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Calgary & Alberta Economy

Patrick.1980

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Not good news, but not as bad as some in the media are making it out to be, as most of the jobs will remain here in Canada. As surreaplaces mentioned, over time more jobs and decision making will move south, but only to a point. If the industry picks up again, you can bet that most of the new Encana jobs will be in Canada. If things got really busy I wouldn't be surprised to see them move HQ back.

This is devastating news to the industry and to Calgary. One of the largest O&G companies in Canada basing itself in the U.S and changing their name to further distance themselves from Canada. The way it is being reported the announcement makes it sound like they are relocating so no doubt there is going to be a lot of confusion and misunderstanding. Despite what the company is saying, you have to think there will be further job losses, more vacant office space, long term. It will also likely impact local suppliers and other feeder companies.
If this does not reverberate all the way to Ottawa and finally get the industry the attention it needs, nothing will. 😲 😲 😲
 

JonnyCanuck

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Not good news, but not as bad as some in the media are making it out to be, as most of the jobs will remain here in Canada. As surreaplaces mentioned, over time more jobs and decision making will move south, but only to a point. If the industry picks up again, you can bet that most of the new Encana jobs will be in Canada. If things got really busy I wouldn't be surprised to see them move HQ back.
The only way things are going to get 'busy' again is if Canada can export energy to markets other than the U.S. We need pipelines to tidewater and LNG plants built to do that. I don't know how Encana setting their sights on the U.S, helps that cause in any way.
 

Chowda7

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It's buried in the article but the company looking to build the Eagle Spirit pipeline has purchased a port in Alaska rather than trying to go through BC as originally planned. Hopefully this moves forward as I would think support for a pipeline would be higher in Alaska. Fingers crossed.

 

darwink

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It's buried in the article but the company looking to build the Eagle Spirit pipeline has purchased a port in Alaska rather than trying to go through BC as originally planned. Hopefully this moves forward as I would think support for a pipeline would be higher in Alaska. Fingers crossed.

Except you need a Presidential certificate for international borders. And of course a Canadian federal government approval.

I don’t understand the sentiment that it would be easier at all. It is based on a jaundiced view of the world where things are easy in the USA (granted they are when you don’t have to cross stare lines or get a federal assessment) and hard in Canada.
 

Morshed

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Except you need a Presidential certificate for international borders. And of course a Canadian federal government approval.

I don’t understand the sentiment that it would be easier at all. It is based on a jaundiced view of the world where things are easy in the USA (granted they are when you don’t have to cross stare lines or get a federal assessment) and hard in Canada.
They already mentioned in different occasions that they have Donald Trump and the Alaska governor support...pretty much that's all they need to get American permits.
Also president Donald Trump gave the thumps up for the Alaska Alberta railway to get going...it's a rail way but it will get more of our products to market, the A2A Railway corporation has recently set up an office in Calgary too.
A2A Railway
 

JonnyCanuck

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Other than approving Keystone XL to cross the U.S border, Trump has not helped in getting it built. There continues to be opposition by individual states. Now the recent spill in Keystone has brought more negativity to the discussion.
 

JonnyCanuck

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All this means is that the economy may have 'bottomed out'. A 2.4% increase on such a low base will be hardly noticeable with respect to jobs, consumer spending, home construction etc. Home builders went into 2019 being cautiously optimistic with an eye to 2020 as being a breakout year. Unless, there is some serious improvement (i.e corporate earnings, job creation etc) in the oil and gas sector, we are in for another year of negligible economic growth. There is no other industry or sector in the province that can make up for it.
 

darwink

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Since so many jobs were for designing and managing the expansion of oil and gas, I doubt we will ever see them again or at least, not in anywhere close to the same way. The others that have been lost in O&G seem to have been automated out of existence (out of necessity due to prices). Earnings might come back, but jobs? Maybe a bit for companies that are running themselves on skeleton crews to try to keep the lights on.

Production has been growing - not even thrown off its expansion pace really by the recession.
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I'm not sure there is anything that can drive natural gas back - liquids rich saved part of the industry after the price collapse for dry gas, but then they suffered a price collapse too.

Retail sales, just crawling back after the recovery.
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You're right about house buildings being bullish earlier in the year:
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- I doubt that forecast will hold by the end of the year.

There is a lot of slack, excess capacity out there. I'd guess we will have about a 25% smaller economy than we would have otherwise had if the 2010-2015 trend had held.

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2.4% may get us back above our prerecession peak. After which we are out of "recovery" and into "expansion".
 

DougB

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Except you need a Presidential certificate for international borders. And of course a Canadian federal government approval.

I don’t understand the sentiment that it would be easier at all. It is based on a jaundiced view of the world where things are easy in the USA (granted they are when you don’t have to cross stare lines or get a federal assessment) and hard in Canada.
Using a port in Alaska gets around the fake tanker ban implemented by C48. The bill cannot ban tanker traffic off northern BC as the US has disputed jurisdiction over those waters since the 1800’s and currently sends hundreds of tankers per year through them. All the highly discriminatory C48 does is ban loading of bitumen from ports in Northern BC. Eagle Spirit will still face the impossible hurdles presented by C69 such as requiring the proponent to detail an alternative to the project and provide a gender based analysis, whatever that is. The source of hope is that indigenous ownership of the project will neutralize eNGO’s ability to manipulate other indigenous out groups into opposing. If a Democrat wins the White House, the project will likely face veto which is why Keystone needs to be well under construction by that point.
 

darwink

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The proof will be in the pudding for C-69, but certainly an analysis of alternatives was required for earlier assessments too. And gender based analysis is pretty simple.
Important to remember that the courts have stated that the crown must have as much information as possible about impacts of projects, weigh the impacts with benefits and make a decision.

