Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Alberta's Lost Opportunities Due to Oil Dependence

Alberta is well known for being a strong supporter of its oil interests at the expense of clean energy alternatives, however, even in this province there are some powerful people who are seeing the need for change. According to a recent report titled "Tracking the Energy Revolution" while many provinces in Canada are advancing clean energy, Alberta is a laggard.

It is getting harder for Alberta to ignore the fact that clean energy is meaningfully contributing to the Canadian economy and providing jobs.

The tremendous volatility of oil prices and the increasing pressure to scale back fossil fuel use make the province's current all-in oil strategy very risky. This is about addressing the very real risks of stranded oil assets that would leave the province with massive quantities of reserves which cannot be exploited. At current prices the tar sands are marginally viable, if the price of oil sinks much lower they will cease to be profitable.

In the long term there are tremendous economic costs to the Canadian economy due to its reliance on fossil fuels.

As explained by Alberta Finance Minister Robin Campbell, the province has to “get off the oil train.”

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