Alberta pitches crude oil sands as petchem, fertilizer feedstock

09 December 2009 20:17  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--The Canadian province of Alberta is pitching its massive underground oil sands reserves as an integrated feedstock option for the petrochemical and fertilizer industries, a Canadian energy expert said on Wednesday.

“They are trying to help people in those businesses see the opportunity,” Brant Sangster, energy and resources advisor at Deloitte Canada, said at the Deloitte Oil & Gas Conference in The Woodlands, Texas.

Sangster, a vice president of oil sands operations with Petro-Canada, explained that Alberta has created a small branch to target petrochemical and fertilizer industries in its operations to promote the province.

The trouble, Sangster said, is that there is no immediate large-scale infrastructure market to transform the bitumen from northern Alberta into refined products.

Upgrading the heavy crude extracted from the oil sands is the next step in providing raw materials for the petrochemical and fertilizer production.

Sangster also said that the province is seeking to pump up its upgrading facilities within Alberta, especially in the ethylene market, but provided no other details.

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By: Ryan Hickman
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