Calgary, Alberta – Canada’s major oil sands producers today announced the combination of three existing industry groups, all focused on responsible development, into a single organization called the Pathways Alliance. The new organization incorporates the Oil Sands Pathways to Net Zero Alliance, launched in 2021, Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA), created in 2012, and the Oil Sands Community Alliance (OSCA), created in 2013.
To lead the integration and work of the new Pathways Alliance, Kendall Dilling has been appointed as the organization’s President. Dilling was previously Vice-President, Environment & Regulatory at Cenovus Energy and was seconded earlier this year to serve as Interim Director of the original Oil Sands Pathways to Net Zero Alliance. After 10 years in operation, COSIA will continue to operate as a division within the Pathways Alliance and will remain under the leadership of Wes Jickling, who becomes the organization’s Vice President of Technology Development and COSIA. In addition, Mark Cameron, an experienced senior public servant and public policy leader, has been appointed Vice President, External Relations.
“Having all three of these remarkable industry groups integrated into a more powerful and efficient organization, with combined leadership, will further amplify our collaborative efforts to advance responsible oil sands development and help make Canadian oil the most preferred barrel in the world,” said Dilling. “I’m honoured to be a part of the team that will work with our member companies to demonstrate continued progress on our goals for responsible development, including achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) from oil sands production.”
The six member companies of the Pathways Alliance – Canadian Natural, Cenovus Energy, ConocoPhillips Canada, Imperial, MEG and Suncor Energy – operate about 95 per cent of Canada’s oil sands production.
A key focus of the new Pathways Alliance will be to continue the considerable work already underway to reduce GHGs from oil sands production by 22 million tonnes annually by 2030, and ultimately achieve its goal of net zero emissions from oil sands production by 2050. Achieving the group’s goals will require multiple technology pathways, including a proposed carbon capture and storage network that will capture CO2 from oil sands facilities and transport it to a hub in the Cold Lake area of Alberta for safe and permanent underground storage.
“We know Canadian ingenuity, leadership and collaboration can solve the climate challenge and the most effective way forward will come from new technologies,” said Dilling. “This new organization will enable our members to progress further faster.”
COSIA, which recently celebrated its 10th anniversary, will drive innovation and technological development within the Pathways Alliance to lower emissions and drive other environmental improvements for the industry. It will leverage and continue the considerable innovation work already done to reduce the impact of oil sands development on air, land and water and to remediate tailings. These efforts have resulted in more than 1,100 shared environmental innovations valued at more than Cdn$1.8 billion since 2012. All of COSIA’s existing members will continue to be part of the organization.
The Pathways Alliance also builds on OSCA’s important work in Northeastern Alberta and its long-standing commitment as a collaborative community partner to help manage socioeconomic impacts and benefits. Once the integration is complete, OSCA won’t retain its current name. Its work will continue to be a key component of the Pathways Alliance‘s commitment to responsible development, including in the regions where its members operate.
More information will be shared as the Pathways Alliance takes shape over the coming months.
Alain Moore (Pathways Alliance Communications)
Executive Leadership team:
Kendall Dilling, President
Kendall previously served as the Pathways Alliance Interim Director. As President, he is responsible for overall coordination of external relations, technology and project development on behalf of the Pathways Alliance members. With nearly 30 years of experience in the oil and gas industry, Kendall has expertise in various areas including, environment, regulatory, health and safety, Indigenous and stakeholder relations, surface land and business development.
He comes from Cenovus where he was Vice-President, Environment & Regulatory. In that executive role, he was accountable for developing Cenovus’s environment strategy, managing the regulatory process for major approvals and leading environmental policy development efforts with various levels of government. He also oversaw the Cenovus military liaison team who work closely with the Canadian military to coordinate oil and gas activities on the Cold Lake Air Weapons Range near Cenovus’s operations.
Prior to joining Cenovus in 2012, Kendall worked in environmental consulting and for various Canadian and multinational pipeline and energy companies.
