Ralston Returns As B.C. Energy Minister; Mandate Will Include Review Of Royalty Credits

Bruce Ralston

Bruce Ralston has been appointed as minister of energy in B.C. once again, as Premier John Horgan late last week unveiled his new cabinet after securing a majority government in late October.

The official name of the ministry is energy, mines and low carbon innovation, a slight change from the previous energy, mines and petroleum resources. Ralston was first appointed energy minister in January after a cabinet shuffle.

Ralston was first elected MLA for Surrey-Whalley in 2005. Aside from the 2020 re-election, he was re-elected in 2009, 2013 and 2017. He was previously the minister of jobs, trade and technology.

The NDP now holds a large majority in B.C. with 57 seats, with the B.C. Liberals holding 28 and the Green Party reduced to two seats from three in the 2017 election.

Mandate

According to Ralston’s mandate letter, he has been tasked with establishing the BC Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy to drive made-in-B.C. innovations such as carbon capture and storage and renewable fuels.

Also, the ministry is to “undertake a review of oil and gas royalty credits to ensure they meet B.C.’s goals for economic development, a fair return on our resources and environmental protection.” Ralston is also to “implement world-leading regulations and technologies to support detection and reduction of harmful methane emissions in the oil and gas sector.”

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