Alberta Premier Alison Redford and B.C. Premier Christy Clark recently announced a "framework agreement" on the proposed Northern Gateway oil pipeline, removing what was seen as a serious barrier to development.
The Alberta government this week announced that it is postponing royalty rate hikes on some types of new oil and gas wells in hope of attracting new drilling projects. The change is an acknowledgement that the higher royalties scheduled to take effect in 2009 are putting the province at a competitive disadvantage. Unfortunately, the change falls far short of the reforms necessary to encourage petroleum industry investment, production, and employment in the present economic environment.