Wes Jickling, Vice President Technology Development and COSIA
Wes previously served as the Chief Executive, COSIA. As Vice President Technology Development and COSIA, he’s responsible for continuing the collaborative approach in the oil sands industry to further develop technologies that improve environmental performance. He joined COSIA in 2019 from his previous role as CEO of Innovation Saskatchewan and Deputy Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs in Saskatchewan. During his career, he has held senior roles in government, corporate, and international organizations, including with the United Nations in Brazil, Swaziland, Ukraine and Sudan.
Mark Cameron, Vice President, External Relations
Mark Cameron previously served as the Senior Advisor, External Relations with the Oil Sands Pathways to Net Zero Alliance. As Vice President, External Relations, he’s responsible for Government Relations, Policy, Communications, Stakeholder Engagement and Community Relations. Prior to joining the Pathways Alliance, Mark was Deputy Minister of the Policy Coordination Office in the Government of Alberta. Mark has three decades of experience in public service, business and consulting. Mark’s public service experience includes several roles with the Government of Canada, including working for Ministers of National Revenue and Intergovernmental Relations, as an analyst in the Privy Council Office, and as Director of Policy and Research and Senior Policy Advisor in the Prime Minister’s Office. He has also served in executive roles with Ontario Power Generation, BlackBerry, and Hill + Knowlton Strategies, and as the past Executive Director of Canadians for Clean Prosperity.
Cautionary Statement: Statements of future events or conditions in this press release, including projections, targets, expectations, estimates, and business plans are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements can be identified by words such as achieve, aspiration, believe, anticipate, intend, propose, plan, goal, seek, project, predict, target, estimate, expect, forecast, vision, strategy, outlook, schedule, future, continue, likely, may, should, will and/or similar references to outcomes in future periods. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, references to the viability, timing and impact of the net zero plan and the development of pathways in support of a net-zero future; support for the pathways from the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada; the ability to enable net zero emissions from oil production and preserve economic contribution from the industry; the deployment of technologies to reduce GHG emissions; the ability to create jobs, accelerate development of the clean tech sector, provide benefits for other sectors and help maintain Canadians’ quality of life; and making economic investments to ensure a successful transition to a net zero world and delivering long term value to shareholders. All net-zero references in this announcement apply to emissions from oil sands operations (defined as scope 1 and scope 2 emissions).
Forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates, projections and assumptions at the time the statements are made. Actual future results, including expectations and assumptions concerning: demand growth and energy source, supply and mix; amount and timing of emissions reductions; the adoption and impact of new facilities or technologies, including on reductions to GHG emissions; project plans, timing, costs, technical evaluations and capacities, and the ability to effectively execute on these plans and operate assets; that any required support for the pathways from the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada will be provided; applicable laws and government policies, including climate change and restrictions in response to COVID-19; production rates, growth and mix; general market conditions; and capital and environmental expenditures, could differ materially depending on a number of factors. These factors include global, regional or local changes in supply and demand for oil, natural gas, and petroleum and petrochemical products and the resulting price, differential and margin impacts; political or regulatory events, including changes in law or government policy and actions in response to COVID-19; the receipt, in a timely manner, of regulatory and third-party approvals including for new technologies; lack of required support from the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada; environmental risks inherent in oil and gas exploration and production activities; environmental regulation, including climate change and GHG regulation and changes to such regulation; availability and allocation of capital; availability and performance of third-party service providers; unanticipated technical or operational difficulties; project management and schedules and timely completion of projects; reservoir analysis and performance; unexpected technological developments; the results of research programs and new technologies, and ability to bring new technologies to commercial scale on a cost-competitive basis; operational hazards and risks; general economic conditions, including the occurrence and duration of economic recessions; and other factors referenced by the companies’ in their most recent respective annual reports and management’s discussion and analysis, as applicable.
Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve a number of risks and uncertainties, some that are similar to other oil and gas companies and some that are unique to the companies. Actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by its forward-looking statements and readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on them. The companies undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this press release, except as required by applicable law.