pipeWith the increasing importance of oil sales to the Canadian economy and the Obama administration’s continued blocking of plans to build the Keystone Pipeline, Canada is moving ahead with the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project, a pipeline to expedite the shipping of land-locked oil reserves in Alberta to China.  Calgary-based energy giant Enbridge received the approval of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government June 17 to proceed with the construction of the $7.3 billion Northern Gateway Project connecting Canada’s rich oil sands in Alberta to a British Columbia port, despite the strong objections of aboriginal “first nation” tribes and environmental activists. The Harper government in recent months has become increasingly frustrated with the refusal of the Obama administration to approve TransCanada Corporation’s plan to construct the Keystone XL pipeline. On June 12, Bloomberg reported Canadian Finance Minister Joe Oliver, along with Natural Resources Minister Greg Rickford and Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, traveled to New York to charge in media interviews and at an energy conference that President Obama has “unfairly entangled” the $5.4 billion pipeline project with U.S. politics. The Northern Gateway pipeline, with a capacity of 525,000 barrels per day, will extend 715 miles from the oil sands at Bruderheim, Alberta, to storage tanks on the Pacific Ocean in Kitimat, British Columbia, where it will be shipped to Asian markets. More