Government approves $12 million through well abandonment program

The Government of Saskatchewan has approved its first parcel of work packages to be completed through the Accelerated Site Closure Program (ASCP).

A total of 22 packages will engage up to 50 service companies and spread out the work for abandonment activities across the Lloydminster, Kindersley, Swift Current and Estevan areas.  The work includes around 300 well abandonments, 300 flowline abandonments, 75 facility decommissions and 700 other activities related to site reclamation.

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The value of this first tranche of work packages is $12 million and encompasses six different operators.

“We took the necessary time to develop a strategic program, which has been well-received by the oil and gas sector, and are delivering it in a timely, efficient way,” Energy and Resources Minister Bronwyn Eyre said. “This first parcel of work projects incorporates every oil region in the province. Most importantly, it gets the Saskatchewan service sector back to work.”

“We are extremely pleased to see our members getting back to work, and applaud the Saskatchewan government’s approach to administering the ASCP,” Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors president and CEO Mark Scholz said. “This activity could not come at a better time, and will provide much needed relief for struggling oilfield businesses and families.”

The Government of Saskatchewan also remains committed to involving Indigenous partners within the ASCP. Numerous Indigenous-owned service companies have been pre-qualified to obtain work within the program, including in the Onion Lake region.

“Over the past few months, I have spoken directly with many Lloydminster contacts, and I will be glad to see them, and other Saskatchewan-based service companies, back in the field,” Lloydminster MLA Colleen Young said. “The ASCP supports one of our hardest-hit sectors, and our government has diligently engaged with the oil and gas sector to develop a program that gets Saskatchewan companies back to work.”

“The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers would like to recognize the significant efforts of the Government of Saskatchewan to develop and successfully roll out the first tranche of the Accelerated Site Closure Program,” Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers vice-president of Western Canada operations Brad Herald said. “We are confident that this program will help to get Saskatchewan-based oilfield service companies back to work quickly, and also support the efficient and timely closure of inactive upstream oil and natural gas sites.”

The province continues to work through the initial phase of the ASCP to roll out funds in a timely, comprehensive manner. Phase 1 of the program will allocate up to $100 million in funding to Saskatchewan service companies, with subsequent phases currently under development.

The ASCP was launched on May 22. It prioritized Saskatchewan-based service companies and will access up to $400 million, over two years, through the federal COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. It is being overseen by the Ministry of Energy and Resources and delivered in partnership with the Saskatchewan Research Council.

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