Oil Sands (Link Here)
Economic Impacts of Staged Development of Oil Sands Projects in Alberta (2010-2035)
The Canadian Energy Research Institute (CERI) has completed a study of the impact of developing Alberta’s oil sands in a staged manner according to the capacity and in-service date of existing and proposed pipelines. CERI estimated the amount of capital and operating expenditures that will be required to enable these upstream projects (both existing and proposed). CERI then used a standard economic model to estimate the impact this spending will have on employment and Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
The report shows that in 2010 80,000 U.S. jobs were supported by existing oil sands projects but that without additional pipeline capacity, substantial future benefits will be lost. In particular, Keystone XL pipeline alone could support close to 85,000 U.S. jobs in 2020. Without any pipeline constraints, oil sands development could support 600,000 U.S. jobs by 2035.
Summary of CERI's "Economic Impacts of Staged Development of Oil Sands Projects in Albert (2010-2035)"
Size: 144 KB | Date: July 15, 2011 | License: Free
Complete Report: Economic Impacts of Staged Development of Oil Sands Projects in Alberta (2010-2035)
Size: 1.4 MB | Date: June 2011 | License: Free
Fact Sheet: Oil from Canada
The United States imports 9 million barrels of oil a day to help meet its energy needs. Canada is the largest supplier of oil to the U.S., providing nearly 2 million barrels a day – more than 20 percent of U.S. imports.
Fact Sheet: Oil from Canada
Size: 45 KB | Date: June 3, 2011 | License: Free
Advanced technologies developed over many years are used to produce oil from oil sands. The vast resources of the Canadian oil sands will play a crucial role in enhancing our nation’s energy security, serving as a bridge to a future economy increasingly powered by new energy sources.
Canadian Oil Sands
Size: 1.3 MB | Date: May 31, 2011 | License: Free
Energy Tomorrow Blog - Canadian Oil Sands More Important Than Ever (December 8, 2010)
The administration's decision to ban oil and natural gas development in the Atlantic, Pacific and the eastern Gulf of Mexico for the next seven years exacerbates an ongoing problem for the United States: Despite calls for energy independence, the nation could become more reliant on oil from other countries.
Fortunately, one of the world's foremost oil producing countries is right next door. In recent years, Canada has become the largest supplier of oil to the United States. An estimated 2 million barrels of Canadian oil comes over the U.S. border every day, and about half of it is derived from Canada's abundant oil sands. More...
Oil Sands, Greenhouse Gases, and U.S. Oil Supply: Getting the Numbers Right
The objective of this report is to provide an independent perspective on the life-cycle GHG emissions of oil sands compared with other crudes; on the evolving discipline of estimating life-cycle GHG emissions, particularly for oil sands; and on the growing trend of using life-cycle GHG analysis in policy. These policies have the potential to affect the market for Canadian oil sands and other sources of carbon-intensive crude oil.
Oil Sands, Greenhouse Gases, and U.S. Oil Supply
Size: 901 KB | Date: September 2010 | License: Free
The Canadian Oil Sands: Energy Security vs. Climate Change
The Council on Foreign Relations’ (CFR) recent report The Canadian Oil Sands: Energy Security vs. Climate Change explores the tensions between energy security and climate change surrounding the Canadian oil sands and provides policy recommendations to address these two interests. The study urges U.S. policymakers to “resist the misuse of other U.S. environmental regulations to constrain oil sands.” It notes that “ill-conceived regulation could undermine U.S. and Canadian climate and security goals.” For more information on this study, see CFR’s overview or download the study here (May 2009).
Growth in Canadian Oil Sands: Finding a New Balance
Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA’s) new report Growth in Canadian Oil Sands: Finding a New Balance was designed as a balanced study (participants include Canadian government, oil companies and NGOs) to address various aspects associated with oil sands development and processing. For information on this study, see CERA's press release titled, Oil Sands Move from the “Fringe to Center” of Energy Supply (May 18, 2009).
Recovering Oil Sands
Two different methods are used to produce oil from the oil sands – surface mining and in-situ – or producing in place. Today, a majority of the oil derived from oil sands is obtained via surface mining, although only about 20 percent of all oil sand resources are recoverable through this method.
The remaining 80 percent of oil sands resources are recoverable through in-situ processing. This method is employed when the bitumen deposits are further underground. Most in-situ operations use steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD). This involves pumping steam underground through a horizontal well to liquefy the bitumen and pump it to the surface. Current investments in advanced technology will make this method of extraction more widely used in the years to come.
To learn more about Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) and oil sands, see the SAGD and Oil Sands Video.
You can also view the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers video "Canada's Oil Sands: Come See for Yourself."
The oil and natural gas industry remains committed to being a reliable and environmentally-responsible provider of the energy needed to power our economy. Canadian and U.S. companies are making the necessary investments to meet stringent environmental and other regulatory requirements to produce and process oil sands.
- The extraction and processing of oil sands, like all minerals development, requires energy, which results in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. However, in a full lifecycle analysis, GHG emissions from the extraction, processing and use of oil sands oil is comparable to other heavy crude oil, like Venezuelan or Mexican crudes processed in the U.S. (see chart from CERA, 2009 analysis).
- Technological advancements have cut per-barrel GHG emissions from oil sands production by 29 percent compared to 1990 levels, according to the Canadian government.
- Using oil sands as a feedstock does not affect the quality or the tailpipe GHG emissions of the refined products. In fact, gasoline and other fuels made from oil sands already are being used in the United States. The vast investments refiners and pipeline operators are making to increase capacity and flexibility to process oil sands includes all the necessary equipment to make products that meet all the required specifications.
The Canadian oil and gas industry is working in conjunction with the Canadian federal and Albertan provincial governments to reduce GHG emissions through accelerated research and development of carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology and energy efficiency improvements. For more information regarding how the Canadian government and oil and gas industry are addressing environmental issues associated with oil sands development, visit the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP).
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