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ALDP News

"Opinion: Ask candidates how to clean up Alberta's orphaned wells" by Trevor W. Harrison and David Cooper. Edmonton Journal, April 5 2019.

 

Read the full op-ed here.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

MEDIA CONTACT:

Regan Boychuk, Alberta Liabilities Disclosure Project

reganboychuk@gmail.com : 403-479-8637

 

New coalition calls on party leaders for transparency on true costs of well cleanup

New data, obtained through FOIP, shows oil and gas well reclamation will cost significantly more than previously reported to the public

 

April 8, 2019 (CALGARY) — A new coalition of former regulators, researchers, and landowners impacted by aging oil and gas wells launched the Alberta Liabilities Disclosure Project (ALDP) today. The coalition released new data, obtained through FOIP requests from the Alberta Energy Regulator, that shows the cost of cleaning up Alberta’s 300,000+ unreclaimed oil and gas wells will be between $40 and 70 billion — 2 to 3.5 times higher than the $18.5 billion they have told Albertans.

 

Albertans are left wondering: who is going to pay for this, and by when? So today, the coalition is calling on all political parties to commit, if elected, to release independently verified estimates of Alberta’s real environmental liabilities as a first step towards solutions that will clean up the land while building a stronger economy.

 

“For decades, we've looked the other way as the number of aging oil and gas wells threatening farm lands and drinking water continues to grow. The Alberta Energy Regulator hasn’t come clean on how much it will actually cost to deal with this mess, but our new data raises the floor of the debate. We need the government to tell Albertans the truth, so we can make a plan to deal with this ticking time bomb,” says Regan Boychuk, lead researcher, ALDP member, and Reclaim Alberta campaigner.

 

These new estimates build a new floor under the debate of oilfield cleanup costs, and raise the bar for proposed solutions. Only about $200 million is currently being held by the province as a deposit to pay for the cleanup of hundreds of thousands of oil and gas wells — less than 0.3% of the cost to clean up those wells.

 

When Albertans are at risk of being on the hook for an oil well cleanup bill $22 to 51 billion more than the publicly reported estimates, that’s a massive problem. And if we apply this kind of increase to the cleanup costs of all industry infrastructure — including tailing ponds, mines, and pipelines — the problem becomes even more mind-boggling.

 

“Many landowners like me are impacted terribly by flawed processes that don’t serve to keep us or our land safe,” says Mark Dorin, President of Dorin Land and Oilfield Management. “All we want is to be safe on our land, and to be fairly compensated for our real and actual losses as required by the ‘polluter pays’ principle, embedded in provincial and federal law.”

 

Although the industry is legally required to clean up after itself, many companies are walking away from their responsibilities with few consequences. Meanwhile, aging oil, gas, and bitumen infrastructure is leaking methane and dangerous substances into our air and groundwater, threatening farms and communities, and leaving behind hefty cleanup bills that could be passed on to all Albertans in coming years.

 

“The oil and gas industry is legally obligated to fund the cleanup of its environmental liabilities. But the industry isn’t setting aside anywhere near enough money to do it, which means the public will be left on the hook for the costs. It’s long overdue that government responsibly assess the real costs of cleanup, make this public and ensure the industry pays for it,” says Greg Rogers, environmental risk and liability consultant.

 

For more information and a list of endorsing organizations, visit ALDPcoalition.com.

 

COALITION SUPPORTERS:

Alberta Wilderness Association

Climate Justice Edmonton

The Council of Canadians

David J. Cooper (Emeritus Professor of Accounting, University of Alberta)

Dr. David Swann (Retired Member of Legislative Assembly of Alberta and former Leader of the Alberta Opposition)

Emily Eaton (Associate Professor of Geography, University of Regina)

Greg Rogers (Environmental Risk and Liability Consultant, Eratosthenes - Accounting for Climate Change)

Gordon Laxer (Founding Director of the Parkland Institute)

Keepers of the Athabasca

Mark Dorin (Dorin Land and Oilfield Management Inc.)

Progress Alberta

Regan Boychuk (independent researcher, Reclaim Alberta)

Robert Ascah (Director of the University of Alberta Institute for Public Economics; Program Chair of the Economics Society of Northern Alberta)

Thomas Schneider (Associate Professor of Accounting, Ryerson University)

Vern Bretin (Alberta farmer and landowner)

 

BACKGROUND

 

  • For decades, regulators have watched liabilities be transferred to smaller and smaller companies without the resources to honour their cleanup obligations.

  • The enforcement of reclamation standards have been continually eroded, raising the potential of taxpayer liability for proper compensation of landowners for damaged land.

