this blog has moved to a new address:

Please update your RSS, bookmarks, and links to

Friday, December 21, 2007

capturing alberta's hot air.

Graham Thomson had some pretty interesting columns this past Wednesday and Thursday as he interviewed Premier Ed Stelmach and Alberta Liberal Leader Kevin Taft for the year-end editions of the Edmonton Journal.

Here is Ed Stelmach presenting his expert knowledge of climate change and his government's strategy to capture it...

One Christmas present I'll give politicians in their year-enders this week is a chance to make their argument without being edited down to a 10-word quote. Here, for example, is Stelmach on the issue of climate change and Alberta's intent to store carbon dioxide emissions underground:

"There's a fair amount of research now -- there's no sense capturing it in a way that it's going to escape. So what is the appropriate geography, or geology, to capture it? So how deep do we have to go? Is it in shallow gas wells or deep gas? Deep oil? Will it make sense to capture that CO2, let's say, in the Redwater field, or do we have to pipe it to Medicine Hat? These are all questions, research that's being done today. Once those decisions are made, then the next step is to build infrastructure, because you have to pipe it to those locations. And the efficiency gains, for instance, in the Redwater fields, if you're sequestering and pressurizing the existing oil and wells, you will then draw much more production out of those wells. So there's rather than creating a new footprint someplace in the province of Alberta, drilling a new gas well, we would of course bring about much better efficiency. Because they say, about 60 per cent of the gas is still in the old wells."


Anonymous said...

You're right Dave, it's good to see Premier Stelmach discussing the actual mechanics and science of something like carbon sequestration. It is definitely preferrable to listening to the Liberals drone on and on about an issue none of them are fully briefed on. Keep in mind that Canada's current status with regards to global warming is the result of over a decade of Federal Liberal lies and inaction. We don't need any more of that here in Alberta.

Also... too bad there was apparently nothing quotable or noteworthy from Kevin Taft's turn at bat.

Not that anyone's surprised.

Anonymous said...

Ed Stelmach always adds a little "je ne sais quoi" to the political dialogue in Alberta.

Anonymous said...

Oh let's not forget Kevin Taft's year end commentary on oilsands:

""The position we took is that the bottom line increase in 'take' put forward by the Hunter panel seems eminently reasonable. The details of how you get there, it's incredibly technical.

"If you go on the government website, the Department of Energy website on energy royalties, there are pages and pages of mathematical formulas and considerations and so on. It is a very technical exercise. In my view, it's not an exercise that politicians should be getting into the detail.

"As politicians, you set the object, whether it's building a high-speed rail from Edmonton to Calgary or whatever else you're constructing. But you need to rely on technical experts to help with the details. The government has a department full of people like that and the money to hire whoever else they want. And that's where the sorting out really has to happen."

Or, to edit it down to a 10-word statement: The Liberals don't have an easily understood policy on royalties.

Or, put another way: Liberals will announce a royalty policy if they form government.

The odds against that are stiff."

The Libs are apparently running on the Homer Simpson campaign platform: "ohhhh... can't someone else do it?"