Canadian Oil & Gas? Climate Action? Choose Both! (Part 2 of 3)

Canada Reduced Oil Sands GHG Emission Intensities by 36% Since 2000

In Part 1 of this series, I discussed why Canadians shouldn’t have to choose between strong, meaningful climate action and the global leadership the Canadian energy sector has shown at every stage in the production and distribution of our oil and gas.

I explained that, through many constructive conversations I’ve had with people right across the energy sector over the last decade, I’ve come to realize Canada’s energy resources are something we can take pride in, and that through distributing our energy products to a hungry global market is in the best interests of the planet, not just in an economic sense but also environmentally and from a human rights perspective as well.

The information in this 3-part blog is reliable and readily available in the public domain. From clean technology, environmental innovation and renewable power generation to emission intensity reductions, carbon capture, and carbon pricing initiatives, the facts tell a compelling story.

Add the following information to the facts I laid out in Part 1, and I think you’ll begin to see why Canada should be a country of choice for both energy investment and supply.

Examples of Climate Action by Canada’s Oil & Gas Sector

Canada Plans to Reduce Methane Emissions from Oil and Gas by 45% by 2025

> With greenhouse gas (GHG) intensities down by roughly 24 per cent since 2012, oil sands now emit just 4 to 6 per cent more GHGs than the global average on a well-to-wheels basis; several newer projects already boast below-average carbon footprints.

> If emissions from the consumption of refined product are included, Canadian-sourced heavy oil is competitive (within ten per cent of the global average for the majority of oil sands barrels -- even before applying the impacts of new technologies).

> Canada ranked 2nd on the Global Cleantech Innovation Index 2020. Further, Canada ranked 7th on the Democracy Index 2019, ahead of all major oil and gas producers except Norway, and 9th on the Rule of Law Index 2020, faring better than any major oil and gas producer, again except Norway.

> Canada ranks 11th on the Women, Peace, Security Index 2019-20, ranking higher than almost all other major oil and gas producing nations across the globe except for Norway and the U.K.

> Canada ranked 12th on the Corruption Perceptions Index 2019, which means we’re perceived as one of the least corrupt major oil and gas producing nations in the world – a higher rank than other major global petroleum producing countries save Norway and the U.K.

> Canada ranked 16th on the Freedom of Press Index 2020, again, well above all other major global oil and gas producers except for Norway.

> Only 10.5 per cent of global crude oil production is subject to carbon pricing, with Canada accounting for about 4.2 per cent of that production. Meanwhile, Canada’s oil and gas sector is an integral part of communities across the country; donations are made to communities and non-profits sometimes on a weekly basis to support mental health, education and infrastructure as a few examples.

> Our oil sands sector injects more than $80 million each year on average into communities to support resiliency programs, education / skills development, and engagement with Indigenous and youth groups. That’s genuine leadership.

> Canadian oil and gas companies have spent tens of billions on procurement of goods and services from Indigenous-owned businesses over the past decade alone. At the same time, average female employment rates among oil and gas companies in Canada are increasing substantially, with some companies seeing double percentage point increases in recent years.

A Balanced Discussion on Canadian Energy and Climate Action is Needed

Why do discussions on energy or the broader natural resources sector matter? It’s simple: natural resources are Canada’s economic lifeblood. Oil and gas alone has contributed a half-trillion dollars to Canadian governments since 2000.

In the final article of this 3-part blog series, I’ll add some final proof-points to what’s become a solid list of Canadian energy sector accomplishments in the realm of environmental, social and governance (ESG) metrics.

But for now, let’s just say this: Given our leading record on global ESG criteria, Canada’s climate action and environmental leadership should be viewed as a model for energy production and distribution globally. On any objective analysis, we’re among the very best in the world.

In case you missed it: Part 1 - Canadian Oil & Gas? Climate Action? Choose Both!

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