Thursday, May 25, 2017

NDP MLA Carla Beck — who many are speculating will run for the party’s leadership — said the polling reflects what her caucus colleagues have been hearing around the province: “There is a lot of frustration with the government.” She says the party will continue to travel around the province listening to Saskatchewan people so the NDP will “have a good understanding of the realities they are facing and bring their voices forward in the media and the legislative assembly.” According to Beck, Saskatchewan people are “feeling a sense of betrayal from the provincial government” because they were not told the truth about the province’s finances during last year’s provincial election. She says Wall’s government has “forgotten who they’re working for.”

NDP MLA Carla Beck tells voters that Brad Wall's Conservatives in the Sask. Party have forgotten who they are working for.
I doubt this is the case. The Sask Party MLAs like the NDP MLAs all work for the oil and gas industry and not for the citizens.
I know this is the case based on the record of the NDP folks in Alberta. They supposedly told us that they would represent families. Really? I guess this is why they gave $235 million to big oil for liabilities that big oil is responsible for in their less than well funded orphan well program. It's doubtful that this "loan" will be paid back and it is an astonishing amount of cash that exceeds the previous largess of the giveaway Tories who under Stelmach gave $30 million to "create jobs" for the same reason.
The fact is that we are under the boots of the oil and gas industry in Alberta and in Saskatchewan and if the NDP get hired in Saskatchewan--quicker than you can say "oil and gas" --the NDP folks will become the NDPCs. It's the way it is. We should simply write to big oil as I am now doing in my e-mails because they form the real government in Alberta.


Premier Brad Wall says he knew the Sask. Party's budget would be unpopular and acknowledges a new poll "certainly points to such a decline for our party."
CALGARYHERALD.COM

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It will be interesting if voters in Saskatchewan do what we did in AB and use the NDP broom to clean out the Conservatives in the form of the Sask. Party.
I imagine that two side by side NDP governments next to the minority Liberal government in BC will mean only one thing. Major debt for the citizens and more wrangling over pipelines.
If only big oil had been actually responsible and cleaned up after themselves --if only big oil had respected landowners like Jessica Ernst and Diana Daunheimer --if only big oil was not the real government and not the political parties we hire.
If only.
But there you go. The voters in Saskatchewan may dump the Wall and choose the flood and yet--they don't know that the NDP will morph to the Sask. Party faster than they can all say --"oil and gas".
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From: Stewart Shields 
Date: Thu, May 25, 2017 at 5:17 PM
Subject: Wall Could Perhaps Need More Than The Calgary Oil Barons??
To: brian mason <brian.mason@assembly.ab.ca>, dunvegan.centralpeace.notley@assembly.ab.ca, letters <letters@edmontonjournal.com>, citydeak@leaderpost.com, letters@thestarphoenix.com, mailbag@edmsun.com
Cc: Calgary MountainView <Calgary.MountainView@assembly.ab.ca>, calgary.currie@assembly.ab.ca, Debbie carlson <edmonton.ellerslie@assembly.ab.ca>, Doreen Mueller <Doreen.Mueller@justice.gc.ca>, edmonton.goldbar@assembly.ab.ca, edmonton.riverview@assembly.ab.ca, fishcreek <calgary.fishcreek@assembly.ab.ca>, goodale <goodale.r@parl.gc.ca>, grande prairie <grandeprairie.wapiti@assembly.ab.ca>, innisfail <innisfail.sylvanlake@assembly.ab.ca>, Lacombe Ponoka <Lacombe.Ponoka@assembly.ab.ca>, lethbridge.east@assembly.ab.ca, Liberal Canada <info@liberal.ca>, mccallum <mccallum.j@parl.gc.ca>, raitt <raittl@parl.gc.ca>, Ronalie Campbell , sherwood <sherwood.park@assembly.ab.ca>, slave lake <lesser.slavelake@assembly.ab.ca>, Strathmore Brooks <Strathmore.Brooks@assembly.ab.ca>, T Banks <>


