Crescent Point Energy Corporation is an oil and gas exploration and development company based in Calgary, Alberta. The firm was established in 2001, and following numerous mergers and acquisitions, it has grown into one of the largest light and medium crude oil producers in Canada today. It is Saskatchewan’s largest oil producer and has been “by far the most active driller in the country for the past several years.”16 Crescent Point also exploits natural gas liquids and natural gas, totalling roughly 30 per cent of its 2017 production levels.17
With a strategic focus on developing its properties long-term and extensively increasing its overall production, Crescent Point’s business plan ensures that the company will continue to be a major emitter in Canada’s extractive sector. This places its strategy at odds with Canada’s Paris Agreement commitments that require Canadian fossil fuel industries to substantially limit their greenhouse gas emissions.18 Crescent Point is also one of the most politically engaged fossil fuel companies, and it has spoken out against the mild regulations that have been proposed or applied to mitigate climate change. In Saskatchewan it lists 50 in-house lobbyists, including the company’s CEO.19
Head office: Calgary, Alberta20
Countries of operation: Canada and the US
Revenue: C$3.3 billion 21
Assets: C$16 billion 22
Reserves: 446,903,000 oil bbl, 280,312 gas MMcf 23
Production: oil, natural gas liquids and oil sands: 135,480 bbl/d; natural gas: 81.629 MMcf/d; total 149,085 boe/d24
Employees: 1,085 25
Memberships: Explorers and Producers Association of Canada26
Crescent Point was formed in 2001 as a junior oil exploration and production company. The company converted to a trust in 2003 after merging with the oil company Tappit Resources Ltd. In 2009 the company converted back to a corporation from an income trust.1 Crescent Point continued to complete a series of acquisitions, ramping up its overall production substantially throughout the decade. Some of its largest acquisitions from the period include Mission Oil and Gas in 2007, and Legacy Oil and Gas in 2015.2
The majority of Crescent Point’s production lies within the Williston Basin in North Dakota and southeastern Saskatchewan. It holds other assets in the Uinta Basin in Utah and the Shaunavon and Viking plays in southwestern Saskatchewan. It also holds assets in the Duvernay shale play in central Alberta.4 Its operations include the extraction and production of crude oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids.[/efn_note]
|Franklin Resources Inc.||US||5.28|
|Power Corporation of Canada||CA||3.32|
|Bank of Nova Scotia||CA||3.22|
|Vanguard Group Inc.||US||2.74|
|Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce||CA||2.70|
|Royal Bank of Canada||CA||2.20|
|Bank of Montreal||CA||2.19|
|Connor, Clark & Lunn Financial Group Ltd.||CA||1.34|
|Lincluden Investment Management Ltd.||CA||1.28|
|Canoe Financial LP||CA||1.26|
|Scheer, Rowlett & Associates Investment Management Ltd.||CA||1.11|
Includes all shareholdings of 1% and greater. Source: Orbis Database, October 2018.
Crescent Point’s business plan has largely involved the rampant acquisition of firms and assets in some of North America’s most prolific crude oil and natural gas regions. In the year 2006 alone, the company carried out 10 acquisitions, increasing its total daily production levels by 70 per cent.5 Between the years 2012 and 2016, another 15 acquisitions took place—the most of any oil exporter or producer throughout North America.6 Dubbed “North America’s busiest oil dealmaker,” Crescent Point’s business strategy now hinges on the successful exploitation of a 12-year drilling inventory of its Saskatchewan and Utah reserves.7 However, this production-focused business plan puts Crescent Point at odds with federal and provincial climate strategies, like carbon taxation, seeking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The company has actively spoken out against minimal climate regulations favoured by Canadian oil corporations: in 2017 the company withdrew its membership from the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, noting CAPP’s support for limited carbon taxation in Saskatchewan as a key reason for its departure.8 Crescent Point is the province’s largest oil producer.9 The firm’s departure from CAPP has been described as a “backwards-looking” approach to climate policy.10
Nevertheless, Crescent Point suggests that it intends to conduct business “in a manner that minimizes impact on the air, land and water surrounding our operations.”11 At present, this includes an in-house climate change fund that targets programs to remediate environmental damage, reduce emissions in its operations and integrate solar energy generation throughout some of its Canadian office locations. Overall, these measures seem to fit with the company’s self-serving approach to mitigating its operational impacts on climate change; as Crescent Point’s corporate philosophy states, we “support climate change policies and governments as they study solutions that make sense locally. We will continue working toward pragmatic emissions reduction frameworks that focus on innovation and investment in technology.”12
In August 2016 a Crescent Point pipeline leaked roughly 630 barrels of a mix of oil and water into a farmer’s field north of Swift Current, Saskatchewan. According to the firm’s chief operating officer, the pipeline had likely been leaking for two days when noticed by employees of a different energy company doing work in the area, indicating that the flow monitoring equipment installed in the pipeline failed to detect the leak.13
The politics of climate change
Considering so many of its assets are located in Saskatchewan, it is not surprising that Crescent Point has been a long-time supporter of the pro-industry Saskatchewan Party, led by Brad Wall from 2004 until his retirement in 2018. Wall, an outspoken critic of climate policies that target emissions reductions for the oil and gas sector, submitted a reference case in 2018 to the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal to determine the legality of the federally imposed carbon tax, suggesting that carbon emissions should fall under provincial rather than federal legislation.14 Crescent Point’s annual donations to Wall’s party topped $133,000 between 2007 and 2016.15
To learn more more about Crescent Point Energy at LittleSis.org
The intent of the Corporate Mapping Project database is to engage Canadians in a conversation about the role of the fossil fuel sector in our democracy, by “mapping” how power and influence play out in the oil, gas and coal industries of BC, Alberta and Saskatchewan.
“Top 100 Canadian Companies by Production,” Oilweek, June 2018, https://s3.ca-central-1.amazonaws.com/media.jwnenergy/reports/Oilweek_Top+100+2018_final.pdf.