U.S. President Joe Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau released a “Roadmap for a Renewed U.S.-Canada Partnership” on Tuesday that commits to fight “systemic racism” and COVID-19, but ignores the Keystone XL pipeline.
In a preamble, the two leaders declare: “The Roadmap for a Renewed U.S.-Canada Partnership announced today establishes a blueprint for an ambitious and whole-of-government effort against the COVID-19 pandemic and in support of our mutual prosperity. It creates a partnership on climate change, advances global health security, bolsters cooperation on defense and security, and it reaffirms a shared commitment to diversity, equity, and justice.”
Much of the document is devoted to the coronavirus pandemic, including a commitment to the controversial World Health Organization (WHO). It also commits both countries “to take a coordinated approach based on science and public health criteria when considering measures to ease Canada-U.S. border restrictions in the future.” It also renews a commitment to “strengthen the U.S.-Canada Action Plan on Opioids.”
The document also mentions energy, but in the context of fighting climate change, with a commitment “to enhance cooperation on sustainable and equitable energy transitions, clean energy innovation, connectivity and low-carbon transportation.”
It also pledges to “coordinate cooperation between the United States and Canada to increase ambition aligned to the Paris Agreement and net-zero objectives.” It recognizes “the important economic and energy security benefits of the bilateral energy relationship and its highly integrated infrastructure,” but does not mention Biden’s cancellation of the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline, which would have carried oil from Canada to the U.S., creating tens of thousands of jobs on both sides of the border.
Notably, the document appears to signal a forthcoming reversal of President Donald Trump’s policy of opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to oil and gas development: “The leaders also recognized the ecological importance of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. In particular, they agreed to work together to help safeguard the Porcupine caribou herd calving grounds that are invaluable to the Gwich’in and Inuvialuit peoples’ culture and subsistence.”
The Porcupine herd calves in the 1002 Area of ANWR — the specific area targeted by the industry as having the greatest potential for oil and gas reserves. Democrats have opposed development there for decades, despite technological advances by the energy industry that minimize environmental impact.
The “Roadmap” also commits to fighting “systemic racism” in both countries: “The Prime Minister and the President discussed their shared commitment to addressing systemic racism, unconscious bias, gender-based discrimination, barriers for persons with disabilities, and all other forms of discrimination and exclusion.” It focuses in particular on police reform.
In addition, the Roadmap commits to security coordination, including on relations with China. It includes cooperation against “domestic violent extremism” and “hate groups.” It also indicates that both countries will “work together to expand support for capacity building” in Central American countries that produce migrants to the U.S. and Canada.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.