Justin Trudeau speaks with Rachel Notley following federal pipeline purchase

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The purchase will be financed by Export Development Canada.

"A government that promised to end fossil fuel subsidies and to champion the clean economy should not be spending billions of dollars of taxpayer money to buy out a fossil fuel expansion project", said Weaver, in a statement.

Indigenous leaders, who have been at the forefront of a grassroots campaign against the Trans Mountain project, have vowed that the pipeline "will never be built".

There are parties interested in the pipeline, including Indigenous communities and pension funds, Morneau said, but his officials acknowledged it may be hard to find a buyer amid lingering uncertainty until after the pipeline is actually built.

"It does not change the course that the Government of British Columbia has been on", Horgan said.

Ottawa could also deploy the police and troops to maintain a barrier between protesters and construction workers.

He questioned the decision to buy the project on Tuesday in a social media post.

For its part, the Trudeau government greenlighted Trans Mountain in November 2016 and has long insisted the project is in the national interest because Canada loses $15 billion every year as a result of now limited access to export markets outside the U.S. "Kinder Morgan has gotten rid of its assets, they are free and clear".

The move drew immediate criticism from both sides of the political spectrum, and could hurt Trudeau's popularity in the key British Columbia battleground in a 2019 federal election.

Kinder Morgan has threatened to back out of the expansion project by May 31 if Ottawa, B.C. and Alberta can't come to an agreement.

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"It's a mess out there", said a Calgary industry source not authorized to speak publicly.

"We'll get that pipeline built", Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters as he headed into a cabinet meeting.

"The Trans Mountain expansion project is of vital interest to Canada and to Canadians", Morneau told a news conference in Ottawa.

Bad enough that people like hysterical, anti-pipeline protesters, as Robert Bryce explains in his book Power Hungry, refuse to accept the inescapable reality that, "We use hydrocarbons - coal, oil and natural gas - not because we like them, but because they produce lots of heat energy from small spaces, at prices we can afford in the quantities that we demand".

The transaction on which the federal government and Kinder Morgan agreed upon on Tuesday is expected to close in August 2018. She said she predicts the price tag will make the assets a tough sell for Ottawa should the feds look to unload the project back into the private market. If Canada buys the pipeline, it will also acquire the personnel needed to continue with construction. "I think that's been reinforced by the fact that Kinder Morgan was able to build up through different open seasons to a high level of commitment (from shippers)", he said.

"Canada's purchase of a tar sands pipeline and expansion project eviscerates any claim it has to climate leadership at a key moment - doubling down on the world's dirtiest oil, rather than closing the gap on the country's Paris climate commitments", said Anthony Swift, the Canada program director for the USA -based Natural Resources Defense Council, in a statement.

"It's the kind of epic disaster of the last century I couldn't imagine a modern government doing, but that's exactly what we are doing", May said.

What's ironic is that by obstructing Trans Mountain so effectively, Horgan and other B.C. pipeline opponents will now be among its part-owners.

The sale does not include the Cochin pipeline, crude storage facilities in Edmonton, or the Vancouver Wharves terminal facility, and the company has not yet decided what to do with the proceeds beyond paying down a roughly $100 million debt.