Markham on Energy

Eco-activist arguments against Keystone XL pipeline are flawed

Eco-activist arguments against Keystone XL pipeline are flawed

If Canadian producers keep investing in new technology, Keystone XL could lower GHG intensity of heavy crudes refined on Gulf Coast In this Feb. 25, 2015 column I argued that a key point was being lost in the Keystone XL debate: Texas Gulf Coast refineries need 2.7 million b/d of heavy crude oil and they […]

CAPP unleashes PR popgun when it really needs cannons

CAPP unleashes PR popgun when it really needs cannons

Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) should get down in trenches with Big Green opponents This is a long read, but an important one because I’ve tried to explain why the Canadian oil and gas industry is such a wretched communicator, why it has consistently fumbled the politics, messaging, and execution for every energy project […]

Environmental activist a mistake as Alberta Energy chief of staff

Environmental activist a mistake as Alberta Energy chief of staff

McCuaig-Boyd’s judgement as Alberta energy minister already being called into question Regular readers will be shocked by this admission, but I occasionally get it wrong. This is one of those times. The column dates from June 11, 2015, shortly after the Alberta NDP formed government and Premier Rachel Notley’s energy policy direction wasn’t yet clear. […]

100 scientists are wrong about the Alberta oil sands

100 scientists are wrong about the Alberta oil sands

Coal, not Alberta oil sands, should be focus of scientists’ campaign This is my column from June 11, 2015. My thinking has evolved quite a bit because of my work on the Energy Transition, but one thing hasn’t changed: Climate policies should concentrate on the low-hanging fruit, like coal for power generation (where natural gas […]

Alberta must stop shying away from oil sands, pipeline politics and engage rest of Canada

Alberta must stop shying away from oil sands, pipeline politics and engage rest of Canada

National energy strategy gives Alberta framework within which to work out compromise between energy development, climate change I’ve never understood why so many Albertans complain about the “politics” around energy, as if we could someone wave a magic wand and make the oil sands and pipelines apolitical. This is such a silly attitude. Civic politicians will […]

Oil sands opponents can be SUCH snowflakes; Linda McQuaig’s comments demand to be debated

Oil sands opponents can be SUCH snowflakes; Linda McQuaig’s comments demand to be debated

Linda McQuaig is a long-time opponent of Alberta oil sands, her comments surprised no one As a political centrist who supports both oil and gas and clean energy technologies, I’m often in the middle of these “fossil fuels vs. renewables” debates. Frankly, the eco-activists and the energy boosters both deserve to be labelled “snowflakes” – […]

Open letter to Heather Boyd: Ezra doesn’t deserve media accreditation

Open letter to Heather Boyd: Ezra doesn’t deserve media accreditation

“Bottom line, as an online journalist I had to be vetted by the Alberta government and I have yet to hear a single good argument why Ezra shouldn’t be as well.” – Markham Hislop Dear Ms. Boyd. Since launching online news site Beacon News in 2008, I have been accredited as a journalist by many governments, organizations, […]

Renewable energy part of earning social licence for Alberta oil sands?

Renewable energy part of earning social licence for Alberta oil sands?

Renewable energy – primarily wind – already cost-competitive without subsidies in Alberta, says BluEarth CEO Calgary entrepreneur Kent Brown has been named Clean Energy Canada’s “Innovator of the Year” for 2015. Not bad for a guy who manages renewable energy assets whose value is expected to reach $650 million next year. And who expects Calgary […]

Alberta Wilderness Association, Friends of Science like bickering kids

Alberta Wilderness Association, Friends of Science like bickering kids

Alberta Wilderness Association complains to APEGA about Friends of Science membership I’m no friend of Friends of Science. Their climate denial is partisan and silly. But they do have a right to their opinions. And environmental groups shouldn’t try to silence them with attacks on their professional credentials and reputation. “A pox on both their […]

California – The one place Alberta oil sands crude isn’t ‘dirty’

California – The one place Alberta oil sands crude isn’t ‘dirty’

Alberta oil sands not discriminated against by California Low Carbon Fuel Standards program It’s ironic that not far from Hollywood, and the residences of American film star eco-activists, sits the Placerita field, which produces the most carbon-intensive oil in North America. No one protests for Placerita to be shut down. One reason for that is […]