Estevan – Export pipelines and investment are the top two issues for Brad Bennett, vice president of operations and a partner in Estevan-based Sun Country Well Servicing.
Asked on Sept. 19 what are the issues facing the oilpatch in this federal election, he said, “The biggest issue is trying to get rid of our oil. The second biggest problem is we don’t have any investors that want to come into Saskatchewan anymore because we can’t get rid of our oil. No one wants to invest in Saskatchewan, Alberta, or anywhere.
“We need to export it at a decent dollar. In southeast Saskatchewan, we can get rid of our oil a lot better, but the biggest problem is nobody wants to come in and invest in Saskatchewan. On the federal side, we’ve pushed everybody out. We’ve scared everybody. We’re getting no pipelines. We’re going green. We’re getting rid of our coal. The carbon tax is not helping anyone, either. I haven’t added it up, what the carbon tax is going to cost me at the end of the year, but I’m sure it’s going to be a substantial increase,” Bennett said.
“That’s going to hurt the industry, too. We’re just barely trying to keep our doors open as we go through this downturn. This has been going on since 2014, so it’s the longest downturn we’ve ever had. We’re not getting any help from the federal government. Our provincial government can only do so much.”
“I think what we need to do is keep more of our money in Canada, helping Canada,” he said, noting we should be spending so much money on foreign aid around the world.
“My biggest concern is we don’t have any investors left coming into Canada, into the oil industry. They’re all scared. You look at the U.S., and they’re just thriving. If Trump doesn’t get in, I don’t know, however.”
North Dakota’s oil production dropped from 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) in December 2014 to 942,000 in December 2016, but is now 1.44 million bpd, as of July 2019, according to the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources.
He noted that only three oil companies are doing a significant amount of work in southeast Saskatchewan.