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Launching Jim Prentice's 'Triple Crown'
The Chamber was honoured and proud to host the regional launch of the late Honourable Jim Prentice's book Triple Crown in March 2017. In this blog, Policy Director Zoe Addington outlines some of Mr. Prentice’s political accomplishments, along with a brief overview of the book.
On March 15th, the Calgary Chamber hosted Calgary’s business community to celebrate the regional launch of the late Honourable Jim Prentice’s book Triple Crown: Winning Canada’s Energy Future. The book launch, and accompanying panel discussion led by industry experts, took place in front of a sold-out crowd at the National Music Centre – a testament to Jim’s lifelong commitment to improving our nation, province and city.
Jim Prentice was an Albertan. He moved to Grande Cache with his family when he was 13, and put himself through university and law school by working in a coal mine in Crowsnest Pass. Jim always considered Calgary his home. It’s where he raised his family, built his law practice and was elected to office.
In 2004, Jim was elected to the House of Commons representing the riding of Calgary Centre-North, under the newly formed Conservative Party of Canada. Jim held numerous high-profile roles including Minister of Indian and Northern Affairs, Minister of Industry, and Minister of Environment. Throughout each role, he maintained involvement in the government’s energy, climate change and pipeline files.
Jim left federal office in 2010 to work in the private sector. But, in 2014 he re-entered politics, winning the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta and becoming Alberta’s 16th Premier. Following electoral defeat in the next spring election, Jim stepped away from politics and began his work on Triple Crown.
Jim wanted Canadians to be proud of our natural resources, to take advantage of our unique and fortunate circumstances, and step up as a true world leader in the energy field.
Jim believed in the incredible potential of Canada, and knew that if we want, we can compete with any nation for markets, technologies, skilled workers and foreign direct investment. He believed that we will need to be smart and strategic in developing a comprehensive strategy that focuses on our long-term national interests and the advancement of Canada as a global energy player.
“Triple Crown” referred to what Jim saw as Canada’s comparative advantages over the rest of the world in energy. Specifically, our energy security, industrial cost advantage, and environmental advantages.
We have the world’s largest natural resources reserves including fossil fuels, uranium, hydro, wind and solar. We are located next to the world’s largest economy and ally. We have access to multiple coast lines and reach to world markets. We have a safe and stable democracy, reliable infrastructure and world class capital markets and banking sector. We have a highly-educated workforce and top universities.
Put simply, Canada has every natural advantage to be a world energy leader.
Jim also thought more Canadians needed to be aware of the extent to which our high standard of living is tied to our natural resources sectors. The jobs created by the resources sectors of today are high skilled and well paying positions.
Throughout Triple Crown, Jim illustrates his unwavering support for the development of our resources. However, he leaves current policymakers with words of caution.
To win public support for our needed resource and infrastructure development, policymakers must address growing public concerns about climate change and Indigenous reconciliation. In Jim’s view, the development of our energy economy must go hand-in-hand with our environmental commitments, and must ensure that Indigenous communities receive their fair share of the benefits.
While this may seem like no small task, as an optimist, Jim firmly believed that Canada can develop its resource sector in a sustainable and inclusive manner.
The Calgary Chamber would like to thank Jim for his years of public service, and his consistent support for growing prosperity within our resource rich nation.
Zoe Addington is the Director of Policy and Government Relations at the Calgary Chamber.