A finding that their are negative impacts for climate, women, fish, etc does not mean the project will be rejected on that basis. That is cabinet’s decision. You might like a particular cabinet or not, but they can reject a project that has minimal impacts or accept a project that has huge impacts, it is up to cabinet and that is not a change.

As for C-48 that is a different problem of course. But should the current 3 pipelines finally be finished, I find it doubtful that Alberta’s production levels will ever reach a point where we overwhelm that takeaway volume. Prices are just too low with no prospect of long term recovery.
 

zagox

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The proof will be in the pudding for C-69, but certainly an analysis of alternatives was required for earlier assessments too. And gender based analysis is pretty simple.
Important to remember that the courts have stated that the crown must have as much information as possible about impacts of projects, weigh the impacts with benefits and make a decision.

A finding that their are negative impacts for climate, women, fish, etc does not mean the project will be rejected on that basis. That is cabinet’s decision. You might like a particular cabinet or not, but they can reject a project that has minimal impacts or accept a project that has huge impacts, it is up to cabinet and that is not a change.

As for C-48 that is a different problem of course. But should the current 3 pipelines finally be finished, I find it doubtful that Alberta’s production levels will ever reach a point where we overwhelm that takeaway volume. Prices are just too low with no prospect of long term recovery.
Gender based analyses have often been a part of major environmental assessments since the 1990s.

Here is how it works in practice: you hire a sociologist as part of the team preparing the EA. They write up some paragraphs about how work camps can be tough places for women, and how most miners/drillers/pipeliners are men. The sociologist gets paid $50k for this effort (not a big deal for an EA with a $20M filing budget).

Next, indigenous groups asks questions during the public hearing about how the project proponent will make the work camps nicer for women, and will ask the proponent to hire more women in leadership roles. This is ironic because the indigenous groups asking the questions usually happen to have a male chief, an all-male council, a patriarchal society, and high levels of domestic violence and abuse, some of which is perpetrated by the chief and/or councillors.

Then, the proponent negotiates with the regulator and/or the government to commit to some vague language about improving conditions for women, and reporting on progress. This goes into the conditions imposed on the project certificate.

Finally, a glossy report is produced annually detailing how very few miners/drillers/pipeliners are women, but progress is being made and people are working hard to address it. The sociologist gets paid $20k annually to update this report.

Voila, gender-based analysis. AKA employment support act for consulting sociologists. It won't stop any pipelines but it won't get any built either.
 

Silence&Motion

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Global: ‘Wexit’ cost Calgary chance to become headquarters for Canadian digital company: CED

From the article: "Many Alberta CEOs in agriculture, energy, finance and transportation sectors agree Alberta’s image now is that of a province with a struggling economy, a declining and outdated industry, a lack of innovation and a fascination with separation, said Adam Legge, president of the recently formed Business Council of Alberta. Those negative impressions are inaccurate, but they are having an effect, he said."

Calgary has so much to recommend, but it is its own worst enemy.
 

Chowda7

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150,000 bpd capacity increase by end of December from drag reduction and optimization projects by Enbridge and TC Energy. Fairly significant in the short term that's essentially adding a minor pipeline.

 

JonnyCanuck

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Does anyone feel optimistic about the Alberta economy and Calgary specifically for 2020? I consider myself a realist rather than a pessimist however...

- the price of oil & gas continues to languish and none of the forecasts I have seen indicate that either will recover appreciably next year
- there will be little progress on TMX, meaning it is still 2-3 years away from being fully operational, and that is if construction goes full bore next year
- Keystone XL continues to drag on in the U.S. The addition of Line 3 will help a little but there are too many Alberta oil companies that need more pipeline capacity. It just is not enough
- new LNG plants will not be operational. There is some sentiment that by the time they are up & running, it may be too late to capture a decent share of global exports. Meanwhile the U.S is light years ahead of Canada in this initiative
- foreign investment in oil & gas infrastructure has disappeared. Alberta based companies have reduced their capital spending in the province.
- the U.S is not nearly dependent on Canada for oil & gas as it once was. Other than heavy oil which they don't produce, they are merely supplementing other forms of energy with Canadian imports. On a 'whim' from Trump & crew, these could be sourced from anywhere other than Canada.
- the agriculture industry has been 'wacked' by China trade interruptions, and weather related set backs
- the unemployment rate in Calgary, particularly in good paying job sectors, is still very high. That means still fewer people will be migrating to Calgary. Hence, new home construction is not expected to increase next year

What scares me most is the apathy that seems to be pervasive in the rest of Canada, outside of Alberta & Saskatchewan. Many Canadians, at large, seem to be shrugging their shoulders. They seem to think that we don't need an energy industry in Canada. This is all part of the plan to eliminate fossil fuels. This sentiment is not helped by the lack of vision and leadership at the federal level when it comes to energy policy. Where do Albertans look for confidence?😨
 

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