Wildfires Rage in Western Canada, Disrupting Energy Output

Bloomberg Article

The number of fires burning in Canada’s top energy-producing province of Alberta continued to decline amid cooler weather, allowing more companies to restore oil and gas production that had been shut earlier in the month.

Alberta had 67 fires, 17 of them out of control, as of Tuesday afternoon, Alberta Wildfire data show. That’s down from 93 fires, including 26 out of control, on Friday. Cooler temperatures and rain are providing relief as more firefighters are scheduled to join the 1,700 with Wildfire Alberta and more than 1,100 from other parts of Canada and the US. New arrivals are expected later this week from as far away as Australia and New Zealand.

“Many of the major wildfires burning received some rain, which means these are good days for firefighters to make real progress on containing these fires,” Christie Tucker, a wildfire information officer, said on Tuesday.

The favorable conditions have allowed energy companies to resume more normal business. Gas flows to the US have rebounded to the highest since the first week of May, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Pipestone Energy Corp., which curtailed the equivalent of about 20,000 barrels of oil production a day, expects to raise output to full capacity in the coming days. Obsidian Energy Ltd. was restoring about 5,650 barrels of production that was shut in at Peace River and Pembina, with another 1,750 barrels of oil set to be restored when access and power is available.

Other company updates include:

  • NuVista Energy Ltd., which curtailed production by the equivalent of about 35,000 barrels of oil a day between May 5 and 22 due to fires in the Grande Prairie area, said it resumed most of its operations over the weekend.
  • Chevron Corp. restored partial operations in the Kaybob Duvernay shale producing region, outside the active fire area, the company said on its website.

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