On January 20, 2021, Joe Biden was inaugurated as the 46th president of the United States. Against a backdrop of COVID-19, the U.S. rejoining of the Paris Agreement and a shifting global energy landscape, U.S. energy policies and economics are expected to have significant impact on Canadian energy development over the coming years. While much attention has been focused on the cancellation of Keystone XL and a ban on hydraulic fracturing on federal lands in the U.S., what can be ascertained from the first 60 days of the Biden presidency? On Thursday March 25, 2021 PSAC was joined by distinguished guests Rachel McCormick, Consul General of Canada to the states of Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas; and James Rajotte, Alberta’s Senior Representative to the United States for a fireside chat to consider what the new Biden Administration’s energy plans mean for the oil and gas industry, for the U.S.-Canada energy relationship and for North American energy security, and how these plans will meet climate, environmental, energy and economic goals for both countries.
PSAC hosted another webinar in its ongoing PSAC-U Speaker Series, this one to explore how companies in the energy sector can leverage their investments in R&D and innovation through the strategic use of intellectual property (IP) to achieve growth in Canada and abroad. The session featured speakers from the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED), law firm Smart & Biggar LLP, and BDC Capital. ISED provided an update on government programs and support available under Canada’s National IP Strategy, while Smart & Biggar reviewed the patent landscape in Canada, the legal risks involved in not protecting or respecting IP rights, and the commercial benefits that come from having a well-managed IP portfolio and roadmap. BDC Capital introduced a new unique IP-backed funding program available exclusively to globally oriented IP-rich companies.
PSAC hosted a virtual Members Only information session in conjunction with the Orphan Well Association who launched a new pilot project for pre-qualification for service rigs and downhole tools. Over the past several months, the Orphan Well Association had been working with industry partners and advisors on best practices for a safe, efficient and competitive supply chain. Starting this year, the OWA will be piloting a new process of pre-qualifying subcontractors for two key supply categories: Service Rigs and Downhole Tools. The pilot will focus on a transparent, fair and competitive process open to all qualified Subcontractors with the goal of integrating those companies into our preferred supply chain. Following the presentations, there was a lively Q&A session where members were able to ask detailed questions and gain clarification on certain aspects of the pilot.
PSAC hosted an information webinar with Ryan McFarland, Executive Director, Employment Standards Program Delivery, Safe, Fair and Healthy Workplaces, Alberta Labour and Immigration, who reviewed recent changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code, with a focus on how these changes impact the oil and gas services sector. Changes reviewed included flexibility to rules for hours of work averaging agreements, clarifying that employees continue to accumulate vacation time while on a job-protected leave, clarifying rules for rest periods and flexibility in scheduling breaks, creating simpler and more flexible rules for general holiday pay average daily wage calculations, and much more.
As part of our PSAC-U Speaker Series, PSAC members were invited to hear from SimplexLegal on issues related to Working-from-Home policies. Since March 2020, almost all Canadian oilfield services companies have implemented some form of work-from-home arrangements with their teams, and it is expected that such arrangements will be extended for the foreseeable future. Many companies are now considering more holistic and semi-permanent measures to maintain or increase employee effectiveness and job satisfaction as well as to protect themselves from future potential liabilities. Key topics of the presentation included an overview of of recent and upcoming developments related to working from home for Canadian OFS employers and employees, legal and cultural considerations and adaptations for employers, practical how-to’s for companies designing their own work-from-home policies, issues surrounding employees’ right to privacy, confidentiality, existing codes of conduct and their applicability to work-from-home setups, the use of employer- and employee-owned technology when working from home, including cost-benefit and security implications, and best practices regarding video conferencing and collaboration software.
On Thursday October 29, 2020 PSAC held its annual Oilfield Services Forecast & Industry Outlook Forum, featuring presentations by PSAC, CAPP, BMO and Wood MacKenzie, moderated by Bemal Mehta, JWN Energy. See accompanying Media Release.