Who couldn’t see this coming a mile away? It’s kind of nice to watch these high roller go up the ladder when their resources are at an unusual high—because you know they will be clawing the air on their way back to the ground when thing correct! I don’t think Wall has forgotten who he’s working for---I think he still works for the Calgary oil industry that he has always worked for!  Wall has always been a Petro-Puppet paying close attention to those in the Calgary industry that financially support his election ambitions!!  Many folks have awaited news that Wall’s government was about to offer a good sized fine on Husky oil for the damages they cause all those who live or use the Saskatchewan River for recreation!!  The runaway spill of bitumen slurry that travelled across most of Northern Saskatchewan at the same time Notley in Alberta dealing with the biggest disaster in Canadian history—woke up a lot of Saskatchewan folks who had drank too much of Wall’s Lemonade!! Alberta leaders also looked brilliant while returning the public’s royalty production to the domestic and foreign oil barons and still able to keep Alberta afloat by cutting deeply into needed infrastructure spending!! Now that their roll of twin has run out they can only howl about the NDP spending on infrastructure neglected for so long by the Conservatives!
I hope Wall can last for at least 2 more years so we can have a running comparative with our Alberta Government!!  Who wants to switch leaders now!!
Stewart Shields
 http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/brad+wall+responds+poll+showing+surge+saskatchewan/13396625/story.html


Brad Wall responds to poll showing NDP surge in Saskatchewan


D.C. FRASER, REGINA LEADER-POST, REGINA LEADER~POST  05.25.2017

Brad Wall responds to poll showing NDP surge in Saskatchewan

Premier Brad Wall
MICHAEL BELL / REGINA LEADER~POST
Premier Brad Wall says he knew the Sask. Party’s budget would be unpopular and acknowledges a new poll “certainly points to such a decline for our party.”
Wall responded to a Mainstreet/Postmedia poll showing his Sask. Party is dropping in popularity in a Facebook post Thursday.
The poll shows 49 per cent of decided and leaning voters would vote for the NDP, putting them nine points ahead of the 40 per cent support for the Sask. Party.
In Regina, the NDP is dominating the polls with 58 per cent of decided or leaning voters saying they would support that party, while 29 per cent would choose the Sask. Party. In Saskatoon, the NDP maintained an edge with 46 per cent to 42 for the Sask. Party. Support for the NDP in the rest of Saskatchewan is also increasing, as the two parties are now tied at 46 per cent (due to incorrect number provided to the Leader-Post the wrong figures for the rest of Saskatchewan appeared in Thursday’s newspaper).
“Everyone at the cabinet table knew the impact these decisions would have for your pocketbook and your family. Even with the largest personal and property tax reductions in Saskatchewan history since we came to office, these changes still mean many families have to adjust their personal budgets,” said Wall in the post.
He says the province needed to adjust to low resource prices and “that’s why we’re controlling spending, reducing our reliance on resource revenues and returning the budget to balance in three years with measures to keep our economy strong.”
Saskatchewan currently has a $1.3-billion deficit and the budget, through significant spending cuts, aims to reduce that to $685 million next year before bringing the books to balance before the next election.
“This budget ensures we can continue to provide the core public services you and your family rely on for the short and long term. I remain confident that we made the right decisions — difficult but necessary decisions — to ensure we see a significant improvement in the province’s finances, Saskatchewan’s economy and the future of every family across our great province,” Wall wrote.
NDP MLA Carla Beck — who many are speculating will run for the party’s leadership — said the polling reflects what her caucus colleagues have been hearing around the province: “There is a lot of frustration with the government.”
She says the party will continue to travel around the province listening to Saskatchewan people so the NDP will “have a good understanding of the realities they are facing and bring their voices forward in the media and the legislative assembly.”
According to Beck, Saskatchewan people are “feeling a sense of betrayal from the provincial government” because they were not told the truth about the province’s finances during last year’s provincial election.
She says Wall’s government has “forgotten who they’re working for.”
dfraser@postmedia.com


Julie Ali · 
Doesn't matter who you vote for ---the public ends up paying for poor decisions of the government. In Alberta we tossed the unproductive Tories and now have the NDP folks who don't appear to be any different than the PCs. They are the NDPCs.

I thought we'd get change with the NDP but it appears that the only change we got is in the people wasting public dollars.

For example Mr. Horne gave $10 million to a dubious venture--Pure North S'Energy Foundation for no good reason that I can determine:
http://www.cbc.ca/.../pure-north-unproven-benefits-1.4053866

Six days before Alberta Health rushed to deliver a $10-million grant to a private alternative-health foundation, the ministry abruptly changed the grant's purpose, eliminating the need for ethics approval for what experts say was a human-subject experiment on thousands of Alberta seniors.

On Dec. 23, 2013, former Progressive Conservative health minister Fred Horne approved the funding to Pure North S'Energy Foundation to expand an unproven, alternative "wellness" program, ultimately to more than 7,300 seniors.

********

Not satisfied by this waste of cash the Hoffman hands over $4.2 million more. It's a mind boggling transfer of cash for an alternative health program with no deliverables that I can determine.

