Is Alberta’s petroleum industry missing out?

Petroleum pipeline proponents say it’s an economic necessity to get oilsands crude to foreign markets. Opponents argue it’s an environmental imperative to prevent that flow.

Alberta government officials have been strenuously making the former case. They warn of imminent spending cuts due to plummeting royalty revenues, which in turn are the result of the low prices that oil companies in the province are receiving.

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Ewart: Oilsands success, pipeline failures prove costly

The Alberta government is paying the price for the success of efforts to develop the oilsands and the failure to develop pipelines to get that oil to market.

The price – as measured by what is known as the differential, or discount, from global benchmark crudes – is currently about $29 on each of the 2.5 million barrels of oil pumped every day in Canada’s biggest oil-producing province. That works out to $72.5 million a day. Over a year, that’s $26.5 billion of potential revenue not circulating in the provincial economy.

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