As part of our PSAC-U Speaker Series, PSAC members were invited to hear from Cito Energy Group, a firm providing a unique combination of legal, commercial, and technical services with experience working in over 100 countries. With activity levels in Canada at lows not seen in decades, now may be the time to seek new opportunities abroad, to investigate the best opportunities, develop strategy, and plan. PSAC was also pleased to include representatives from Canada’s Trade Commissioner Service. Topics covered included: Going International – Key Risks, Risk Mitigation and Risk Tolerance, Negotiating in Strange Jurisdictions, and Trade Commissioner Service – services for business.
The Petroleum Services Association of Canada, as part of our PSAC-U Speaker Series, presented an information webinar to assist members in gaining an understanding of the importance and magnitude of Alberta’s carbon market, which has created over $1 billion worth of carbon credits since 2007, along with the latest funding opportunities for Canadian OFS companies, including the recently-announced $25 million Methane Technology Implementation Program (MTIP) program. Presentations by Alastair Handley and Brent Thumlert (Radicle), Jackson Hegland (MELA), and Agi Pawlak (Carbon Connect International) covered an overview of how Alberta’s carbon market functions and how credits can be generated from methane emission reductions at upstream oil and gas facilities, latest developments in emissions funding opportunities in Canada, an overview of MTIP, and a demonstration of Radicle’s Methane Abatement Project Platform (MAPP) which can be used to conduct data-gathering and measurement for methane and other emissions in the oil and gas industry.
The oil and gas industry today faces additional headwinds for capital investment as evaluation of ESG has emerged as a dominant factor, becoming a new standard for business investment decisions. The Petroleum Services Association of Canada, as part of our PSAC-U Speaker Series, presented an information webinar session to assist our members in this area. Moderated by Bob Peterson and session leader Pat Lipovski (EnvisionGroup), panelists Mark McRae (Sequiera Partners), Todd Van Vliet (Frac Shack), Brian Schmidt (Tamarack Valley Energy), and Meghan Harris-Ngae (EY) provided E&P, OFS, investment and talent recruitment perspectives.
The Petroleum Services Association of Canada, as part of our PSAC-U Speaker Series, presented Christine McMillan, Partner and Jason Clark, Senior Consultant, Crestview Strategy who provided detailed analysis of the federal Speech from the Throne, breaking down what it all means for Canada, for the West, and for the oil and gas industry.
A presentation and Q&A with The Honourable Erin O’Toole, P.C., M.P., Conservative Party of Canada leadership candidate. The event, hosted and moderated by PSAC Interim President and CEO Elizabeth Aquin, took place on Monday, August 17 at 9:00 a.m. MT. Candidate O’Toole discussed his leadership platform, his vision for Canada and the future of the Canadian oil and gas industry, and took questions from PSAC members.
PSAC’s Spring Workshop was a two-day webinar event. Presentations | topics included: Fit for Duty (overview of industry’s work on Fit for Duty, beginning with PSAC’s ask in 2016 through to the recent release of the program development guideline); Carrier Profiles and Audits (process and carrier audit protocol); Transportation of Dangerous Goods (changes to the federal TDG Act and Regulations; federal Equivalency Certificates; and the CGSB Standard on TDG Training); Hours of Service (update and information on Alberta’s two-tier system; implementation of NSC Standards; and vehicle weights and dimensions); Electronic Logging Devices (requirements for federally-regulated carriers; how Alberta will be enforcing the federal ELD Standard; and information specific to oil and gas service sector operations); and Harassment and Violence in the Workplace (issues and trends related to the provisions in Alberta’s OHS Act).
At the half-day workshops in Red Deer and Grande Prairie, MNP LLP provided information to determine a company’s worth and value and the best steps for succession planning for small to medium sized companies in Western Canada.
