Canada: Significant Developments In Canadian Energy – For The Month Of March 2016

Last Updated: April 18 2016
Article by Erik Arnold and Daniel Lo


  • March 9, 2016 – Encana Corporation is exploring the sale of more non-core assets in the United States and Canada that could net proceeds of approximately $1 billion. Encana is open to offers on all of its non-core assets including the Deep Panuke offshore gas field in Nova Scotia; its Horn River and Wheatland assets in Western Canada; natural gas assets in the Piceance Basin in northwest Colorado; its San Juan assets in New Mexico; and its Tuscaloosa Marine Shale assets in Mississippi and Louisiana.
  • March 21, 2016 – Bankers Petroleum Ltd., one of Albania's largest foreign investors, said on Sunday it has agreed to be acquired by affiliates of China's Geo-Jade Petroleum Corp. for C$575 million. Bankers Petroleum said it will be bought by firms owned by the Chinese oil and gas exploration and production company for C$2.20 per share. The Canadian company said its corporate and technical headquarters will remain in Calgary. The deal is subject to shareholder approval at a meeting before the end of May. Bankers Petroleum said the company will be delisted after the sale.
  • March 23, 2016 – SECURE Energy Services Inc. has closed its $150-million bought deal common share financing with a syndicate of underwriters. Net proceeds of the offering will be used to temporarily repay bank indebtedness, increase working capital and fund ongoing capital expenditure programs and acquisition opportunities. The focus of near-term potential acquisitions will be in the processing, recovery and disposal and midstream asset classes.


  • March 11, 2016 – Imperial Oil Limited has filed regulatory applications with the Alberta Energy Regulator to seek approval of a new in situ oilsands project on its Cold Lake lease area. The proposed Cold Lake expansion project will use solvent-assisted, steam-assisted gravity drainage technology to access a bitumen resource in the Grand Rapids formation with recoverable potential of approximately 550 million bbls of contingent resources, development pending, which is Imperial's share before royalties.
  • March 24, 2016 – Renaissance Oil Corp. will likely be in the running when Mexico puts some of its shale oil and gas fields up for auction this fall, while others will be closely watching the process, as the country moves ahead with the next stage in its efforts to end the monopoly of state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex). Renaissance Oil Corp. is the only Canadian-based oil and gas producer so far to have secured blocks as a result of the auction process that has been underway in the country.
  • March 22, 2016 – Suncor Energy Inc.'s acquisition of Canadian Oil Sands Limited (COS) has been completed following shareholder approval of an amalgamation agreement at a special meeting of COS shareholders Monday morning. Suncor, through a wholly owned subsidiary, acquired 76.75 million COS shares (representing approximately 15.8 per cent of the outstanding COS shares) and now owns 484.61 million COS shares (representing 100 per cent) of the issued and outstanding COS shares.


