As debate continues to rage over pipelines for Alberta’s oil, this report analyzes how the oil sands industry, in the early years of the mature phase of its business lifecycle, is producing more bitumen with less capital and fewer jobs. 

“Since the 2014 oil price crash, advancements in extractive technologies and modular facility design have enabled leading oil sands producers to increase production with less capital and fewer workers,” says Ian Hussey, author of the report.

The report analyzes trends in Canadian oil production, oil and gas employment, capital spending, operational spending, labour productivity, and advancements in extractive technologies and modular facility design.

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Author: Ian Hussey

Ian Hussey is a research manager at Parkland Institute. He is also a steering committee member and the Alberta research manager for the SSHRCC-funded Corporate Mapping Project. Before joining Parkland Institute, Ian worked for several international development organizations, including as the co-founder and executive director of the Canadian Fair Trade Network. Ian holds BA Honours degrees in Sociology and in English from Acadia University, an MA in Sociology from the University of Victoria, and his PhD courses and exams at York University focused on the sociology of colonialism and on political economy. His writing has appeared in the Globe and Mail, New Political Economy, Edmonton Journal, National Observer, and The Tyee.