Meanwhile the Hoffman is silent about the reason for the approval and the role of the deputy health minister in this transfer of public funds.
http://www.cbc.ca/.../medicare-alberta-sarah-hoffman-pure...

Alberta Health Minister Sarah Hoffman needs to order an investigation into whether deputy minister Carl Amrhein's relationship with a private health foundation influenced the ministry's decision to give the foundation a multi-million-dollar grant, says a health advocacy group.

Friends of Medicare executive director Sandra Azocar called for the investigation after a CBC News investigation revealed Amrhein had personally endorsed, and participated in, an unproven alternative health program offered by the Calgary-based Pure North S'Energy Foundation.
************

The Pure North Debacle is a pure indication of DeMockracy in action in Alberta. No doubt there are similar instances of poor decision making by politicians in Saskatchewan.

Even if you do vote out Brad Wall it won't make any difference. All the political parties are captive to big oil and we might as well just understand this. We might as well vote for big oil to rule over us. We do this in Alberta.

Money in the public bank in Alberta ends up with big oil sooner or later. We not only subsidize the work of big oil but now we are giving them "loans" that won't be paid back. I imagine the abject devotion to big oil that is present in Alberta is also present in Saskatchewan and Mr. Wall appears to be similar to Ms. Notley in being in the thrall of the industry.

http://www.cbc.ca/.../orphan-wells-notley-announcement...

Alberta will loan $235 million to the energy industry to clean up orphaned oil and gas wells, Premier Rachel Notley announced Thursday.

The money will flow to the Orphan Well Association (OWA), which is administered by the Alberta Energy Regulator but funded by energy companies. The loan will be paid back over a decade by industry, with the interest covered by $30 million the federal government announced in the last budget.
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Alberta rushed $10-million grant, eliminated ethical oversight, for unproven health program

Review found Pure North program could not prove health or economic benefits

By Jennie Russell, Charles Rusnell, CBC News Posted: Apr 04, 2017 5:00 AM MT Last Updated: Apr 04, 2017 5:00 AM MT
Alberta Health determined the alternative health program offered by the private foundation of a Calgary oilman wasn't adequately supported by science and its high doses of supplements could pose a potential health risk — but the government provided a $10-million grant anyway.
Alberta Health determined the alternative health program offered by the private foundation of a Calgary oilman wasn't adequately supported by science and its high doses of supplements could pose a potential health risk — but the government provided a $10-million grant anyway. (CBC)
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Six days before Alberta Health rushed to deliver a $10-million grant to a private alternative-health foundation, the ministry abruptly changed the grant's purpose, eliminating the need for ethics approval for what experts say was a human-subject experiment on thousands of Alberta seniors.
On Dec. 23, 2013, former Progressive Conservative health minister Fred Horne approved the funding to Pure North S'Energy Foundation to expand an unproven, alternative "wellness" program, ultimately to more than 7,300 seniors.
Horne made the decision against the advice of officials from several ministries who had determined the Pure North program was not adequately supported by scientific evidence, could not prove the incredible health and economic benefits it claimed, and could cause adverse health effects in participants. The officials also said no funding should be granted without an ethical review of the entire Pure North program.
"Current research supplied by Pure North is unpublished in peer reviewed medical journals," states an internal Alberta Justice document dated Aug. 28, 2013, less than four months before Horne granted the funding. "It is unclear if the results are clinically significant and lead to better health outcomes."
Horne did not respond to interview requests over the past several weeks.
University of Alberta political scientist Jim Lightbody, an expert in public governance, said there are "tried and true" methods for governments to independently determine whether funding a particular project is valid. That includes substantiating the benefits claimed by the organization requesting funding.
"That is why there are guidelines; that is why there is a competitive process (for funding)," Lightbody said. "And it would seem that there was an end run -  consistently - around any attempt to apply that kind of standard testing to this kind of operation."

