Report Projects Oil Sands to Contribute Trillions to the Canadian Economy

The Deloitte report says pipelines are the most efficient way to transport oil produced in Western Canada

A comprehensive report on the challenges and opportunities of Canada’s oil sands by auditing giant Deloitte projects that the hydrocarbon deposits will contribute an estimated $2.1 trillion to Canada’s GDP over the next 25 years.

The economic benefits of the added wealth include up to $783 billion in extra tax revenues over the period, which will provide a significant boost to local, provincial and federal governments and help them meet the growing costs of providing social services to an ageing population.

In addition to tax revenue, the export revenue generated from oil sands production will fund up to 905,000 jobs a year according to the Deloitte report.

The report cites lack of pipeline infrastructure as a potential limiting factor in the growth of Canada’s energy exports, as oil production is expected to reach current pipeline capacity by 2017.

Oil producers are currently look to use alternative transportation methods, in particular rail transport, to move the oil to international markets once pipeline capacity has been reached, but these solutions are expensive and inefficient in the long run, and the report says more efficient pipeline transportation will be required to fully realize the oil sands’ potential.

The report mentions the Northern Gateway pipeline, the Keystone XL pipeline and the Trans Mountain Expansion (TMX) as three pending infrastructure projects that are critical for providing sufficient conduits for getting Canada’s oil sands production to world markets.

According to Deloitte, the benefits of completing these projects include: 1) reducing up to $131 billions in losses that are currently incurred from Canadian oil being sold at below market prices due to lack of access to world markets, 2) reducing over-reliance on the US market, and 3) getting access to the fastest growing oil consuming regions of the world in India and China.

The biggest challenge in the oil sands development according to the report is the poor public perception of the oil industry in Canada and the hyperbolic nature of the debate surrounding the potential environmental harm of oil pipelines. The report urges a more fact-based debate on the costs and benefits of pipeline construction that avoids broad generalizations and sweeping judgements about environmental criticism, the oil industry, and energy projects.

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Canadian Immigration Department Finalizes Occupation List for Federal Skilled Trades Program

Welders will be one of the occupations that will be accepted without a 100 application sub-cap under the new Federal Skilled Trade Program (Joe Mabel)

CICS News has learned that Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has made a final decision on which occupations will be eligible for the new Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) that is scheduled to open on January 2nd.

CIC is expected to announce that the FSTP will give occupations one of two treatments; Group A occupations will be sub-capped at 100 applications per year for that particular occupation, and Group B occupations will have no sub-cap and will be accepted until the program’s total cap of 3,000 applications has been reached for the year.

Occupations within Group A will be:

  • Contractors and supervisors in electrical trades and
    telecommunications occupations
  • Contractors and supervisors in carpentry trades
  • Contractors and supervisors in other construction trades,
    installers, repairers and servicers
  • Carpenters
  • Contractors and supervisors in mechanic trades
  • Contractors and supervisors for heavy equipment operator
    crews
  • Supervisors in logging and forestry
  • Supervisors in mining and quarrying
  • Contractors and supervisors in oil and gas drilling services
  • Logging machinery operators
  • Agricultural service contractors, farm supervisors and
    specialized livestock workers
  • Supervisors, mineral and metal processing
  • Supervisors in petroleum, gas and chemical processing
    and utilities
  • Supervisors in plastic and rubber products manufacturing
  • Central control and process operators, mineral and metal
    processing
  • Power engineers and power systems operators
  • Water and waste treatment plant operators

Occupations within Group B will be:

  • Machinists and machining and tooling inspectors
  • Sheet metal workers
  • Structural metal and plate work fabricators and fitters
  • Ironworkers
  • Welders and related machine operators
  • Electricians (except industrial and power system)
  • Industrial electricians
  • Power system electricians
  • Electrical power line and cable workers
  • Telecommunications line and cable workers
  • Telecommunications installation and repair workers
  • Plumbers
  • Steamfitters, pipefitters and sprinkler system installers
  • Gas fitters
  • Construction millwrights and industrial mechanics
  • Heavy-duty equipment mechanics
  • Refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics
  • Railway carmen/women
  • Aircraft mechanics and aircraft inspectors
  • Elevator constructors and mechanics
  • Crane operators
  • Drillers and blasters — surface, mining, quarrying and
    construction
  • Water well drillers
  • Underground production and development miners
  • Oil and gas well drillers, servicers, testers and related
    workers
  • Petroleum, gas and chemical process operators

The FSTP is intended to meet labour shortages in Canada’s resource sectors by creating a path to immigration for foreign nationals skilled in high-demand trades like welding and drilling.

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