WEC Canada convenes two major forums

“Transformations Across the Energy Sector: Past, Present and Future” was the theme for the combined 2014 Canadian Energy Summit (24–25 June) and the WEC’s North America Region Energy Forum (26 June), organised by the Energy Council of Canada, the WEC Canadian member committee.

The Honourable Diana McQueen, Minister of Energy, Government of Alberta, at the Canadian Energy Summit

Over 125 representatives from member and non-member organisations in Canada, the US, and Mexico attended the back-to-back events in Calgary, Alberta, Canada’s energy capital.

The opening reception for the Summit featured a welcome address by Diana McQueen, Alberta’s Minister of Energy (pictured).  Ms McQueen provided highlights on Alberta’s Resource Management System for development of the oil sands and the importance of gaining access to new markets for Alberta’s oil and gas production.

The Summit program on June 25 was opened by Ms Kelly Block, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources Canada (NRCan). The importance of market access and NRCan’s responsible resource development policy were highlighted in her remarks.

Rich Coleman, British Columbia’s Deputy Premier and Minister of Natural Gas, described the implementation of the province’s aggressive strategy to encourage and support the development of the emerging LNG industry.

Gabriel Heller Green, Assistant Secretary for Oil and Gas Councils and Committees, Energy Secretariat of Mexico, provided an update on Mexico’s extensive reforms of the electricity sector and oil and gas sector.

At the WEC North America Regional Forum (from left): Anthony Haines, President and CEO, Toronto Hydro & Chair, Canadian Electricity Association; Barry Worthington, Executive Director, United States Energy Association; Francisco Barnes, Commissioner, Mexico National Energy Commission; David Manning, Alberta Representative, Canadian Embassy, Washington DC

An overview of the latest energy developments in the United States was presented by Barry Worthington (pictured, second from left), Executive Director of the United States Energy Association (USEA), the WEC’s US member committee.

Three general sessions provided an overview of the evolving energy landscape from the perspective of the World Energy Council, presented by Ms Marie-José Nadeau, WEC Chair; the transformations in the North American energy sector; and a report on public attitudes regarding resource development projects presented by Greg Lyle of Innovative Research Group.

Sessions delved into the transformations underway in the energy sector under four thematic tracks: oil and gas, electricity, energy policy and energy overview, and perspectives from governments.

•           Three sessions on oil and gas covered topics in recent developments in energy infrastructure, the opportunities and market situation for the development of LNG facilities and export markets, and perspectives on oil and gas developments in Canada, the United States and Mexico.

•           Transformations involved in the electricity sector were covered under two main headings – technological transformations and changes in the electricity market in response to new technological developments.

•           Two initiatives in the development of energy policy were discussed: an update on the creation of a Canadian energy strategy; and, the latest thinking on finding ways to earn public support for energy development projects, also known as securing social licence.

•           Perspectives on energy transformations in Canada, the United States, and Mexico were offered during an ‘’energy conversation’’ following the joint Summit and Forum dinner on June 25.  Speakers were Serge Dupont, Deputy Minister, Natural Resources Canada, Gabriel Heller Green, Assistant Secretary for Oil and Gas Councils and Committees, Energy Secretariat of Mexico, and Barry Worthington, Executive Director, United States Energy Association.

The Energy Council’s goals of fostering energy dialogue on important current issues related to the transformations underway in the energy sector in North America were successfully fulfilled during the Summit and Forum.

Full details on the program, moderators and speakers can be found at www.energy.ca