Alberta hires former journalist to devise fight-back plan against energy foes

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CALGARY — The Alberta government has hired a former journalist to develop a plan to fight back against oil and gas industry foes.

Claudia Cattaneo retired last year as the National Post’s western business columnist based in Calgary.

Energy Minster Sonya Savage says Cattaneo has joined “the fight against lies and myths being spread about Alberta’s energy industry.”

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The United Conservative government’s so-called fight-back strategy includes rebutting critics through a rapid-response war room and investigating funding of environmental charities.

Alberta Energy spokesman Charles Mainville says Cattaneo’s contract is for three months and covers the fight-back strategy as a whole, not just the war room.

Cattaneo is to present her strategic plan to the government this fall.

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“Reporting the truth about the energy industry was at the centre of Claudia’s distinguished career,” Savage said in a release Thursday. “She is uniquely qualified to help us take action. I look forward to receiving her insights and benefiting from her years of experience.”

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