The Japan Canada Oil Sands Hangingstone Project is up and running once again after 2016 production ceased during the wildfire.
On Wednesday, Premier Rachel Notley along with Mayor Melissa Blake were at the site, about 50 kilometer south of Fort McMurray, to address industry leaders about the positive impact JACOS should have on the local and provincial economy.
Among those leaders was JACOS President, Abe Satoshi, Chairman of JAPEX, Osamu Watanabe as well as Executive Director of JOGMEC, Kenji Akiyoshi.
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The Premier says this partnership shows there is still a tremendous confidence in the economic bounce back of the oil industry.
“To move forward on a sustainable wave, to build this project and to expand the degree to which they’re exporting not only to North America but to markets all over the world. It was a great vote of confidence in this community, this industry and all of Alberta.”
According to JACOS, the Hangingstone Expansion Project is expected to accumulate up to 20,000 barrels of oil per day by the second half of 2018.
Notley believes that will only mean positive things for Alberta’s use of the TransMountain Pipeline.
“We’ve been doing a lot of work to increase interest in Alberta products and diversify our markets, especially with respect to the energy industry. We know that the pipeline is a critical part of it. Which is why we are so pleased the Federal Government has approved it and we are confidant that it will withstand the inevitable legal challenges and we can move forward.”
It’s JACOS’ hope that bitumen production will continue for around 30 years using the steam-assisted gravity drainage method, a method which has been utilized at the Hangingstone Demonstration operation for more than 15 years.
Notley says the Alberta government is aware that there will be a need for a sustainably produced source of petro chemicals for many years to come.
“I think there are great opportunities and we’re going to continue to do what we can to support this industry here and to support its responsible grown and to ensure that the whole world knows that they can get responsibly and sustainably developed petro-chemical products from right here in Alberta.”
JACOS achieved their first steam back in April and started bitumen production back on August 3.