oil sands

Oil & Gas

Suncor to Canadian oil sands holders: hope ‘not a strategy’

Suncor Energy Inc. wants shareholders of Canadian Oil Sands Ltd. to weigh its C$4.7 billion ($3.5 billion) takeover offer closely and reject a strategy that relies on the “hope” of better performance. Suncor appealed directly to Canadian Oil Sands shareholders in a letter Thursday after two offers earlier this year were rejected and last month’s hostile bid was met with a poison-pill defense put up by its management and board. Suncor says it will devote more resources to fixing an oil-sands mining project co- owned by seven companies after it boosts its stake to 49 percent from 12 percent by taking over Canadian Oil Sands, the largest shareholder. The battle over Canadian Oil Sands and its ownership of the bitumen mining operator Syncrude comes as the industry struggles with low oil prices that make most expansions too costly, and even some existing production unprofitable.

Oil & Gas

Suncor Energy ramps up hostile $3.3billion bid for Canadian Oil Sands

Suncor Energy Inc. is stepping up its hostile $3.3 billion bid for Canadian Oil Sands Ltd. by asking Alberta regulators to strike down the target’s new shareholder rights plan aimed at preventing its takeover. The Alberta Securities Commission will hold a hearing on Nov. 26 to consider the so-called poison pill adopted by the Canadian Oil Sands board last month, Suncor said in a statement Friday. The hearing follows Suncor’s application for an order to cease the new rights plan. Canadian Oil Sands vowed to protect its shareholders. The Canadian Oil Sands shareholder plan calls for 120 days to consider bids. Because Suncor’s offer is open for acceptance only until Dec. 4, unless extended or withdrawn by Suncor, it would not be a permitted bid under the new plan, Canadian Oil Sands said last month.

Oil & Gas

Alberta probing heron deaths at Syncrude oil sands site

Alberta's energy regulator is investigating the deaths of 30 blue herons at a Syncrude Canada oil sands site in the northern part of the Canadian province, the agency and company said on Saturday. The Alberta Energy Regulator said it sent investigators to the Syncrude Canada Mildred Lake site, which is about 40 km (25 miles) north of Fort McMurray. In 2010, Syncrude was fined C$3 million ($2.29 million) for negligence in the 2008 deaths of 1,600 ducks in a toxic tailings pond, a case that fueled international concern about the environmental impact of developing Canada's oil sands.

Oil & Gas

In rare move, PBF snaps up oil cargo from Western Canada

U.S. oil refiner PBF Energy is shipping a cargo of crude from Western Canada to supply its plant on the other side of the continent, a rare move traders say is a sign steep discounts for oil sands are upending age-old trade routes. The deal set the market abuzz on Wednesday with traders speculating about the status of the shipment of up to 500,000 barrels of crude. Two traders said PBF picked up a cargo coming from the Kearl oil sands projects operated by Imperial Oil in northern Alberta at a hefty discount.

Oil & Gas

Builder of leaky Nexen pipeline said it followed designs

The builder of a ruptured Nexen Energy oil sands pipeline in Canada that caused one of North America's largest oil-related land spills said on Monday it had followed the design plans it was given for the infrastructure. Surerus Pipeline Inc, a contractor based in Fort St. John in British Columbia, "had no involvement in this project after the completion, so whatever Nexen's doing, they're doing," said Sean Surerus, vice president of the company, said in an interview. "The project was completed to the standards. We were the installers. ... We had no design capacity in the project."


The end of a megaproject oil sands era

The era of the megaproject in Canada’s oil sands is fading. Crude’s price slump, pressure to get off fossil fuels and tax increases in Alberta are adding to high costs and a lack of pipelines, prompting producers from Suncor Energy Inc. to Imperial Oil Ltd. to accelerate a shift to smaller projects. Companies are deferring new mines in favor of cheaper, bite-sized drilling programs that deliver quicker returns and require less labor. The moves will help reduce cost overruns and make Canadian companies more competitive with U.S. shale producers. The trade off will be reduced production growth and a smaller economic boost for the country’s oil patch.

Oil & Gas

Canada oil sands operators start return as fire eases

Companies in Alberta prepared to return to work as rain eased a wildfire that prompted the shutdown of 10 percent of Canada’s oil-sands production. Canadian Natural Resources Ltd.’s operation staff received permission today to go to the Primrose oil sands site to implement a “step-by-step recovery plan,” Julie Woo, a company spokeswoman, said in a statement Monday. Cenovus Energy Inc. plans to send essential staff to the Foster Creek project once a government team assesses potential hazards, the company said on its website.

Oil & Gas

Suncor to push ahead with Fort Hills oil sands amid oil rout

Suncor Energy Inc., Canada’s largest oil company, will push ahead with its planned Fort Hills oil sands project even as the price of oil hovers around $50 a barrel. Suncor will spend C$1.6 billion ($1.3 billion) this year as it advances construction of the project, the Calgary-based company said in a statement.The operation will begin producing oil at the end of 2017, the company added.

Oil & Gas

MCW claims oilsands extraction breakthrough

Toronto-based MCW Energy Group claims it will begin producing cleaner, cheaper oil from oil sands next year at a newly built processing plant in northeastern Utah. It said that a new system that dispenses with the use of water is behind the claim. MCW said the system will enable oil sands to be produced cleanly “without creating the toxic wastelands that have resulted from oil sands projects in Western Canada."

Oil & Gas

Oil sands beckon despite slump

THE current oil-price slump is currently causing difficulties, but the market for equipment and services in the oil sands of Canada is large and set to grow even bigger once the cost of a barrel of crude gets back over $65.