Pure North collects health information

Pure North is the private foundation of multi-millionaire Calgary philanthropist Allan Markin, the former chairman of energy giant Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. He declined repeated interview requests from CBC News.
The foundation targets vulnerable populations such as the homeless, addicted, seniors and Indigenous people in such places as homeless shelters and on reserves. Its various health programs offer high-dose vitamins and minerals, lifestyle counselling and, in some cases, treatments to remove heavy metals from participants' blood and mercury-amalgam fillings from their teeth.
None of its alternative treatments are supported by conclusive science.
Pure North collects detailed medical information from its participants, including blood samples, and has built a "mega-database" to which university researchers have been provided access.
The foundation, however, insists it is not conducting research but instead gathers data to gauge the efficacy of its program. Its spokesperson, Stephen Carter, told CBC News the information provided to researchers is simply a "secondary" use of that data.
Carter also claims Pure North has many studies that prove the effectiveness of its program. He said 50,000 people have participated in the program without any safety issues.
Tim Caulfield, director of research for the University of Alberta's Health Law Institute, said if the government had consulted him on whether the Pure North program should be funded, "I would clearly say no.
"I don't think there is any evidence to support, for example, the high doses of vitamin D," he said. "Yes, there is interesting research going on. But there is no evidence to support the funding of this kind of level for this kind of service."

Irregularities in funding agreement process

Thousands of pages of internal government documents obtained by CBC News reveal numerous irregularities in how Alberta Health came to provide the funding to Pure North, including that:
  • For more than a year, the Pure North funding request had been classified, and internally analyzed as a research project. Documents show the research project was supported by then-premier Alison Redford. But the documents contain no explanation for why the ministry abruptly changed the grant's purpose on Dec. 17, six days before Horne signed the funding agreement.
  • The change from health research project to an expansion of Pure North's existing seniors program meant Pure North was not required to obtain independent approval from a research ethics board for its activities.
  • The final grant agreement did not contain any detailed project budget, clear description of the program Pure North would offer to seniors, or specific targets the foundation had to meet.
  • The $10-million grant was inexplicably rushed. "We need to execute it this week," Health chief delivery officer Glenn Monteith told colleagues in a Dec. 17, 2013 email entitled "Urgent meeting." A colleague, Lorraine McKay, issued the directive in an email. "10 million (dollar) grant Pure North - right now. To foundation's efforts to support seniors' initiatives. High level - one year, one time," she said, adding, "bolt in some description material" for the grant.
  • A senior Health official personally walked the ministry's payment request to ATB Financial in downtown Edmonton on Dec. 24, the day after the grant agreement was signed.  
  • Pure North's funding was not "gated" or paid in instalments, based on demonstrable performance measures. Instead, Alberta Health gave Pure North the entire $10 million up front, which some academic researchers say is extraordinary.
  • The documents contain no discussion of the potential liability for the Alberta government should Pure North's program cause any of the adverse health effects senior officials had previously identified. In a review of the Pure North program a year after the program started, Alberta's chief medical officer of health warned of potential liability for the province "should things go wrong."
Pure North spokesperson Stephen Carter acknowledged the request for funding started as a research project, but the focus eventually changed to an established program targeting seniors.
"The Government of Alberta, and Alberta Health in general, isn't interested in funding research projects," Carter said. "They're interested in funding health care for Albertans. So they decided to shift the project and we agreed to shift the project to providing direct health care."
Internal documents, however, show that immediately after Pure North received the funding, Markin began seeking access directly through health minister Fred Horne to anonymized patient data from Alberta Health Services. Markin wanted access to the data so university researchers could assess the efficacy of the recently funded seniors program.
Internal documents show Pure North made repeated requests for funding to the Alberta government, which continued after the NDP assumed power in May 2015.
The program for which Pure North had received the $10-million grant ran for 15 months, ending in March 2015.
As part of the funding agreement, the foundation had to submit both a financial report and a brief progress report every three months. When Pure North submitted its final progress report in late May 2015, it asked for another $4.5 million to continue one part of the program for seniors with special health needs.

