There are significant changes on the horizon with regards to how thermal in situ oil sands operations (“Thermal Projects”) can use and impact water in the Province of Alberta. On February 9, 2009, Alberta Environment (“AE”) and the Energy Resources Conservation Board (the “ERCB”) jointly issued a draft directive on Requirements for Water Measurement, Reporting, and Use for Thermal In Situ Oil Sands Schemes (the “Draft Directive”). In addition to the Draft Directive, AE has also developed a draft Policy to Assess and Manage Non-saline Groundwater in Direct Contact with Bitumen, In Situ Oil Sands Operations (the “Draft Policy”). Although both the Draft Directive and Draft Policy have yet to become effective, both documents propose considerable modifications to the use and management of water that will seriously impact and increase demands on Thermal Projects in Alberta.

type Oil & Gas Alert - March 2009 - Proposed Changes to Water Use in Oil Sands Operations