CALGARY, Nov. 14, 2013 /CNW/ - Speaking with oil sands executives and associations, PwC's oil sands technology innovation
report - Innovation surge sparks oil sands opportunities, reveal four innovation surges that are opening up a new era of
opportunity for Canadian oil sands: reducing economic costs; improving
environmental performance; industry collaboration; and converting more
resources to reserves.
The report found that for a majority of oil sands companies,
environmental and economic goals are consistent. By improving
operational performance, a company can also reduce its emissions
Improvements in energy efficiency have led to a 26% reduction in
emissions intensity in the oil sands industry between 1990 and 2010.
Currently, Alberta is investing CA$1.3 billion over 15 years in two
large-scale carbon capture storage (CCS) projects - one of which is
Shell Canada's Quest CCS project.
Reynold Tetzlaff, National Energy Leader, PwC, explains, "The pursuit of environmental outcomes is a push and pull: a
push from within the industry and a pull from regulatory institutions.
Environmental performance capabilities keep improving while regulatory
standards continue to get stricter. It's not always clear which is
leading and which is following."
Collaboration is key
According to the report, the pace of innovation is being driven by the
increasingly open exchange of ideas- stemming from new industry
alliances, some "intra-corporate", some as partnerships with innovative
suppliers and others with government bodies.
Looking at Canada's Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA) and its
members, the organization represents nearly 90% of oil sands production
and agrees to share experience and intellectual property with other
Tetzlaff adds, "It's this type of collaboration like the COSIA example
that has resulted in technological advancements occurring at a much
quicker pace than conceived of even five years ago." To date, COSIA
member companies have shared 560 distinct technologies and innovations
that cost nearly CA$1 billion to develop.
Resources to reserves
CEO of Connacher Oil and Gas, Chris Bloomer, says in the report, "There
are many ways in which technology is converting resources to reserves.
The better we can characterize the formation, the more bitumen we can
An example of this includes Cenovus using Wedge Well™ technology to
produce a higher percentage of bitumen, while working towards lowering
the environmental impact. As well, Athabasca Oil Corporation's
Thermal Assisted Gravity Drainage (TAGD) is a potential production
technology for the in situ recovery of bitumen resources. TAGD uses
electrical energy to stimulate the reservoir instead of steam in in
Tetzlaff concludes, "The successful deployment of new solutions and
approaches are dramatically increasing recovery rates and reserves. As
a result of the improvements in recovery and the outlook for further
breakthrough enhancements in the future, Canada's oil sands continue to
represent an attractive investment."
For more information on PwC's Oil Sands Technology report - Innovation surge sparks oil sands opportunities, please visit: www.pwc.com/ca/oilsandstech .
Follow PwC on Twitter at @PwC_Canada_LLP and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pwccanada.
About PwC Canada
PwC Canada helps organizations and individuals create the value they're
looking for. More than 5,700 partners and staff in offices across the
country are committed to delivering quality in assurance, tax,
consulting and deals services. PwC Canada is a member of the PwC
network of firms with more than 180,000 people in 158 countries. Find
out more by visiting us at www.pwc.com/ca.
© 2013 PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, an Ontario limited liability
partnership. All rights reserved.
PwC refers to the Canadian member firm, and may sometimes refer to the
PwC network. Each member firm is a separate legal entity. Please see www.pwc.com/structure for further details.
SOURCE: PwC Management Services LP
For further information:
T: +1 416 687 8644