Around Town: Fort McMurray News (Week of December 21)

By The A-Team | Dec 21, 2018 | 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.

After the provincial government forced producers to cut oil production next year, Suncor criticized the interference, being joined by Husky this week:

Husky Energy trims capital budget, criticizes Alberta oil curtailment plan

In its 2019 capital budget announcement, Husky said its expected contribution to the cuts in January is “considerably higher” than the 8.7 per cent industry-wide target announced by Premier Rachel Notley earlier this month.

It also says the province is not properly considering in its calculations rising production at two of Husky’s steam-driven northern Alberta oilsands projects.

“Husky continues to attain global pricing for the vast majority of our production. Our low-cost integrated model in North America and high-margin offshore business shield us from the commodity discounts realized by many of our peers,” said CEO Rob Peabody in a news release.

“We are disappointed with government intervention given the market’s natural ability to remove uneconomic barrels.” Via

The oil price differential reached a high of US$52 a barrel in October, but the government's announcement has caused it to fall to around $11.

Earlier in the fall, the local Chamber of Commerce started its annual "Shop Local Passport Program," which aims to get more citizens shopping around the community. This year's results outpaced the last:

Shop Local Event Sees Over $449K Spent at Local Businesses

In roughly two months, more than $449,000 was spent at the roughly 30 participating businesses.

This is more than triple last year’s total of $117,000.

Executive Director of the Chamber Alexis Foster tells Mix News it’s great to see residents support their local businesses.

“It’s really great to see that local grassroots push now to support these local businesses – I think people are really starting to realize that we need to use them or we lose them.”

The Chamber expects next year to be even bigger, with numbers possibly hitting $1 million.

During last year's municipal election, the issue of fly-in, fly-out (FIFO) camps was front and center. Since then, discussions with the industry has led to little results, setting 2019 to be the year it gets addressed:

Commuters, pipelines and downtown will dominate council in 2019: Scott

Work camps and commuter workers will be a top priority for Mayor Don Scott in 2019.

At council’s final meeting of the year earlier this month, Scott motioned that the municipality stop any new work camps within 120 kilometres of Fort McMurray.

Currently, 30 per cent of the region’s population live on the 109 work camps in Wood Buffalo.

Scott said he made the motion because the municipality has seen no progress on the issue in discussions with industry stakeholders.

“There’s been no progress, so it’s time for action,” he said in a year end interview. Commuters, pipelines and downtown will dominate council in 2019: Scott | Fort McMurray Today

Pipelines and downtown revitalization will also be addressed: the two issues have long been a concern for many in the region.

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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