Archive | Oil and Gas Sector-Politics and Image

OPINION:Indigenous-Canadians are upset with the Liberal government’s Bill C-69, too – by Joseph Quesnel (Financial Post – March 2, 2019)

Indigenous communities are still upset with the government’s Bill C-69, legislation intended to speed up and streamline the large project assessment process in Canada but which may end up frustrating the process further.

A few weeks ago, a convoy of more than 30 trucks met in northern Alberta to support pipelines and oppose Bill C-69. The event was billed by CBC News as the first Indigenous-led rally in support of energy resources. The event was organized by the Region One Aboriginal Business Association (ROABA), a group that promotes the interests of Indigenous-owned businesses in northern Alberta.

The Senate energy committee studying the bill has decided to take the bill on the road for more public consultations. That is likely the best decision for First Nations and indeed all Canadians, as these major projects — especially critical oil pipelines to get Alberta oil to foreign markets — are in the national interests of Canada. Continue Reading →

Sorry Liberals – the ‘jobs’ excuse for the SNC-Lavalin debacle won’t fly – by Rex Murphy (National Post – March 16, 2019)

Whoever is masterminding the Liberal response to this scandal appears to be confusing the anchor with the life jacket

Whoever is masterminding the Liberal response to the SNC-Lavalin scandal is confusing the anchor and the life jacket. To be clear, the life jacket is the one that keeps you afloat … the anchor is the heavy thing.

The justice committee Liberals — who are obviously not mariners — met Wednesday only to shut the committee down for a week, to stall on allowing Jody Wilson-Raybould back to complete her testimony, giving every indication possible that they weren’t really very interested in hearing from her at all anymore.

There is nothing opposition MPs could have done more effectively to juice up an already highly-charged saga than the five Liberals’ blatant and televised amputation of what a committee named justice ought to be doing. Continue Reading →

Talk about ‘collusion’: How foreign-backed anti-oil activists infiltrated Canada’s government – by Gwyn Morgan (Financial Post – March 14, 2019)

Piece by meticulously researched piece, Vivian Krause has spent almost 10 years exposing this story

Canadians watching Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election might be tempted to find comfort in their certainty that such foreign interference could never happen here.

Except it already has. And while the Russian government at least denies interfering in American political affairs, the perpetrators who meddled in Canadian elections have publicly trumpeted their success in devising and executing their plan aimed at helping elect who they wanted.

This story has all the elements of a fiction novel. Unfortunately it’s real. Piece by meticulously researched piece, B.C.-based independent researcher Vivian Krause spent almost 10 years exposing the story. Every detail has been corroborated, including with American and Canadian tax records, together with documents and statements from the perpetrators themselves. Continue Reading →

‘A never-ending cycle unless you break it’: Snotty Nose Rez Kids push against racism – by David Friend (Canadian Press/City News – March 12, 2019)

TORONTO — Snotty Nose Rez Kids rappers Darren Metz and Quinton Nyce weren’t equipped as children to analyze the vicious Indigenous stereotypes and racist caricatures flashing on their TV screens.

Like many kids of the late 1990s, they were raised on a steady diet of Disney classics while living in Kitamaat Village on Haisla Nation in northwest B.C. Some of those animated movies sent clear negative messages about their identities that echoed throughout the community.

“Peter Pan” presented Native Americans as “savages” who spoke in monosyllables, while “Pocahontas” romanticized colonialism by framing it against a love story. Metz and Nyce remember how elders rarely questioned the ways Hollywood movies taught the Indigenous youth to devalue themselves. Continue Reading →

Keystone XL pipeline delays may cost contractors $2.5 billion: TransCanada – by Geoffrey Morgan (Financial Post – March 13, 2019)

CALGARY — TransCanada Corp. has asked the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to lift an injunction on its Keystone XL pipeline by the end of this week, as it approaches an internal deadline to begin construction this year on the US$8-billion project.

Without relief from the injunction, TransCanada could delay construction by one year on the 830,000-barrels-per-day pipeline from Alberta to Nebraska. The project would expand the ability of Canadian oil companies to reach the U.S. Gulf Coast refining market through the company’s existing Keystone system.

In a March 11 filing, the U.S. State Department and Calgary-based pipeline giant requested a stay of an injunction granted late last year by a federal judge in Montana, which forced the company to cease all preparatory work on the oil pipeline until the State Department finished a supplemental review of the project. Continue Reading →

OPINION: The flawed Bill C-69 will worsen, rather than solve, the crisis in Canada’s resources sector – by Grant Bishop (Globe and Mail – February 25, 2019)

Grant Bishop is an associate director, research, at the C.D. Howe Institute.

