This article is submitted by Canadian Energy Centre Ltd.
Producers building a competitive advantage with ESG performance
The head of the International Energy Agency says Canada is a preferred global oil and gas supplier and should take steps to ensure it remains so in the decades to come.
IEA executive director Fatih Birol is a big advocate for net zero targets, but he knows that even as the world transforms its energy systems, oil and gas will be around for a long time.
The Paris-based IEA is a world-recognized authority on energy supply, demand and policy.
“Canada has been a cornerstone of global energy markets, a reliable partner, for years,” Birol said.
“We will still need oil and gas for years to come… I prefer that oil is produced by countries… like Canada who want to reduce the emissions of oil and gas.”
World oil consumption has returned near pre-pandemic levels, and natural gas demand surpassed levels pre-COVID last year, according to IEA data. Consumption of both is expected to continue rising even as more renewable energy sources come online.
In Europe, energy customers are feeling the pain of dealing with an unreliable supplier.
Birol said Europe’s natural gas crisis is in part because it depends on Russia for nearly half its natural gas imports. As a result, Russia’s policies “have a huge impact on the European energy mix.”
Right now, Russia has unused capacity to send the equivalent of a full LNG vessel every day to help reduce natural gas prices in Europe, amid a standoff between Moscow and the West over Ukraine, Birol told reporters last week.
“[The] world needs reliable partners,” he said. Canada’s first LNG exports are expected in 2025 and forecast to rise steadily thereafter, the IEA noted in its report.
Canada is the world’s fourth-largest producer of oil and natural gas and home to the third-largest oil reserves, which “creates employment for Canadians and secure and reliable oil and gas for both domestic and global markets,” the IEA said.
Remaining competitive in global oil and gas markets – and ensuring the sector remains a major driver of the Canadian economy beyond 2050 – requires emissions reductions, the IEA said, praising work that has been done already.
Canada is not only stable and reliable, but its LNG supply will also be cleaner than competitors, the IEA said.
The LNG Canada project that is under construction in B.C. is expected to have the lowest carbon emissions intensity of any large LNG facility currently operating in the world, at 60 per cent lower than the global average.
Other proposed LNG projects in Canada plan to use clean, renewable hydroelectricity to power operations, resulting in emissions profiles up to 90 per cent lower than global competitors, the IEA said.
Analysts praised the oil and gas industry’s “strong track record” of reducing emissions intensity, in the oil sands by 32 per cent since 1990 and by 13 per cent for natural gas production since 2010. A further reduction of up to 27 per cent is expected in the oil sands by 2030.
The success is in part because of large investments in clean technology and environmental protection, the IEA said.
Oil and gas companies in Canada together spend an average of $1 billion per year on energy cleantech, in addition to billions in environmental protection.
In 2018, oil and gas companies also invested $3.6 billion in environmental protection initiatives – by far the largest environmental protection spend of any industry in the country, the IEA said.
“Canadian oil and natural gas producers are leveraging their improving environmental, social and governance performance and Canada’s stringent environmental regulations to build a global competitive advantage” as interest in cleaner fuels and environmental sustainability grows.
Police arrest two more people following killing of eight-year-old girl in Alberta
An Edmonton Police Service logo is shown at a press conference in Edmonton, Oct. 2, 2017. Police in Edmonton have charged two more people following the killing of an eight-year-old girl whose remains were found on a First Nation south of the provincial capital in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Police in Edmonton have charged two more people following the killing of an eight-year-old girl whose remains were found on a First Nation south of the provincial capital.
Officers responded on April 24 to a welfare call about the girl at an Edmonton home but were unable to locate her.
Her remains were discovered five days later on the Samson Cree Nation in Maskwacis.
Shayden Lightning, who is 21, and Raighne Stoney, who is 36, have been charged with being an accessory to murder and causing an indignity to a body.
Three others were initially charged in the case.
Police are not releasing the names of two of the accused in order to protect the identities of other children related to the victim, whose identity is under a publication ban.
A 27-year-old woman faces a charge of first-degree murder and a 25-year-old man faces charges of being an accessory to murder and causing an indignity to a body.
Edward Nievera, 67, was charged with being an accessory to murder and causing an indignity to a body.
Edmonton police Staff Sgt. Colin Leathem said in a release Friday that the recent arrests will be the last in the case and that the investigation has concluded.
“We want to thank the RCMP in Maskwacis and Wetaskiwin for their assistance with this investigation,” he said. “Needless to say, this was an exceptionally distressing investigation to work on, and they went above and beyond in helping to facilitate these final arrests and bring this file to conclusion.
“While nothing can change the horror of what occurred, we hope (the arrests) can provide some measure of justice to those who knew and loved this little girl.”
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 22, 2023.
Smith says despite difficulty with Ottawa, Alberta has allies in Trudeau cabinet
Alberta Premier Danielle Smith speaks to business leaders at the Global Business Forum in Banff, Alta., Friday, Sept. 22, 2023. Smith told the conference that despite her concerns with the federal Liberal government there was some cabinet ministers she can work with. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
By Bill Graveland in Banff
Alberta Premier Danielle Smith told a business conference on Friday that despite her concerns with the federal Liberal government, there are some cabinet ministers she can work with.
Smith has been at odds with federal Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault and Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson amid concerns over Ottawa’s climate-change policies and transition plan for a net-zero emissions economy.
Guilbeault intends to publish draft regulations this fall to cap emissions from oil and gas, then force them downward overtime. Ottawa has also set a target to have the electricity grid be net-zero by 2035, but Alberta says it’s unrealistic.
Smith says Alberta won’t implement the emissions cap, nor will it follow the 2035 target.
The premier told delegates at the Global Business Forum in Banff, Alta., that Wilkinson needs to answer for comments he made earlier this week at the World Petroleum Congress in Calgary.
Wilkinson’s call for the industry to work aggressively to get to net-zero was basically telling them to “pack it up, because the oil and gas industry is winding down,” said Smith.
“You could just feel the energy leave the room and you could just feel the investment dollars leave the room.”
Smith said energy producing provinces such as Alberta, Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador, can’t trust the Trudeau government to look out for their interests at international conferences.
“After hearing how the natural resources minister talks about our industry, after hearing how the federal environment minister talks about our industry, we can’t afford to let them carry our message,” Smith said.
“We can’t afford not to be there.”
Smith said she has been in discussions with Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe and intends to talk to Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Andrew Furey about joint presentations at conferences in the future.
Despite her disappointment with Wilkinson and Guilbeault, Smith said it’s not all bad.
Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland among the top allies, she said.
“Let’s give her credit for shepherding through all of the constant need to give more debt financing to Trans Mountain pipeline to get that to the finish line. That has not been easy,” Smith said.
She also praised Innovation Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne, Public Safety Minister Dominic LeBlanc, Labour Minister Seamus O’Regan and Employment Minister Randy Boissonnault.
“I would say it’s not uniformly negative in the Liberal caucus. But for some reason they’re allowing Stephen Guilbeault to be a maverick and a renegade and quite offensive to those of who are trying to be reasonable and adult about this,” Smith said.
Smith said it’s time for the federal government to back away from setting “aggressive targets” in dealing with the provinces.
“Aggressive targets are not helpful. They’re not helpful to us. They’re not helpful to investors.”
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 22, 2023.
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