Around Town: Fort McMurray News (Week of February 22)

By The A-Team | Feb 22, 2019 | Fort McMurray - Community Events

It’s time for another edition of our weekly column from the A-Team. Here is some important news for the week.

First, the Alberta government is making some important moves regarding the crude-by-rail plan and its impact locally and on a much wider scale:

Province to Reduce Crude-by-Rail Plan with 4,400 Rail Car Lease

The Alberta government will lease 4,400 rail cars to move oil out of the province, resulting in capacity of 120,000 barrels per day by mid-2020, Premier Rachel Notley said Tuesday.

Instead of purchasing rail cars, the government as part of its crude-by-rail strategy will buy rail service from Canadian Pacific Railway and Canadian National Railway to ship crude oil to international markets, including the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Initial estimates last November called for 7,000 rail cars, but the province decided only 4,400 would be required after talks with the railway companies found more efficient rail routes to move the 120,000 barrels of oil per day, the original goal set by the government. – Via

According to the authority, the curtailment measure is not just scaling back on its original plan. It is also a temporary solution in order to augment the differential on the oil price.

More on the latest news in the energy sector, a US-based company is intending to call it quits in the oilsands industry in Canada:

Devon Energy Announced Intention to Exit Canadian Oilsands Niche

Oklahoma City-based Devon Energy Corp. says it will pursue the “separation” of its Canadian assets from its core business, a move that could include an outright sale or creation of a new company to own and operate them.

Devon owns the Jackfish steam-driven oilsands complex, with a capacity of 105,000 barrels per day of bitumen.

They also own conventional heavy oil wells near Lloydminster, Alta., that produce about 15,000 barrels per day. – Via

Some industry watchers are quite alarmed with this trend in the energy sector as foreign companies have also reduced their participation and exposure to the Canadian oilsands.

Finally, in Ottawa, the energy sector is gaining more attention as Canadian organizations are showing their support that could possibly change the trend in the industry:

Ottawa’s Truck Convoy “It’s Just Amazing” Expressed Support to Energy Sector

Cold Lake David Yurdiga was in Ottawa on Tuesday to welcome the ‘United We Roll’ convoy who had traveled all the way from Red Deer.

Much of the frustration stems from the lack of progress being made on pipelines, more specifically the Trans Mountain pipeline and Energy East projects.

“Having a convoy drive up from the west to the east shows how serious of an issue this is and the government has to take notice of that – we’re not going to go away, we’re going to continue to push until something happens.”

Participants of the activity expressed that their focus is on gas, oil, and nothing else. This came after a couple of their members created an anti-immigration distraction.

That’s all for this weeks’ roundup. Check back on The A-Team blog for more news and updates on Fort McMurray.

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The A-Team

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