Alberta’s Role in a Low Carbon Energy Future


In 2020, Alberta is facing significant uncertainty and disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the decline in global oil prices, and the resulting instability in financial markets and economies around the world. Alberta must respond to these near-term challenges, while also identifying opportunities and solutions for long-term sustainable economic recovery, investment attraction, and growth. The inaugural Spark Speaker Series event, Alberta’s Energy Future, delivered in partnership with the University of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business and School of Public Policy, highlighted the actions and opportunities for the short term, while focusing on the long-term sustainability of the province’s energy future.

Kathy Bardswick, CEO of the Canadian Institute for Climate Choices and Al Reid, Executive Vice-President Stakeholder Engagement, Safety, Legal & General Counsel, for Cenovus Energy, have a frank discussion about the threats and opportunities of the current crisis and what a sustainable economic recovery looks like for Alberta’s energy sector.

Recorded on June 16, 2020.

What are the near-term technology opportunities that will enable economic recovery? What are the longer-term innovations that will keep us on track to meet our 2050 goals? What has changed as a result of the crisis, and what remains the same? Leading experts discuss innovation and technology as we explore these key questions for Alberta’s energy future.

  • Dr. Elizabeth Cannon, President Emerita & Professor, Geomatics Engineering, University of Calgary (moderator)
  • Jon Mitchell, Vice President, Sustainability, Suncor
  • Scott Nelson, President & CEO, Titanium Corporation
  • Harrie Vredenburg, Suncor Energy Chair, Professor, Haskayne School of Business, University of Calgary
  • Grant Strem, Chairman & CEO, Proton Technologies

Recorded on June 23, 2020

What are the roles of policymakers, investors, and other key stakeholders in enabling the clean energy innovation ecosystem to be part of a sustainable economic recovery? What are the short-term opportunities for changes in the current economic environment? How can we enable longer-term economic and environmental sustainability? This expert panel will share perspectives on the factors, beyond technology innovation, required for the success of Alberta’s energy future.

  • Chad Park, Vice President, Sustainability and Citizenship, The Cooperators / Founding Director, Energy Futures Lab (moderator)
  • Jonathan Hackett, Managing Director & Head of Sustainable Finance, BMO Financial Group
  • Jennifer Winter, Assistant Professor and Scientific Director, Energy and Environment Policy research division, School of Public Policy, University of Calgary
  • David James, Associate Deputy Minister, Natural Gas, Government of Alberta

Recorded on: June 30, 2020

Download summary and outcomes from the workshop.


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