"No convincing data" to support claims

In response to the funding request, Alberta Health ordered a review of the Pure North wellness program. Two of three reviewers agreed there was no convincing data to support the claim the program would achieve the health benefits claimed by Pure North. The third reviewer thought a more rigorous review of the program would be needed to either confirm or contradict the foundation's claims.
Two reviewers also raised concerns about the quality of evidence supplied by Pure North. They said much of it was self-reported by participants, there was no evidence any benefits were specifically attributable to the Pure North program, and changes to measures of chronic disease didn't appear large enough to be clinically relevant.
"Placebo effects are very common with nutritional supplements and there are concerns that the program may be overstating the benefits of the supplements, enhancing the placebo effect," a summary of the two reviewers' findings states.
Carter insisted the program was a success. As proof, he cited a study conducted by Herbert Emery of the University of Calgary's School of Public Policy.
Emery's study found participants who stayed in the program for two years significantly reduced their visits to emergency rooms and hospitals, saving the system $276 for each Pure North participant.
But all three independent reviewers found a serious problem with how Pure North calculated savings for the health-care system. They said Pure North told the ministry each client cost the program between $1,280 and $2,300 a year.
When Pure North performed its cost-saving calculations, it "used a cost of $500 per year per client.
"It is unclear how the program could be offered at a dramatically lower cost while maintaining the same results," the reviewers' summary states.
"Based on the absolute reduction in hospital visits (2 per cent), we would need to treat 50 people to avoid a single hospital visit," the review's summary states. "Even using the $500 figure, the program cost would be $25,000 in order to save $1,107 in acute care costs."
Two reviewers said the documentation supplied by Pure North didn't support further investment by the government. The third reviewer couldn't make an evidence-based recommendation but felt a more formal review was warranted "due to the pressing need for community-based health promotion in the province."
NDP Health Minister Sarah Hoffman turned down Pure North's request for further funding of the seniors program based on advice from ministry officials.
In an interview, Hoffman said she had no knowledge of how Pure North came to get the funding from the former Conservative government.
If you have any information about this story, or for another potential story, please contact us in confidence at cbcinvestigates@cbc.ca

CBC INVESTIGATES

Friends of Medicare calls for investigation of Alberta deputy minister's ties to private health foundation

Health Minister Sarah Hoffman refuses to answer questions about potential conflict of interest

By Charles Rusnell, Jennie Russell, CBC News Posted: Apr 14, 2017 6:00 AM MT Last Updated: Apr 20, 2017 9:48 AM MT
Sandra Azocar of the Friends of Medicare is calling for an investigation of ties between Alberta health’s deputy minister and a private health foundation.
Sandra Azocar of the Friends of Medicare is calling for an investigation of ties between Alberta health’s deputy minister and a private health foundation. (Rick Bremness/CBC)
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About The Author

Photo of Charles Rusnell, Jennie Russell
Charles Rusnell, Jennie Russell
Investigative reporters
Charles Rusnell and Jennie Russell are reporters with CBC Investigates, the award-winning investigative unit of CBC Edmonton. Their journalism in the public interest is widely credited with forcing accountability, transparency and democratic change in Alberta. Send tips in confidence to cbcinvestigates@cbc.ca. @charlesrusnell @jennierussell_

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Alberta Health Minister Sarah Hoffman needs to order an investigation into whether deputy minister Carl Amrhein's relationship with a private health foundation influenced the ministry's decision to give the foundation a multi-million-dollar grant, says a health advocacy group.
Friends of Medicare executive director Sandra Azocar called for the investigation after a CBC News investigation revealed Amrhein had personally endorsed, and participated in, an unproven alternative health program offered by the Calgary-based Pure North S'Energy Foundation.
In October 2016, Amrhein signed, on behalf of the ministry, a $4.2-million grant agreement with the foundation for a nurse-practitioner-led clinic. Hoffman has insisted the clinic will not be offering any alternative health treatments.
"I think there are so many levels of wrong with this situation and this relationship," Azocar said.
"I definitely think there has to be some kind of an inquiry or an investigation as to how effectively the deputy minister is currently doing his job, and where we look at his ability to continue in an impartial kind of role around potential conflicts of interest," Azocar said.
Amrhein has declined interview requests from CBC News. In a statement provided Tuesday, an Alberta Health spokesperson said Amrhein "fully disclosed" his relationship with Pure North when he became deputy minister in August 2015.

Relationship reported to ethics commissioner

Alberta's ethics commissioner, Marguerite Trussler, told CBC News that Amrhein disclosed his participation in the Pure North program. She also said Amrhein told her "recently" that the decision to grant Pure North funding was made by Hoffman and he merely signed off in his role as deputy minister.
Hoffman has refused to answer questions about what, if anything, Amrhein disclosed to her about his relationship with Pure North and Markin.
Wildrose accountability critic Nathan Cooper said Hoffman has a duty to be transparent.
"The health minister needs to answer this question," Cooper said. "It is a very reasonable question that Albertans should be able to know, whether or not this particular individual disclosed what certainly could be seen as a conflict of interest to the minister, prior to making some significant decisions on funding within her department."
Nathan Cooper
Wildrose accountability critic Nathan Cooper says the health minister’s refusal to address the issue is troubling. (Alberta legislature)
Azocar said she finds it troubling that Hoffman is unwilling to answer basic questions relating to the integrity of her ministry.
"I think that sometimes silence says a lot more than actual words," Azocar said. "Albertans need to know that they can trust their leadership, that they can trust whoever is in charge of making decisions for the greater good of Albertans.
"And this situation, I think, kind of highlights the fact that in this case, there are a lot of things that have not been done perhaps in the best way that could have been done," she added.

