Alberta eyes help for energy industry in Canadian crude rout

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley. Image: Government of Alberta

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley said the province may soon announce more plans to help the local energy industry reap more value from its resources amid a slump in Canadian crude prices.

“We will have more to say in the weeks to come around other things that we can do to provide more value-added opportunities here in Alberta” to help ease the province’s bottlenecks in crude pipelines and rail shipping, Notley said in response to questions at a press conference in Edmonton.

Alberta’s government previously pledged C$1 billion ($772 million) to support construction of partial upgraders that lighten oilsands bitumen and help it flow through pipelines. The province also is providing C$500 million in royalty credits to spur construction of more plants to turn oil and gas into plastics, fabrics and fertilizers.

Western Canada Select’s discount to West Texas Intermediate crude widened to $47 a barrel on Tuesday, the widest on record in Bloomberg data stretching back to 2008. The price of WCS slid 5.2 percent to $28.23 a barrel, the lowest since November 2016.

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