Billed as “North America’s Premier Gas Conference,” the Arctic Gas Symposium will be taking place tomorrow through March 3 in Calgary, Alberta. In the province that helped revolutionize tar sands, there will be lots of discussion on the latest issues facing the hydrocarbon industry in the Arctic. One notable topic of interest this year is the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline, which will almost certainly receive final approval by the federal government at its next cabinet meeting. Bob Reid, president of the Aboriginal Pipeline Group, which has a one third stake in the MVP, will discuss how the project can move forward. Already, the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs has begun calling for bids for exploration licenses on three separate parcels in the Beaufort Sea and Mackenzie Delta, which altogether constitute a total of one million hectares (map here; PDF). From looking at the map, it’s amazing to see how far north the proposed pipeline would stretch from the Yukon coastline to the 78th parallel, almost 500 miles north.

Other topics on the agenda include the Alaska Gas Pipeline, working within Canadian and U.S. regulations in the North, and aboriginal involvement in the oil and gas industry. I’m hoping to receive some information on the conference proceedings once the symposium has concluded, at which point I’ll write more about what was discussed.

News Links

“Arctic pipeline approval triggers massive rights sale,” Edmonton Journal

“2010-2011 Beaufort Sea and Mackenzie Delta: Call for Bids” Department of Indian and Northern Affairs

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