U.S. President Donald Trump says he will grant approval to a $22-billion freight rail project connecting Alaska and Alberta.
The president tweeted Friday that based on the recommendations of Alaska Senator Dan Sullivan and Congressman Don Young, he will be issuing a presidential permit approving the A2A Rail project.
The project would build a new rail line from Fort McMurray, Alta., through the Northwest Territories and Yukon to the Delta Junction in Alaska, where it will connect with existing rail and continue on to ports near Anchorage.
The 2,570-kilometre railway could move cargo like oil, potash and ore, container goods, or even passengers.
Christine Myatt, a spokesperson for Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, said in an emailed statement that the premier welcomed the approval.
“The Government of Alberta is glad to see the approval of the A2A rail project in the United States,” she said.
“We support the development of trade corridors that can unlock new markets for Alberta’s products.”
Kent Fellows, an economist at the University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy, said while oil is likely the main driver for the project, it’s not the only advantage to bringing a rail line up north.