Is the Sun Setting on Alberta’s Conventional Oil and Gas Producers?


March 5, 2020 :: Regan Boychuk
Moderated by Dylan Purcell

Alberta’s conventional oil and gas liabilities have been growing for decades with reported estimates ranging from $58 to $130 billion involving 450,000 oil and gas wells, 400,000 Km of pipelines, 1.4 trillion litres of fluid waste, Only $1.5 billion is held in securities to protect Albertan taxpayers from the risk of being left on the hook for costs. Oil sands liabilities are estimated at another (largely unsecured) $130 billion.

If the issue of backlogged and unsecured oil and gas liabilities is allowed to stay quiet, the problem will simply continue to grow, with no true transparency around its scale and scope. Long-term solutions to this problem will need to be both collaborative and practical. However, in order to find such solutions, all stakeholders must have access to accurate information about the true costs to clean up all active and inactive oil and gas infrastructure in Alberta.

It was recently revealed Alberta’s oil and gas companies now owe $178 million in unpaid rent and property taxes to farmers and municipalities, not all of which can be explained by a few dozen bankrupt companies. Oil and gas companies that continue operating are also choosing not to pay their rent and taxes.

The speaker will argue that Alberta can’t or won’t charge companies market competitive royalties for its oil and gas and can’t or won’t make anyone clean up their mess without them going bankrupt, and the fact the oil patch cannot (or simply refuses to) pay its rent and taxes, all point towards an unfortunate reality: the sun is setting on Alberta’s storied conventional oil and gas industry.

Speaker: Regan Boychuk

Regan Boychuk is a leading experts on the problem of reclaiming aging oil and gas infrastructure in Alberta. His analysis is informed by years of original research into royalties and liabilities, as well as decades of on-the-ground experience in the oil and gas industry.

Born and raised in Grande Prairie, Regan Boychuk is an independent researcher now based in Calgary. He was Research Manager with the University of Alberta’s Parkland Institute and served on the oil sands expert group advising the provincial government’s 2015-16 Royalty Review Panel.

Moderator: Dylan Purcell

Date: Thursday, March 5, 2020
Time: Doors open 11:30 am, presentation 12 noon, buffet lunch 12:30 pm, Q&A 1 – 1:30 pm
Location: Royal Canadian Legion (please enter at north door) 324 Mayor Magrath Dr. S. Lethbridge
Cost: $14 buffet lunch with dessert/coffee/tea/juice or $2 coffee/tea/juice. RSVP not required


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