Documents reveal relationship

Documents obtained by CBC News through freedom of information revealed a years-long relationship between Amrhein, Pure North and its founder, multi-millionaire Calgary philanthropist Allan Markin.
The documents show that in July 2014, Amrhein, while provost at the University of Alberta, wrote a letter of support for Pure North and Markin, who is a major donor to the university.
Carl Amrhein
Deputy health minister Carl Amrhein participated in Pure North S’Energy Foundation’s alternative health program. (CBC)
Internal Alberta Health documents show Pure North used Amrhein's letter in September 2014, and again in December 2014, to bolster funding requests to the Progressive Conservative government.
The documents show that after Amrhein became deputy minister of health, he continued his relationship with Pure North and Markin. In fact, emails show Amrhein participated in Pure North's unproven health program, which features high doses of vitamin D.
'I think there are so many levels of wrong with this situation and this relationship.'- Sandra Azocar, Friends of Medicare executive director
Amrhein also communicated directly, on several occasions, with Markin and Pure North executive director Wendy Paramchuk. The documents show Amrhein also directed ministry staff to research and respond to Pure North requests for health policy changes that would directly benefit Pure North, such as making vitamin D a registered drug.
None of the policy changes were implemented, although the documents reveal senior ministry officials expended significant resources researching them and dealing directly with Markin.
Earlier this month, CBC News reported that in December 2013, Alberta Health gave Pure North a $10-million grant to expand an existing alternative health program — against the advice of senior ministry officials who said the program was not adequately supported by science, it could not prove the health and economic benefits it claimed, and could cause adverse effects.


Alberta offers $235M loan to clean up orphan wells

Funds will help get oil services workers back on the job

CBC News Posted: May 18, 2017 8:53 AM MT Last Updated: May 18, 2017 2:21 PM MT
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley waits before making an announcement regarding work to speed the cleanup of Alberta’s old energy infrastructure near Carstairs, Alta.
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley waits before making an announcement regarding work to speed the cleanup of Alberta’s old energy infrastructure near Carstairs, Alta. (Jeff McIntosh/Canadian Press)
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(Note: CBC does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of external links.)
Alberta will loan $235 million to the energy industry to clean up orphaned oil and gas wells, Premier Rachel Notley announced Thursday.
The money will flow to the Orphan Well Association (OWA), which is administered by the Alberta Energy Regulator but funded by energy companies. The loan will be paid back over a decade by industry, with the interest covered by $30 million the federal government announced in the last budget.
The OWA is dealing with about 2,000 orphan wells. A well becomes orphaned when its corporate owner goes bankrupt without enough assets to pay for the cleanup. Until recently, industry paid $15 million a year into the fund. It doubled to $30 million annually in 2015.
"Since the orphan fund was established, industry has contributed almost a quarter of a billion dollars and this funding has been used to successfully abandon almost a thousand wells and reclaim over 600 sites," said Brad Herald, the chair of the OWA.

Oil service jobs created

The funds that the province will loan the industry will not fully take care of the inventory of wells already on the books of the OWA, but it will help to get oil services workers back on the job.
"The agreement will put people to work as early this summer and will go toward cleaning up orphaned wells over the next three years," Notley said.
Notley made the announcement on an orphan well site near Carstairs, north of Calgary. The well was drilled in 1980, saw 10 different owners and was orphaned in 2015.
"By the end of this summer, you won't be able to tell there was even a well here," she said.
Many oil services workers have been reluctant to come back to the industry because of its uncertainty, but this funding will help, according to Mark Salkeld, chief executive of the Petroleum Services Association of Canada (PSAC).
"A lot of that talent is leery of coming back into that sector for fear of not having a long-term opportunity. What this does is add job security," he said.

Thousands of wells on list

The plan doesn't replace an industry-run fund to clean up wells, Notley said.
Nor does it solve the much larger problem of Alberta's inactive and abandoned wells.
Tens of thousands of Alberta's wells have been abandoned and plugged with concrete, but not fully reclaimed. And 82,546 are inactive, meaning no more oil or natural gas is being produced, but the wells haven't been plugged and could, at least theoretically, be brought back to life.
The province said that it is also working on that problem
********************************************************************
Let us hope that when the province says that it is "working on that problem" that this does not involve yet more millions as a "loan" to big oil yet again.



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