Alberta needs to address the future of energy in Canada.  This is a particularly important conversation now, as we witness the geopolitical turmoil in Europe.  We must understand from the European experiences of an over-accelerated transition to renewable energy, especially now that a severe energy insecurity situation has arisen, to ensure we don’t repeat the same mistakes in Canada.

There are a number of strategic options that I would pursue when elected as leader of the UCP.  These policies are visionary, practical and achievable.  My plan looks to the future of energy and maintains investment in the Province – investments that would take “AlbertaForward.”

Expanding and Diversifying Alberta’s Energy Economy

The economy of Alberta depends on our producing affordable, secure and clean energy.  As the global demand grows for energy it is not just Alberta’s path to prosperity that is at stake but that of the world. Alberta can be global leader to achieve sensible, energy solutions at a time when governments are struggling to achieve progressive energy transitions. Canadians have been reminded of the importance of energy security and the value that Alberta brings to Canadian energy reliability and security of supply. Canada is fortunate that Alberta has developed the resources and technical engineering and financial expertise to sustain reliable, affordable energy while reducing its carbon footprint.

Specific Program Initiatives

  • I would design programs to create further investments in new technologies like carbon capture, utilization and storage to assist the global energy transition while working to maintain Canadian energy security and affordability.  I will be particularly focused on utilization of waste carbon. Albert has strategic assets, such as the Alberta Carbon Trunk Line (ACTL) which is the largest capacity carbon pipeline in the world, that will enhance these efforts.
  • I recognize the success of AOSTRA and would establish an Alberta Heartland Region Economic Planning Agency to further attract investment and expand infrastructure in Alberta.
  • I would create incentives, in consultation with industry, to incentivize producers to build storage capacity and strategic storage reserves.  This will allow producers to take peak pricing into consideration.
  • I will instruct the AER to create a Small Business Advisory group to assist small producers navigate through the regulatory system.   In addition, the AER will be instructed to expand the scope of consultation in their activities to include small business operators and producers, who are often the heart of innovation in the energy sector.
  • I will implement steps to ensure a stable regulatory and tax structure as it relates to energy development, to ensure the attraction of long-term investment in Alberta
  • I would establish an Alberta Energy Framework Cabinet Committee to work collaboratively with Alberta’s energy producers to deploy new, clean technologies like carbon capture to reduce carbon emissions and to develop strategies for cleanup of orphaned well sites and accelerate the production of low-carbon fuels like net-zero oil, natural gas and hydrogen. With these initiatives Alberta can become a major global supplier of net zero oil and gas and to become a global center for production and export of hydrogen.

Developing and Expanding the HydrogenEconomy in Alberta

National and international demand for natural gas from Alberta could significantly increase as governments around the world develop hydrogen strategies to meet emission reduction targets for greenhouse gasses (GHG’s).  There would be a material financial advantage associated with the development of an Alberta hydrogen economy particularly in the Edmonton Region Hydrogen Hub. Alberta has proven experience for creation of hydrogen, combined with abundant low-cost natural gas feedstocks and carbon capture utilization and storage technologies. Moreover, this approach to greener energy sources and production in Alberta would receive strong support from the Federal Government – in ways that working constructively, as opposed to senseless confrontation – would work to Alberta’s advantage by increasing investment certainty and addressing the future marketplace for energy.  Alberta can seize the initiative and become a world leader in these important new technologies.

The Calgary-based Transition Accelerator recently reported that the combined potential of Canada’s domestic hydrogen markets and export opportunities to the U.S., Asia and Europe could reach $100 billion per year. Wood Mackenzie has forecast that low-carbon hydrogen demand will increase from practically zero today to 211 million tonnes by 2050. Including exports, potential market demand could exceed 30 MT to 60 MT per year. Alberta can act responsibly, and constructively, to meet this demand.

My leadership in a renewed UCP government would focus on the future for Alberta in achievable ways to attract investment and pave the way for a future, sustainable Alberta economy with jobs and investment secured to better our Province.