Canada, the sixth largest petroleum producing country in the world and occupies second position after Russia in the production of natural gas. The Canadian oil industry also referred to as the Canadian ‘Oil Patch’. The term ‘Oil Patch’ mainly refers to upstream operations, which includes exploration and production of oil and gas. This term gives lesser importance to downstream operations, which includes refining, distribution and selling of oil and gas products.
Today, the petroleum production in Canada is a vital part of the national economy and plays an essential role in world supply of oil and gas. The Canadian petroleum industry developed in parallel with that of United States. But it developed in different ways because of Canada’s unique geography, geology, resources and patterns of settlement.
The first oil well was dug by hand in 1858 by James Miller Williams in Ontario. Later he found ‘The Canadian Oil Company’ which was the world’s first integrated oil company. Alberta is the largest producer of crude oil, natural gas and gas products in Canada. Daily, over 100 new wells are spudded per day in the province of Alberta. Over the last few years, Canada’s oil and gas industry has risen significantly.
According to the CAPP (Canadian Association for Petroleum Producers) report of 2008, Canada produced 438,000 cubic meters per day of crude oil, bitumen and natural gas. Canada has the energy potential not to just become a major North American producer but to become a global energy super power.
Canada is one of the world’s wealthiest nations. The Canada’s economy is dominated by mainly two sectors, logging and oil and gas industries. Most of these products are exported, mainly to the United States. According to the 2013 economic status, the energy sector accounted for over 24% of total exports in Canada. Over 90% of the economic benefit of Canada goes to Alberta, the largest oil and gas producer in Canada. The major source of Canadian revenue comes from the same.
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