My flight back west was delayed at Toronto’s Pearson Airport, and I got talking to a Calgary banker, who was also homeward bound after a circuit around Bay Street. “Capital is thin right now,” she said. “Upstream investment for Canadian oil and gas is just a no-go: It’s not a matter of risk premium. No one knows how to price the politics.”

Investment in Canada’s resource sector fell dramatically in the past four years and the outlook for new projects remains depressed. Ottawa has proposed an overhaul under Bill C-69 of the federal environmental assessment for major capital projects, and our Senate is now scrutinizing the legislation.

In a report published on Thursday by the C.D. Howe Institute, Alberta’s former deputy minister of energy Grant Sprague and I aimed to add data and detail to this policy discussion. We believe that, in its present form, Bill C-69 risks amplifying political risk and further impairing confidence in Canada’s resource sectors. Continue Reading →

‘Crisis of our own making’: Regulatory logjam has cost $100B in cancelled resource projects – by Geoffrey Morgan (Financial Post – February 22, 2019)

More to be expected without major amendments to Bill C-69: C.D. Howe

CALGARY – A new report shows $100 billion in planned spending on resource projects in Canada has evaporated, and a further drop should be expected without substantial amendments to the Liberal government’s planned regulatory overhaul in Bill C-69.

As Senate hearings into the controversial bill continued Thursday, the C.D. Howe Institute released a report detailing how recent declines in planned energy, mining and forestry investment in Canada totalling $100 billion is equivalent to erasing 4.5 per cent from Canada’s gross domestic product.

TransCanada Corp.’s $15-billion Energy East pipeline, CNOOC Ltd.’s Aurora LNG and Petronas Bhd’s $36-billion Pacific NorthWest LNG project are among the major resource projects that have been cancelled in recent years after long and uncertain regulatory processes, contributing to the $100-billion figure. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Flawed Bill C-69 Risks Worsening Plunge in Resource-Sector Investment: C.D. Howe Institute

Feb. 21, 2019 – Bill C-69 threatens to further depress investment in the natural resources sector and delay projects by unnecessarily exposing them to political risk, says a new report from the C.D. Howe Institute.

The planned investment value of major resource sector projects plunged $100 billion between 2017 and 2018, note Grant Bishop and Grant Sprague, authors of “A Crisis of Our Own Making: Prospects for Major Natural Resource Projects in Canada.” This plunge is equivalent to 4.5 percent of Canada’s gross domestic product.

With investment in Canada’s resources sector already depressed, the federal government’s proposed Bill C-69 could further discourage investments by congesting the assessment process with wider public policy concerns and increasing political uncertainty. Proponents of major projects may perceive additional political risks because of a lower threshold to trigger political decision-making and a highly subjective standard for project approval. Continue Reading →

‘Long overdue’: Devon Energy late to the party in selling off oilsands assets – by Geoffrey Morgan (Financial Post – February 21, 2019)

CALGARY — American oil giant Devon Energy Corp. is the latest international producer to put its oilsands assets up for sale, but analysts think Canadian producers will be cautious about spending billions to buy the properties.

Oklahoma City-based Devon announced Tuesday that “the timing is now appropriate” to divest from its Canadian assets including the 100,000-barrels-per-day Jackfish thermal oilsands plant and other heavy oil properties, which account for 24 per cent of the company’s total production.

If it is able to find a buyer for the assets, Devon will join a long list of foreign firms that have reduced their exposure to Canadian heavy oil, including Royal Dutch Shell Plc, ConocoPhillips Co., Murphy Oil Corp., Marathon Oil Corp., Statoil SA and Total SA. Continue Reading →

‘We’re squandering an opportunity’: CEOs of RBC and Enbridge urge action on energy strategy – by Geoff Zochodne (Financial Post – February 21, 2019)

The chief executives of Canada’s biggest bank and its largest pipeline company warned Wednesday that the country is at risk of squandering a huge advantage if it does not come together to tap the potential of the energy industry.

Royal Bank of Canada CEO Dave McKay added that business leaders also need to be stronger advocates for the sector to give governments the cover needed to forge ahead with changes.

