Newspaper article The Canadian Press

'Part of the Solution:' Alberta Seeks Proposals to Build New Refinery

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

'Part of the Solution:' Alberta Seeks Proposals to Build New Refinery

Article excerpt

Alberta seeks proposals for new refinery

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EDMONTON - Alberta is looking for someone to build a new oil refinery, but Premier Rachel Notley says any deal needs to work for both industry and taxpayers.

"The project must make sense for Alberta," Notley said Tuesday. "It must have a return on investment for Albertans, and it must diversify the way we use the energy resources that we as Albertans all own."

Notley announced the province is looking for expressions of interest from companies to build a new refinery or expand an existing one. Such requests are the first step in the process, but would include specifics such as financing, technical feasibility, and timelines.

The projects would have to use Alberta-produced oil feedstock. The deadline for requests is Feb. 8.

"We know companies are interested. We've heard it first-hand," said Notley. "So we are stepping up. As the owners of this resource, we are saying once and for all, let's stop the talk and start acting."

Notley declined to specify what the province is looking for or what it might offer on any refinery construction deal, saying it's too early in the process.

"We're open to looking at different arrangements, but we're going to (first) get a sense of the range of arrangements that might be coming our way," said Notley. "Then we'll look at what gives the best return on investment to Albertans."

Terry Parker, head of the Building Trades of Alberta, said the workforce is already in place.

"We have far too many unemployed, skilled construction workers," Parker said. "We need major projects happening."

Alberta already has four upgraders and four refineries, with the North West Sturgeon refinery set to begin commercial production next year.

The February deadline for expressions of interest comes at the same time the legislated three-month window opens for a spring election in Alberta. …

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