Category Archives: Energy

Weak Land Tenure Sales Persist

Originally posted 6 September 2016

Sales of oil sands leases since 1 April, the start of the Province`s fiscal year have been weak. As the table below illustrates,  except for the June sale, interest has been weak. Land sales remain important as a leading indicator of future energy investment.

Public Sales Results- Oilsands
Date Bonus Hectares $/HA
11-May 61,690.63 5,169.89 11.93
25-May 3,717.12 1,024.00 3.63
22-Jun 11,170,378.05 28,039.00 398.39
06-Jul 150,192.64 1,280.00 117.34
03-Aug 170,923.52 3,264.00 52.37
Totals 11,556,901.96 38,776.89 298.0358136

The charts following are taken from the Department of Energy`s webpage disclosing its Petroleum and Natural Gas Sales Statistics. The historical data provide a helpful visual of the cycles that have occurred in the  oilpatch over the past 36 years.

Alberta Land Sales_8197_image001

A big boost for development took place in the mid to late 1990s as the oilsands royalty regime was modified to deliberately open investment with modified royalty rates which allowed companies to recoup their capital and a rate of return before meaningful returns to the resource owners occurred.

Alberta Land Sales_10090_image001

These charts also show the difficulties faced during the 1980s and early 1990s, the rapid improvements in the 2000s, save the financial crisis of 2007-09, a sharp recovery followed by a steep decline. Oil and gas discoveries (Montney and Duvernay formations) and the impact of new fracking technology have also played an important role in the demand for land to explore and develop.

Alberta Land Sales_11948_image001

The charts reinforce the difficulty faced by the Crown as resource owner becoming “addicted” to the volatile flow of bonuses into the provincial Treasury. Continue reading


Originally posted 12 July 2016

Energy drives politics in Alberta.  Since the early days of the twentieth century when natural gas (1911) and oil (1914) was discovered in the Turner Valley, the politics of Alberta have been influenced by the growing wealth of the oil and gas sector. Three pillars of the Calgary establishment- Sir James Lougheed, R.B. Bennett and W.H. McLaws – created the Calgary Stock Exchange in 1913.  Like so many Alberta financial stories, the stock exchange grew by leaps and bounds until its building was foreclosed upon. While Alberta’s premiers have not come directly from the oil patch, premiers ignore the oil patch at their peril. Continue reading

Harvest Operations trims another 67 staff

Harvest Operations trims another 67 staff

Edmonton Journal, March 15th 2016

Read as Pdf: Harvest Energy Debt







Gibson Energy rejects $2.8B takeover offer11-2-16 EJ