  • March 9, 2016 – The Canadian government announced that it will proceed with a pipeline safety law passed by its predecessor, one that makes Canadian companies liable for the clean-up costs of competitor pipeline firms in certain cases. The government will allow the Pipeline Safety Act, which incorporated a "polluter pays" principle on spill costs, to take effect in June as scheduled.
  • March 9, 2016 – Imperial Oil Limited has reached agreements with five fuel distributors in Canada to sell its remaining 497 company-owned Esso retail stations. Distributors purchasing the sites include Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. for retail stations in Ontario and Quebec, 7-Eleven Canada Inc. for sites in Alberta and British Columbia, Harnois Groupe pétrolier for sites in Quebec, Parkland Fuel Corp. for sites in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and Wilson Fuel Co. Limited for sites in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. The sales are anticipated to close by year-end 2016, subject to regulatory approvals. Proceeds from the transactions are valued at about $2.8 billion.
  • March 10, 2016 – Veresen Inc. reported that the Cutbank Ridge Partnership approved the $930 million Saturn Phase 2 processing facility near Dawson Creek, B.C. It is the third major facility now under construction as part of the Veresen Midstream infrastructure development. Saturn Phase 2 is a fully contracted expansion to the recently constructed Saturn compressor station, and will add 200 mmcf per day of compression and 400 mmcf per day of processing, and significant inlet liquids and NGL handling facilities.
  • March 18, 2016 – TransCanada Corporation announced an agreement to acquire Columbia Pipeline Group, Inc., a Houston, Texas-based company that operates an approximate 24,000-kilometre network of interstate natural gas pipelines extending from New York to the Gulf of Mexico, with a significant presence in the Appalachia production basin. The aggregate transaction value is US$13 billion including the assumption of roughly $2.8 billion of debt.
  • March 18, 2016 – Paramount Resources Ltd. has entered into an agreement with a wholly-owned subsidiary of Pembina Pipeline Corporation for the sale of its Musreau Complex and related midstream assets for cash and other considerations of over $600 million. The midstream transaction includes the 50 mmcf per day refrigeration plant, the 200 mmcf per day deep cut plant, the 22,500 bbl per day condensate stabilizer, the amine facility and the gas sales pipeline connecting the Musreau Complex to the TransCanada Pipelines Ltd. meter station, as well as the majority of Paramount's larger-diameter gathering system in the Musreau area. Also included in the midstream transaction are the site and engineering and design work for the future 06-18 gas processing plant.
  • March 21, 2016 – Canadian regulators extended by three months Petroliam Nasional Bhd.'s (Petronas) application to build a liquefied natural gas terminal on the B.C. coast so the Malaysian company can provide more information about the project's environmental impacts. The extension came 750 days after the project's original submission and four days before the deadline for a ministerial decision on the environmental impacts.
  • March 21, 2016 – Canada's Environment Minister on Friday approved a liquefied natural gas export project proposed by Woodfibre LNG in British Columbia, after an environmental review found the project was "not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects." Environment Minister Catherine McKenna imposed numerous conditions on the project, including restrictions related to construction in or near fish habitat and additional consultation with Aboriginal groups, among other things. Woodfibre LNG, backed by Indonesian billionaire Sukanto Tanoto's RGE Group, hopes to build its LNG export terminal outside the city of Squamish, north of Vancouver. The company has not yet made a final investment decision on the project.
  • March 24, 2016 – TransCanada Corporation is working with JPMorgan Chase & Co. to find buyers for more than $7 billion in assets to help finance its acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group Inc., people with knowledge of the matter said. Assets for sale include a portfolio of U.S. Northeast merchant power plants and a minority stake in TransCanada's Mexican natural gas pipeline business. The value of the combined assets is estimated to be $7.1 billion, according to Moody's Investors Service.


  • March 11, 2016 – Williams Partners L.P. has reached an agreement with Shell Offshore Inc. and Nexen Petroleum Offshore U.S.A. Inc. to provide deepwater gas gathering services to the Appomattox development, located 80 miles offshore from the nearest shoreline in Louisiana, in approximately 7,200 feet of water. Shell is 79 per cent owner in the Appomattox development and is the operator; Nexen is 21 per cent owner.

Alternative / Green

  • March 4, 2016 – Working together with the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Canada's 10 provinces accepted the concept of putting a price on carbon but agreed the specific details could be finalized at a later date. The mechanisms for pricing carbon would take into account each province's specific circumstances.
  • March 10, 2016 – The United States and Canada have agreed on joint steps to fight climate change, including cutting methane emissions from existing oil and gas industry sources and signing the Paris climate deal as soon as possible. Under the agreement, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will begin developing regulations for methane emissions from existing oil and gas sources immediately and "will move as expeditiously as possible to complete this process." Environment Canada "intends to publish an initial phase of proposed regulations by early 2017," and put in place national regulations in collaboration with provinces, territories, and indigenous groups.
  • March 11, 2016 – Alberta Energy Minister Margaret McCuaig-Boyd and the British High Commissioner to Canada Howard Drake have signed a UK-Alberta Low Carbon Innovation and Growth Framework. Building on already strong links, the framework will facilitate partnerships between Alberta and UK stakeholders that will: drive economic development, diversification, innovation and job creation; enhance collaboration on low carbon technology and innovation; and further develop UK-Alberta dialogues on energy and environmental policy and regulation.

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