How Teck Resources Benefits From Being the B.C. Liberal’s Largest Donor
wcel.org | Published Thursday, April 6, 2017
By Andrew Gage
Revelations about the amount of corporate money coming to the BC Liberals – not to mention RCMP investigations – have many people asking: what are these companies getting in return? It’s a good question. After all, corporations are not supposed to spend their shareholders’ money without a reasonable expectation of a return. The different political parties are increasingly aware that voters have these questions.*
At a general level, it does seem that BC Liberal donors have done well in terms of government contracts.
And there have been specific calls to set aside the approval of the Woodfibre LNG project in Squamish (based on donations from Woodfibre that seem to have been illegally funneled through individuals), to re-examine logging in endangered caribou habitat by BC Liberal donor, Canfor, and calls on the BC Liberals to return funds received from KinderMorgan and its allies (given the controversial decision to approve its pipeline and tankers project).
Corporate donations and the culture of (environmental) law enforcement
But corporate benefits received in return for donations do not have to be about a particular government approval or a contract. Companies can also believe that their donations will result not in a particular decision, but in a more favourable regulatory culture – one that doesn’t ask hard questions or impose harsh consequences.