Here we go again – after a slow summer signs seem to indicate a very busy winter. Much of the seismic crew capacity is already being booked up in. The market has largely adjusted to the CDN Dollar versus USD parity. Natural Gas commodity pricing is much stronger this year than last. And finally much of the political upheaval in Canada has subsided for the time being. The USA remains a bit of an enigma in terms of its energy policy and one can suppose that things will sort themselves out after the fall presidential election and begin to define itself through policies that follow. Overall it is much more stable for the Canadian OilPatch than a year ago.
In Alberta we are holding our Annual Geophysical Seminar in Red Deer on Sept 17 and 18th. Some of the big issues include Aboriginal Consultation, Riparian Zones, Lake Seismic and 4-D Seismic. Many of these issues have been worked by committee this past year and are drawing close to possible outcomes. These are big picture regulatory issues that have great impacts on how we do business in Alberta and on how long it takes to get approvals. Most of these issues have been around for more than a year and some for much longer. Advocacy often requires slow and steady effort. Patience is a virtue.
October marks our Annual Seismic in Motion (SIM) field trip. Participants spend the day in the field observing the various aspects of seismic and have the opportunity to hear and see contractors performing seismic work It is being offered October 7, 8 or 9, 2008. Location: outside of Calgary, AB Cost: $250 + GST per participant Pick-up: Westin Hotel, downtown Calgary - 7:00 to 7:30 AM. The day finishes at approximately 6:00 in the same spot. A hot lunch is provided. Good walking gear is required as there is some uphill and downhill walking. The CAGC will provide safety equipment, safety coordinator and a tour guide for each group. This event fills up quickly so book spots early. It is open both to industry and members of the public.
Once again we have teamed up with CSEG Outreach Committee and the CAPP GEO committee to host 150 students from the Calgary Board of Education (CBE) system. We have broadened this to include students from SAIT and in 2008 a class from U of C. This is an exciting partnership that produces an excellent opportunity for youth to see something of the Energy business and understand some of its intricacies. In addition we have hosted Industry folks, Oil Company Staff, Regulators, Interested Stakeholders, and the Media. The reviews have continued to be outstanding. For our efforts this past year the three Associations won the Mayor’s Award for Excellence for Educational Partnerships.
This event was hosted in Alberta both in 2006 and in 2007 It features all aspects of seismic – from surveying to line cutting, from drilling to recording, and features special demonstrations of shooting seismic and observing a helicopter long line rescue operation. This event is put on by the contractors and is supported by the Oil Companies in a truly cooperative manner. Such an event takes a great deal of time, effort and resources to put together.
Over the last 3 years we have put together a DVD and CD of the event running about 20 minutes. One was fashioned after a Seismic 101 while the other was set up to highlight our various occupations and training through Enform. They are offered free of charge through the Association in case you might have interest in viewing the activity.
We have distributed this product amongst the industry, regulators and also to many educational outlets. A number of our members have used this footage in their public stakeholder engagements.
The event is characterized as a day out in the field. Seismic has become increasingly linear with various aspects separated by time and distance. Gone are the days when the office staff and/or even the geophysicists get out to the field to spend time observing operations. This opportunity presents itself as a benign version of seismic bringing all aspects to one location. In a safe and organization manner individuals are able to spend the day on the ground viewing demonstrations, interacting with contractors who do the work and have the field expertise and gaining a valuable understanding of the challenges involved in the operations themselves.
It is the type of field trip that holds interest for any type of personality. The demonstrations are quick and move along seamlessly thus ensuring to keep the participant’s attention. As we have as many as two dozen contractors involved, participants have the opportunity to see many different aspects, many different equipment types and hear from many different individuals. The flavour of the day is variety. Whether the individual’s interest is piqued by hands on learning, by visual learning or by listening to presenters, this field trip has them all.
We limit the number of participants on each day for reasons of transportation and safety. The event is generally fully subscribed so if you have interest we encourage you to register soon. Information and registration is available on our website – www.cagc.ca.
Hope to see you out there.
From the Thursday Files
We are often unable to tell people what they need to know because they want to know something else.
– George MacDonald from Huntly, poet and novelist 1824-1905