  • Regulatory programs collect only a fraction of a percent of cleanup costs as security, leaving significant risk to the public purse. At the moment, only $1.6 billion is being held as security for a cleanup publicly estimated at $58 billion — which is just 2.7% of the total cost.

  • Industry funds cleanup through current revenue, which means that, when times are tough, clean up work grinds to a halt and future clean up is left in doubt.

  • The Supreme Court’s decision in the Redwater Energy case reaffirmed that regulators have the ability to force clean up; but regulators will need to use that longstanding power to prevent the public from being left with cleanup costs.

  • Landowners like Mark Dorin and his mother have had their family’s health and safety compromised by old wells near their homes and on their land. Watch them tell their story here: https://youtu.be/cM3X9G1Zey8.

 

THE NUMBERS

Right now in Alberta, there are 300,000 conventional oil and gas wells, 400,000 kilometres of pipelines, over 1.4 trillions of litres of fluid waste held in tailings ponds, and more. As this infrastructure ages and breaks down, it can leak toxins into the surrounding air, land, and water.

 

Number of unreclaimed oil and gas wells: over 300,000

AER estimate of oil and gas well cleanup: $18.46 billion

ALDP estimate of oil and gas well cleanup: $40 to 70 billion

Amount held as security deposits against oil and gas well cleanup: ~$200 million

"Opinion: Ask candidates how to clean up Alberta's orphaned wells" by Trevor W. Harrison and David Cooper. Edmonton Journal, April 5 2019.

 

Read the full op-ed here.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

MEDIA CONTACT:

Regan Boychuk, Alberta Liabilities Disclosure Project

reganboychuk@gmail.com : 403-479-8637

 

New coalition calls on party leaders for transparency on true costs of well cleanup

New data, obtained through FOIP, shows oil and gas well reclamation will cost significantly more than previously reported to the public

 

April 8, 2019 (CALGARY) — A new coalition of former regulators, researchers, and landowners impacted by aging oil and gas wells launched the Alberta Liabilities Disclosure Project (ALDP) today. The coalition released new data, obtained through FOIP requests from the Alberta Energy Regulator, that shows the cost of cleaning up Alberta’s 300,000+ unreclaimed oil and gas wells will be between $40 and 70 billion — 2 to 3.5 times higher than the $18.5 billion they have told Albertans.

 

Albertans are left wondering: who is going to pay for this, and by when? So today, the coalition is calling on all political parties to commit, if elected, to release independently verified estimates of Alberta’s real environmental liabilities as a first step towards solutions that will clean up the land while building a stronger economy.

 

“For decades, we've looked the other way as the number of aging oil and gas wells threatening farm lands and drinking water continues to grow. The Alberta Energy Regulator hasn’t come clean on how much it will actually cost to deal with this mess, but our new data raises the floor of the debate. We need the government to tell Albertans the truth, so we can make a plan to deal with this ticking time bomb,” says Regan Boychuk, lead researcher, ALDP member, and Reclaim Alberta campaigner.

 

These new estimates build a new floor under the debate of oilfield cleanup costs, and raise the bar for proposed solutions. Only about $200 million is currently being held by the province as a deposit to pay for the cleanup of hundreds of thousands of oil and gas wells — less than 0.3% of the cost to clean up those wells.

 

When Albertans are at risk of being on the hook for an oil well cleanup bill $22 to 51 billion more than the publicly reported estimates, that’s a massive problem. And if we apply this kind of increase to the cleanup costs of all industry infrastructure — including tailing ponds, mines, and pipelines — the problem becomes even more mind-boggling.

 

“Many landowners like me are impacted terribly by flawed processes that don’t serve to keep us or our land safe,” says Mark Dorin, President of Dorin Land and Oilfield Management. “All we want is to be safe on our land, and to be fairly compensated for our real and actual losses as required by the ‘polluter pays’ principle, embedded in provincial and federal law.”

 

Although the industry is legally required to clean up after itself, many companies are walking away from their responsibilities with few consequences. Meanwhile, aging oil, gas, and bitumen infrastructure is leaking methane and dangerous substances into our air and groundwater, threatening farms and communities, and leaving behind hefty cleanup bills that could be passed on to all Albertans in coming years.

 

“The oil and gas industry is legally obligated to fund the cleanup of its environmental liabilities. But the industry isn’t setting aside anywhere near enough money to do it, which means the public will be left on the hook for the costs. It’s long overdue that government responsibly assess the real costs of cleanup, make this public and ensure the industry pays for it,” says Greg Rogers, environmental risk and liability consultant.

 

For more information and a list of endorsing organizations, visit ALDPcoalition.com.

