Infrastructure is the big issue this election for the oilpatch, says PSAC CEO

Gary Mar is focusing on infrastructure as the big issue for the oilpatch in this election.Image: Brian Zinchuk, Pipeline News

Regina — Gary Mar, president and CEO of the Petroleum Services, says infrastructure is the key issue for the oilpatch in this upcoming federal election. He spoke to Pipeline News at the SIMSA Oil and Gas Supply Chain Forum in Regina on Oct. 3.

“I think the core issue is the ability to get infrastructure completed in this country. It appears this is a challenging policy issue for the current federal government. And it does not appear that they are in any hurry to get anything done. That, to me, is a core issue for the oil and gas business,” Mar said.

“We need pipelines. We need pipelines that can carry oil to tidewater. We need pipelines that can carry natural gas to foreign markets. We’re talking about infrastructure that will allow for the building of LNG (liquefied natural gas) facilities. We’re talking about moving natural gas to a place like Saguenay, Quebec. In Quebec they have a project there called Energie Saguenay, which would be a $15 billion project that would take natural gas from Western Canada in a 36-inch pipeline, liquefy it, and take it to foreign markets, out of Quebec.”

He said Quebec’s premier has talked about his support for the project, as well as the province’s energy minister. “They are very [supportive] of Western Canadian natural gas going out through Saguenay, Quebec.”

But not oil?

“Not yet,” Mar said.

Asked about the recently-proposed Canadian Prosperity Pipeline, which would be a new pipe from Hardisty, Alta., to Saint John, N.B., Mar said, “From my perspective, this is very positive. You’ve got a premier in New Brunswick, Premier Higgs, who has talked about his support for an Energy East-type of project. And the need for it has been highlighted by recent events in Saudi Arabia. About 10 per cent of the world’s oil comes from Saudi Arabia, and 5.7 per cent of that was damaged in a recent drone attack.

“It highlights the need for supporting the concept that Canadians should be buying Canadian energy.”

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