Canadian Energy CANADA’S OIL AND GAS SECTOR MAINTAINS LEAD IN ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION SPENDING. by James Snell
“The Canadian energy space, unfortunately, gets a bad rap in terms of its media narrative,”
SPOTLIGHT ON BUSINESS MAGAZINE • VOL 23 ISSUE 3 Environmental protection investments tracked by Sta - tistics Canada must be used to mitigate or eliminate pollution or other environmental problems, or to restore the environment from a compromised state. This in - cludes salaries and services as well as equipment and machinery capital costs. “The Canadian energy space unfortunately gets a bad rap in terms of its media narrative,” said Jared Dziuba, an oil and gas market specialist with BMO Capital Mar - kets. “What’s missed, often,is the pace at which the industry is improving the metrics of emis - sions, water, and land use.” pdated numbers from Statistics Canada show the oil and gas sector is spening more on envi ronmental protection than any other Canadian industry. Canadian oil and gas producers spent $2.75 billion in 2020 compared to $2.11 billion for metals manufactur - ing, $1 billion for mining and quarrying, and $663 mil - lion for electrical power generation and transmission. A total of 20 industries were surveyed.
Sands Innovation Alliance. Thanks in part to new technology, Alberta’s oil and gas producers reduced total methane emissions by 44 percent between 2014 and 2021, according to the AER. The sector is now expected to exceed the target to reduce methane emissions by 45 percent by 2025. In the oil sands, spending to reduce emissions is scheduled to ramp up in the coming years.
Since 2009, oil sands emissions per barrel have dropped by about 20 per cent, according to S&P Glob - al. Fresh water use intensity across the oil and gas sec - tor has decreased by 14 percent since 2017,says a re - port by the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) published in 2022. Of the water used for energy development in Alberta, 82 percent is recycled. Driving the progress is oil sands mining, which uses around 82 percent of the industry’s fresh water. In 2021, mining companies used less fresh water than in the previous five years. “They’ve got many new treatment methods that use less river water and more recycled water,” said John Brogly, director of water and tailings with Canada’s Oil
Canada’s energy sector is a global leader in the devel - opment of new environmental technologies, said Dziu - ba, noting the top five oil sands producers invested, on average, around $1.1 billion per year on research and development over the last decade. “On a per barrel basis, that’s significantly higher than competitors on a global scale,” he said. “The Canadian space is much more tightly regulated than other competing regions.” Investors are helping drive new environmental perfor - mance targets around emissions intensity, water and use, said Dziuba.
“Canada has been a leader in the first generation of CCS,”
VOL 23 ISSUE 3 • SPOTLIGHT ON BUSINESS MAGAZINE
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