Status, evolution, revenue, employment, production forecasts, emissions and implications for emissions reduction

Instead of decreasing, Canada’s oil and gas sector is increasing production, which alone will cause Canada to exceed its Paris Agreement and Bill C-12 “net zero” targets, this new report by veteran earth scientist David Hughes finds.

Not only is production increasing, the sector no longer contributes like it once did to government revenues in Canada, and jobs are down by more than 50,000 from their 2014 peak and are unlikely to return—even with production at record highs, the report shows.

Hughes says a stark change in direction is urgently needed if Canada is to meet its emissions targets, including a rethink of oil and gas exports and the development of a plan for a future that includes a just transition for workers. He finds that planned expansions of the TMX and Line 3 pipelines are not needed because Canada already has sufficient pipeline capacity to transport the amount of oil the Canada Energy Regulator is projecting for export through 2050. He concludes that continuing on the country’s current path for the oil and gas sector means meeting Canada’s emissions-reduction targets is impossible. 

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Author: David Hughes

J. David Hughes is an earth scientist who has studied the energy resources of Canada and the US for more than four decades, including 32 years with the Geological Survey of Canada (GSC) as a scientist and research manager.