerce:
The Maritime Link project is an important step towards growing our green energy sector, both for the present and future generations… The Chamber believe this mega project, coined a “game changer” by many, has the potential to harness opportunities to make our province more competitive.