PSAC recognized that there are enormous geothermal opportunities available in Western Canada and held a members only event which provided an overview of geothermal energy, with a focus on Western Canada. Presentation were given by C-FER Technologies, DEEP Earth Energy Production, Epoch Energy Developments and Terrapin Geothermics Inc. This was followed by a panel discussion on how oilfield services companies can participate in geothermal energy development, a Q&A session and an opportunity to network.
PSAC proudly held its 26th annual STARS & Spurs Gala and raised an impressive $805,000, bringing the total funds raised, since its inception, to almost $18 million for STARS. More than 1,200 guests attended the western-themed “It’s the New Way of the West – The Future Is Now” gala. The event included dinner, raffles, live and silent auctions, networking, and outstanding live performances by award-winning country duo The Reklaws as well as Chris Buck and Greg Albright. Gala guests also toasted the 2020 Honorary Patron, The Honourable Jason Kenney, Premier of Alberta. He was recognized for his outstanding contributions to Canada, his unwavering support for our hard-working, innovative and responsible energy sector, the 535,000 workers it employs across Canada, and to getting Alberta back on track to being the best place in Canada for investment, jobs, and to live. This year’s STARS “Very Important Patient” (VIP)is , former NHL defenseman with the Calgary Flames and Colorado Avalanche, Cory Sarich.
PSAC hosted a webinar presentation with the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service on oil and gas opportunities in Colombia. Juan David Gomez (Trade Commissioner for Oil and Gas in Colombia) and Carmen Sparrow (Trade Commissioner for Oil and Gas in Alberta) informed attendees about key players in the market, expected levels of production activity, upcoming market opportunities, procurement needs from Colombian oil and gas operators, and things to consider when entering the market.
At our AGM, PSAC Core and Associate Core Members reviewed the financial statements, appointed auditors for the upcoming fiscal year, met newly appointed directors, and received reports from the Chair and the President and CEO of PSAC. Long-standing Core Member Awards were presented as well as distinguished service awards.
At our Canadian Oilfield Services Activity Forecast and Industry Outlook, presenters included Ian Gillies, Managing Director, Institutional Research, GMP FirstEnergy; Ben Brunnen, Vice President, Oil Sands, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers; Melissa Greig, GIT, Principal Geoscientist: Upstream Consulting & Research, IHS Markit; andGary Mar, President and CEO, PSAC. Each presenter provided their insights for the coming year.
Dan Giurescu, the Founder of TerraHub, created TerraHub after recognizing the operational efficiencies that could be gained by leveraging blockchain and artificial intelligence to solve business problems. On October 10, 2019, at a breakfast session, members and nonmembers learned more about the Four Links (credential, cost, asset and market) that connect core business functions and enable workflow automation, collaboration, intelligence with context, price transparency. Delegates provided input on what are the key components for a software that would meet their needs.
PSAC introduced members to the $100M Clean Resource Innovation Network (CRIN) that seeks to make Canada the global leader in clean hydrocarbons from source to end use. CRIN Chair and CNRL Vice President Joy Romero briefed members on CRIN; discussed the challenges and opportunities in working together; how to become a member and the obligations; and existing funding opportunities.
On September 26, 2019, at a luncheon at The Westin Calgary, Pierre Cléroux, Vice President, Research and Chief Economist of BDC, presented the most up-to-date information on the performance of global, national and Alberta economies; the latest data and trends that will influence oil and gas sector; and where interest rates are headed and how businesses should navigate the economy to position themselves for growth.
On July 24, 2019, at the Inglewood Golf & Curling Club, PSAC held its annual golf tournament, the “PSAC Working Energy Golf Classic” powering Canadian energy and education, raising funds for awareness and education. This year, the tournament raised over $39,000, thanks to the generosity of energy industry companies, employees, their guests, as well as the numerous sponsors who took to the fairways; over 130 golfers participated in this tournament. Since 2001, the Fund has awarded over $400,000 in scholarships and grants to deserving recipients.