 

COALITION SUPPORTERS:

Alberta Wilderness Association

Climate Justice Edmonton

The Council of Canadians

David J. Cooper (Emeritus Professor of Accounting, University of Alberta)

Dr. David Swann (Retired Member of Legislative Assembly of Alberta and former Leader of the Alberta Opposition)

Emily Eaton (Associate Professor of Geography, University of Regina)

Greg Rogers (Environmental Risk and Liability Consultant, Eratosthenes - Accounting for Climate Change)

Gordon Laxer (Founding Director of the Parkland Institute)

Keepers of the Athabasca

Mark Dorin (Dorin Land and Oilfield Management Inc.)

Progress Alberta

Regan Boychuk (independent researcher, Reclaim Alberta)

Robert Ascah (Director of the University of Alberta Institute for Public Economics; Program Chair of the Economics Society of Northern Alberta)

Thomas Schneider (Associate Professor of Accounting, Ryerson University)

Vern Bretin (Alberta farmer and landowner)

 

BACKGROUND

 

  • For decades, regulators have watched liabilities be transferred to smaller and smaller companies without the resources to honour their cleanup obligations.

  • The enforcement of reclamation standards have been continually eroded, raising the potential of taxpayer liability for proper compensation of landowners for damaged land.

  • Regulatory programs collect only a fraction of a percent of cleanup costs as security, leaving significant risk to the public purse. At the moment, only $1.6 billion is being held as security for a cleanup publicly estimated at $58 billion — which is just 2.7% of the total cost.

  • Industry funds cleanup through current revenue, which means that, when times are tough, clean up work grinds to a halt and future clean up is left in doubt.

  • The Supreme Court’s decision in the Redwater Energy case reaffirmed that regulators have the ability to force clean up; but regulators will need to use that longstanding power to prevent the public from being left with cleanup costs.

  • Landowners like Mark Dorin and his mother have had their family’s health and safety compromised by old wells near their homes and on their land. Watch them tell their story here: https://youtu.be/cM3X9G1Zey8.

 

THE NUMBERS

Right now in Alberta, there are 300,000 conventional oil and gas wells, 400,000 kilometres of pipelines, over 1.4 trillions of litres of fluid waste held in tailings ponds, and more. As this infrastructure ages and breaks down, it can leak toxins into the surrounding air, land, and water.

 

Number of unreclaimed oil and gas wells: over 300,000

AER estimate of oil and gas well cleanup: $18.46 billion

ALDP estimate of oil and gas well cleanup: $40 to 70 billion

Amount held as security deposits against oil and gas well cleanup: ~$200 million

"Human lives depend on it": Old wells harming landowners in Didsbury

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

MEDIA CONTACT:

Regan Boychuk, Alberta Liabilities Disclosure Project

reganboychuk@gmail.com : 403-479-8637

 

New coalition calls on party leaders for transparency on true costs of well cleanup

New data, obtained through FOIP, shows oil and gas well reclamation will cost significantly more than previously reported to the public

 

April 8, 2019 (CALGARY) — A new coalition of former regulators, researchers, and landowners impacted by aging oil and gas wells launched the Alberta Liabilities Disclosure Project (ALDP) today. The coalition released new data, obtained through FOIP requests from the Alberta Energy Regulator, that shows the cost of cleaning up Alberta’s 300,000+ unreclaimed oil and gas wells will be between $40 and 70 billion — 2 to 3.5 times higher than the $18.5 billion they have told Albertans.

 

Albertans are left wondering: who is going to pay for this, and by when? So today, the coalition is calling on all political parties to commit, if elected, to release independently verified estimates of Alberta’s real environmental liabilities as a first step towards solutions that will clean up the land while building a stronger economy.

 

“For decades, we've looked the other way as the number of aging oil and gas wells threatening farm lands and drinking water continues to grow. The Alberta Energy Regulator hasn’t come clean on how much it will actually cost to deal with this mess, but our new data raises the floor of the debate. We need the government to tell Albertans the truth, so we can make a plan to deal with this ticking time bomb,” says Regan Boychuk, lead researcher, ALDP member, and Reclaim Alberta campaigner.

 

These new estimates build a new floor under the debate of oilfield cleanup costs, and raise the bar for proposed solutions. Only about $200 million is currently being held by the province as a deposit to pay for the cleanup of hundreds of thousands of oil and gas wells — less than 0.3% of the cost to clean up those wells.

 

When Albertans are at risk of being on the hook for an oil well cleanup bill $22 to 51 billion more than the publicly reported estimates, that’s a massive problem. And if we apply this kind of increase to the cleanup costs of all industry infrastructure — including tailing ponds, mines, and pipelines — the problem becomes even more mind-boggling.

