The state of the Canadian oil sands?
Tell a Friend About This EventTell a Friend

When: October 22-2019
11:30-1:00 pm
Where: Saltlik Calgary- Sky Lounge Room Upstairs
101 8th Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta  T2P 0L5
Contact: Jill Sugars

« Go to Upcoming Event List  


The state of the Canadian oil sands? 



Early in the 2000s the successful commercialization of steam-assist gravity drainage unlocked the majority of the oil sands reserves known today.  This new technological innovation when coupled with higher oil prices and a mentality that the world was running out of oil, led to a boom in the Canadian oil sands.  However, the same sort of ingenuity that gave birth to the modern oil sands also gave rise to horizontal multistage fracking and a tsunami of supply from the United States.  This contributed to a large-scale correction that began in late 2014, but continues to shape the future of oil supply, demand and geopolitics.  For the Canadian oil sands, the boom that preceded the price collapse contributed to many of the reputational challenges the industry faces today.  But much has changed.  This presentation will document the current state of the Canadian oil sands, what has changed, why, how much, and the challenges that remain. 


Kevin’s Biography:

Kevin Birn, Vice President, North American Crude Oil Markets, IHS Markit and a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute.  Mr. Birn is based in Calgary and leads western Canadian crude oil market research services which includes the Canadian Oil Sands Dialogue. His expertise includes North American crude oil markets, crude oil logistics, crude oil GHG estimation, Canadian oil sands development, including oil sands cost and competitiveness, and Canadian energy and climate policy. Mr. Birn has authored over seventy reports related to western crude oil extraction, the development of the Canadian oil sands and associated environmental and climate policy.  Prior to joining IHS Markit, Mr. Birn was a Senior Economist with the Government of Canada and a Partner in a software firm.  Mr. Birn holds an undergraduate degree in business and a graduate degree in economics from the University of Alberta. His oil sands research is publicly available from IHS Markit at


Canadian Heavy Oil Association
#100 221 10th Ave SE
Calgary, Alberta T2G 0V9