'It stops now': Kenney targets foreign funding of anti-Alberta energy campaigns
Published Thursday, July 4, 2019 2:37PM MDT
Last Updated Thursday, July 4, 2019 8:50PM MDT
The Alberta government announced a public inquiry into the foreign funding of anti-Alberta energy campaigns Thursday.
Premier Jason Kenney says foreign funded special interest groups have secretly spent millions of dollars on campaigns against energy producers and economic development in Alberta.
“We want to understand what exactly lies behind this campaign to defame and land lock Canadian energy,” Premier Kenney said. “We want to know why, who and how much.
“Alberta will no longer allow hostile interest groups to dictate our economic destiny as one of the most ethical major producers of energy in the world,” Kenney continued.
The premier singled out a number of groups, including the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the Tides Foundation and the David Suzuki Foundation.
Jay Ritchlin, the David Suzuki Foundation director general in western Canada, denied the accusations: "That's certainly not a goal of the David Suzuki Foundation in any way, shape or form."
The inquiry has been given a total budget of $2.5 million. Steve Allan, a forensic and restructuring accountant, was appointed commissioner of the inquiry.
Allan will conduct an information review – including interviewing witnesses and additional research – followed by a public hearing. He will submit a final report to government by July 2, 2020.
Allan has more than 40 years of experience as an accountant. He is a fellow of the Chartered Professional Accountants of Alberta and board chair for Calgary Economic Development.