 

“Many landowners like me are impacted terribly by flawed processes that don’t serve to keep us or our land safe,” says Mark Dorin, President of Dorin Land and Oilfield Management. “All we want is to be safe on our land, and to be fairly compensated for our real and actual losses as required by the ‘polluter pays’ principle, embedded in provincial and federal law.”

 

Although the industry is legally required to clean up after itself, many companies are walking away from their responsibilities with few consequences. Meanwhile, aging oil, gas, and bitumen infrastructure is leaking methane and dangerous substances into our air and groundwater, threatening farms and communities, and leaving behind hefty cleanup bills that could be passed on to all Albertans in coming years.

 

“The oil and gas industry is legally obligated to fund the cleanup of its environmental liabilities. But the industry isn’t setting aside anywhere near enough money to do it, which means the public will be left on the hook for the costs. It’s long overdue that government responsibly assess the real costs of cleanup, make this public and ensure the industry pays for it,” says Greg Rogers, environmental risk and liability consultant.

 

For more information and a list of endorsing organizations, visit ALDPcoalition.com.

 

COALITION SUPPORTERS:

Alberta Wilderness Association

Climate Justice Edmonton

The Council of Canadians

David J. Cooper (Emeritus Professor of Accounting, University of Alberta)

Dr. David Swann (Retired Member of Legislative Assembly of Alberta and former Leader of the Alberta Opposition)

Emily Eaton (Associate Professor of Geography, University of Regina)

Greg Rogers (Environmental Risk and Liability Consultant, Eratosthenes - Accounting for Climate Change)

Gordon Laxer (Founding Director of the Parkland Institute)

Keepers of the Athabasca

Mark Dorin (Dorin Land and Oilfield Management Inc.)

Progress Alberta

Regan Boychuk (independent researcher, Reclaim Alberta)

Robert Ascah (Director of the University of Alberta Institute for Public Economics; Program Chair of the Economics Society of Northern Alberta)

Thomas Schneider (Associate Professor of Accounting, Ryerson University)

Vern Bretin (Alberta farmer and landowner)

 

BACKGROUND

 

  • For decades, regulators have watched liabilities be transferred to smaller and smaller companies without the resources to honour their cleanup obligations.

  • The enforcement of reclamation standards have been continually eroded, raising the potential of taxpayer liability for proper compensation of landowners for damaged land.

  • Regulatory programs collect only a fraction of a percent of cleanup costs as security, leaving significant risk to the public purse. At the moment, only $1.6 billion is being held as security for a cleanup publicly estimated at $58 billion — which is just 2.7% of the total cost.

  • Industry funds cleanup through current revenue, which means that, when times are tough, clean up work grinds to a halt and future clean up is left in doubt.

  • The Supreme Court’s decision in the Redwater Energy case reaffirmed that regulators have the ability to force clean up; but regulators will need to use that longstanding power to prevent the public from being left with cleanup costs.

  • Landowners like Mark Dorin and his mother have had their family’s health and safety compromised by old wells near their homes and on their land. Watch them tell their story here: https://youtu.be/cM3X9G1Zey8.

 

THE NUMBERS

Right now in Alberta, there are 300,000 conventional oil and gas wells, 400,000 kilometres of pipelines, over 1.4 trillions of litres of fluid waste held in tailings ponds, and more. As this infrastructure ages and breaks down, it can leak toxins into the surrounding air, land, and water.

 

Number of unreclaimed oil and gas wells: over 300,000

AER estimate of oil and gas well cleanup: $18.46 billion

ALDP estimate of oil and gas well cleanup: $40 to 70 billion

Amount held as security deposits against oil and gas well cleanup: ~$200 million

"Opinion: Ask candidates how to clean up Alberta's orphaned wells" by Trevor W. Harrison and David Cooper. Edmonton Journal, April 5 2019.

 

Read the full op-ed here.

"Regulator projects Alberta’s inactive well problem will double in size by 2030, documents reveal" by Sharon J Riley. The Narwhal, April 8 2019.

Read full article here.

"‘Ticking time bomb:’ Alberta group wants aging oil wells to be election issue" by Bill Graveland. Canadian Press, April 8 2019.

Read full article here.

"Experts say Alberta must address oil and gas well cleanup that could cost billions: ‘This is a ticking time bomb’" by Emma Mcintosh. The Star Calgary, April 9 2019.

Read full article here.

ALDP News

Public Letter to Alberta Minister of Energy and Alberta Energy Regulator Executives (July 2019)

Read it here.