By Nia Williams

(Reuters) – Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Alberta Premier Danielle Smith on Friday said they hoped to find agreement on climate and energy policies that have been a sore point between the federal government and the largest oil-producing province.

Trudeau was visiting Canada’s oil capital Calgary at the start of the city’s annual Stampede event, a 10-day celebration of rodeo and western cowboy culture.

The Liberal Prime Minister and United Conservative Party leader Smith have clashed over federal climate policies including a proposed oil and gas emissions cap and clean electricity regulations.

“We’d like to bring our emissions reduction and energy development plan with the target of carbon neutrality by 2050 in alignment with some of the objectives of the federal government,” Smith said, speaking alongside Trudeau ahead of their bilateral meeting.

She said they would discuss establishing a working group to achieve a net-zero power grid, which Ottawa wants to achieve by 2035, a date Alberta says is unrealistic.

The meeting would also cover the oil and gas emissions cap, and Article 6 of the Paris Climate Accord, which would allow Canadian provinces to obtain credits for reducing emissions abroad by displacing coal with liquefied natural gas exports, Smith said.

Trudeau’s government has pledged to cut Canada’s emissions 40-45% below 2005 by 2030, but will struggle to do so without significant decarbonization in Alberta, home to the oil sands and the bulk of Canada’s fossil fuel industry, and the highest-emitting province.

“There’s lots of things to work through. But I can say there’s been a really positive and constructive working relationship between our ministers and our folks from the very beginning,” Trudeau said.

(Reporting by Nia Williams; Editing by David Gregorio)

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