“They need the support of the business community to take the political risk to move forward with this agenda,” McKay said during a lunchtime interview with Enbridge Inc. CEO Al Monaco. Continue Reading →

Hate mail and vitriol: Divisions run deep over bill that could reshape our natural resources economy – by Gabriel Friedman and Geoffrey Morgan (Financial Post – February 15, 2019)

Tempers flare over Bill C-69, the Liberals’ environmental review overhaul that has pit miners against the oilpatch

TORONTO/CALGARY – It’s a Friday afternoon in January and Pierre Gratton, president of the Mining Association of Canada, is tired of responding to angry emails from people he doesn’t know.

For the second time in as many months, his inbox and phone line were flooded with messages — some polite, some he calls “hate mail” — from people opposed to Bill C-69, the planned overhaul of the federal environmental review process.

Few pieces of legislation stir up raw emotion within the resources sector as much as those connected to environmental reviews, which require companies to study the impacts of their projects, sometimes at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars and sometimes opening them up to legal challenges that can create years-long delays. Continue Reading →

The battle over Bill C-69: Oil industry, government at odds as project review bill heads to Senate hearing – by Shawn McCarthy (Globe and Mail – February 2, 2019)

Hal Kvisle is “mad as hell.” The seasoned oil-industry executive has taken a good look through Bill C-69, the pending legislation that overhauls the review process for major resource projects, and he doesn’t like what he sees.

A former chief executive of TransCanada Corp., Mr. Kvisle spent a decade shepherding projects such as the Mackenzie Valley Gas pipeline and the original Keystone pipeline through Ottawa’s byzantine regulatory process, with mixed results. Now chairman of the board of ARC Resources Ltd. and a director for oil sands giant Cenovus Energy Inc., he worries burdensome federal policies are killing growth prospects in the Western Canadian oil industry and warns the new legislation will only compound the problem.

The Liberal legislation “takes a horrifically bad situation and makes it worse,” Mr. Kvisle says. “They’ve created something that we in industry – having been through what we have – we see no end in sight to that [review] process.” No pipeline company will pursue a project under those circumstances, he says. Continue Reading →

On Bill C-69, Alberta forced to seek salvation in the Senate – by Don Braid (Calgary Herald – February 6, 2019)

It’s frightening to realize that beginning Wednesday, Alberta’s economic future lies in the hands of — gulp! — the Senate of Canada. Senate hearings start into the Liberal government’s Bill C-69, which threatens the prospect of any major pipeline construction in Canada, ever again.

During an in camera session Tuesday, the Senate’s committee on energy, the environment and natural resources agreed to hold public hearings in every region of Canada.

“I see this as very positive,” says Alberta Sen. Doug Black, who has long pushed for travelling hearings. He expects the committee to hear bitter opposition to C-69 from coast to coast to coast. Continue Reading →

Likely construction delays will mean Ottawa overpaid for Trans Mountain, PBO says – by Bill Curry (Globe and Mail – February 1, 2019)

Parliament’s spending watchdog Yves Giroux warned there is a high risk that delays and cost overruns will mean the Liberal government overpaid when it spent $4.4-billion last year to purchase the Trans Mountain pipeline, its related expansion project and other assets.

In a report released Thursday, the Parliamentary Budget Officer estimates the value of the Trans Mountain pipeline and the expansion project at between $3.6-billion and $4.6-billion. The PBO’s figure does not include related assets such as pipeline terminals that were included as part of Ottawa’s transaction with Kinder Morgan Inc.

“If it was a car, we’d say they paid sticker price. They didn’t negotiate very much,” Mr. Giroux said. “Should there be a delay in construction costs or an increase in construction costs, then it’s quite clear to us that the government will have overpaid.” Mr. Giroux said those scenarios appear likely. Continue Reading →

Andrew Scheer targets carbon tax, muses on northern development at mining conference – by Nelson Bennett (Business in Vancouver/Alaska Highway News – January 31 2019)

A Conservative government would implement policies that would make resources industries in Canada very happy, and drive environmentalists apoplectic.

Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer vowed Thursday, January 31 that a Conservative government would immediately scrap a national carbon tax. It would also repeal Bill C-69, which replaces the Environmental Assessment Act, open Canada’s north to resource extraction and use carrots, not sticks, in the Conservatives’ yet-to-be-revealed climate change strategy.

Scheer also told Business in Vancouver that the Conservatives are also looking at the question of foreign funding of environmental group in Canada, and hinted they might be excluded from participating in environmental reviews. Continue Reading →