The Classic is a premier event for executives to celebrate Canadian energy and the contributions of the services, supply and manufacturing sector to the Canadian economy while continuing to raise funds for education. This segment of the energy industry employs over 450,000 of the 550,000 Canadians in the energy sector. Canadian energy is a vital contributor to the standard of living enjoyed by Canadians; Canadian values like health, safety, environment, innovation, competitiveness, the rule of law and democracy are an integral part of the Canadian energy identity celebrated during this event.
The 2019 Roger Soucy Legacy Scholarship Funded by KPMG was awarded to Tyson Henderson of Calgary, Alberta, affiliated with Calfrac Well Services. Mr. Henderson is currently pursuing undergraduate studies at the University of Calgary.
The 2019 Remember Jordan Scholarship, funded by Ditch Hitch, was awarded to Kalynn Verrier of Bonnyville, Alberta, affiliated with CEDA International. Ms. Verrier is currently pursuing Occupational Health & Safety Studies at NAIT.
On May 1, 2019, this annual luncheon featured David Yager, Energy Consultant and Writer, and Bemal Mehta, Senior Vice-President, JWN Energy. Dave delivered PSAC’s 2019 Canadian Drilling Activity Forecast Mid-Year Update where PSAC released its latest estimates for 2019 drilling activity within Canada along with the Association’s outlook for Oilfield services for the next eight months. Bemal discussed CapEx trends in Canada and the USA, sharing insights and key trends that have recently unfolded.
In February 2019, at a breakfast seminar, PSAC President and CEO, Gary Mar, provided an update on the Association’s outlook for early 2019, a review of PSAC’s latest activities (continuous activity in government relations, federal and provincial government advocacy days, key issues raised including market access, well decommissioning, NAFTA, energy literacy, etc. and the need for a Canadian Energy Brand). Gary addressed current issues in Workplace Health and Safety such as cannabis in safety-sensitive workplaces and changes to AB’s OHS Legislation; also, he highlighted upcoming events and opportunities.
On January 19, 2019, at the BMO Centre (Stampede Park), PSAC proudly held its 25th annual STARS & Spurs Gala bringing the total funds raised, since its inception, to over $17 million for the Shock Trauma Air Rescue Society (STARS). This year’s gala raised an amazing $1,400,055 and more than 1,500 guests attended! Gala guests of the western-themed “It’s the Way of the West” event enjoyed dinner, raffles, live and silent auctions, networking, and outstanding performances by Hoop Dancer, Dallas Arcand Jr., and award-winning artists George Canyon, Gord Bamford and Aaron Pritchett to dance by. Gala guests also toasted the 2018 Honourary Patron Mark Salkeld who was recognized for his contributions to the success of the PSAC STARS and SPURS Gala as President of PSAC from 2010 to 2018.
PSAC was pleased to have Allan Fogwill (Canadian Energy Research Institute), Jason Switzer (Pembina Institute) and Dr. David Layzell (University of Calgary) deliver presentations at our 2018 Industry Insights Luncheon. Moderated by Stewart Muir (Resource Works BC), our distinguished speakers addressed the current disruption in Canada’s oil and gas industry related to the future of oil and gas in Canada, the pace of change and transition to renewable energy, the potential of hydrogen fuel cell technology to sustain the continued development of our oil and gas resources, all providing insightful intelligence to the oilfield services sector in planning for the future.
At the 2019 Canadian Oilfield Services Activity Forecast and Industry Outlook, insights on key industry trends and projected activity levels for Canada’s oilpatch to assist with business planning for the year ahead were provided by Elias Foscolos, Equity Research Analyst, Industrial Alliance Securities Inc.; Amir Arif, E&P Equity Research, Cormark Securities Inc.; Ben Brunnen, Vice President, Oil Sands, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers; Jim Keating, Newfoundland and Labrador’s Offshore Oil and Gas Industry; and Tom Whalen, President and CEO, PSAC. This event was moderated by Russell Ketter, Senior VP of Sales, Wells Fargo Equipment (sponsor of this Forecast session).