Maurice Smith

Maurice is the DOB's technology editor. He has reported on emerging energy industry technology for over 15 years, including more than a decade as editor of New Technology Magazine. Maurice joined JWN in 2001 as a Daily Oil Bulletin reporter after gaining 11 years of experience writing for and editing newspapers in British Columbia.

  • New Tech Touted To Get Oilsands On Road To Net Zero

    As commercial SAGD production enters its 20th year of production in northern Alberta, solvents are emerging as the next commercial advance to tackle the sector’s high emissions intensity bitumen production while cutting costs.

    April 15, 2021, 12 AM MDT

  • Suncor Advancing World’s Biggest Investment In Autonomous Mining Vehicles, Tailings Pond Reclamation

    Suncor Energy Inc. is well on its way to fully automating its 150-vehicle heavy hauler fleet in what will be the biggest investment in the autonomous trucks the world, while advancing its end pit lake mine tailings containment solution, said Jon Mitchell, vice-president, sustainability.

    April 15, 2021, 12 AM MDT

  • Fully Funded, Lithium Producer In Final Drive To Commercialize Oilfield Extraction Technology

    On the heels of an aggregate total funding of $14.3 million through three capital raises over the past four months, E3 Metals Corp.’s primary focus is to demonstrate the continual scale-up of its proprietary oilfield brine lithium extraction technology as it drives toward commercial production in 2024-2025.

    April 9, 2021, 10:32 AM MDT

  • Go Big Or Go Home: Hydrogen Build-out Could Offer Lifeline To Oil Industry

    Canada is now one of more than 72 countries that have committed to net zero emissions by 2050. And one way or the other, that means big changes to the oil and gas industry that today is incompatible with that goal, according to David Layzell, Energy Systems Architect - The Transition Accelerator.

    March 25, 2021, 6 AM MDT

  • Hydrogen Hubs Can Pave Way For Low Carbon Economy

    If Canada is to reach its net-zero greenhouse gas emissions target in 2050, it will need to rely in part on hydrogen to get there, according to some hydrogen specialists.

    February 22, 2021, 12 AM MST

  • Credit Downgrades, New U.S. President Point To Need To Deal With Climate Risk: O’Regan

    S&P Global Ratings’s warning last week of pending oil company credit ratings cuts — which includes Canadian oilsands companies — is just one more indication the world is changing rapidly, and Canada needs to get on board, according to Natural Resources Minister Seamus O’Regan.

    February 2, 2021, 12 AM MST

  • Oil Companies Need To ‘Deal With The Reality’ Of Climate: PETRONAS

    When PETRONAS joined the growing crowd of oil companies pledging deep emissions cuts in November, its reasoning went deeper than falling into line with peers.

    February 1, 2021, 5:02 AM MST

  • Geomechanical Pumped Energy Storage Start-up Leverages Oilpatch Tech To Solve The Dark Lull

    Decarbonization of the electric grid via clean energy resources such as solar and wind is recognized as a relatively easily managed transition — at least until penetration reaches over roughly 80 or even 90 per cent. After that, the variability of renewables — which run out of power in dark and windless periods — can become an issue.

    January 18, 2021, 6 AM MST

  • Whitecap Getting In On Ground Floor Of Potentially Vast CCUS Industry

    As the world transitions to net-zero carbon emissions mid century, one of the greatest underappreciated opportunities to get there may lie in carbon capture, utilization and storage. According to the Global CCS Institute, somewhere between 350 and 1,200 gigatonnes of CO2 will need to be captured and stored this century.

    January 14, 2021, 6 AM MST

  • Better Uses For Bitumen Could Be A Boon For Pipeline Access

    Combusting bitumen products in internal combustion car and truck engines, its major use right now, may amount to sending a much more valuable commodity up in smoke.

    January 13, 2021, 6 AM MST

  • Federal Hydrogen Strategy Sees Central Role For Natural Gas

    Federal energy and environment ministers left no doubt that natural gas would play a prominent role in the federal hydrogen strategy sketched out on Wednesday as part of its climate response and pandemic recovery plans.

    December 17, 2020, 11:15 AM MST

  • Hydrogen Backers Urged To Temper Expectations

    Low-emissions hydrogen production — commonly referred to as “blue” and “green” hydrogen — is being touted as everything from a savior to decarbonizing the economy to a potential godsend for oil and gas producers that can make the pivot from one sun-setting energy source to another sun-rising one.

    December 16, 2020, 8:21 AM MST

  • Canada Seeks To ‘Own The Podium’ On Clean Hydrogen: O’Regan

    A national hydrogen strategy to be released “very soon” will seek to make Canada a world-leading producer of clean hydrogen, Natural Resources Minister Seamus O’Regan said this week.

    December 10, 2020, 11:09 AM MST

  • Companies Tapping Government Supports Get A Jump On Methane Emissions Mitigation

    There are plenty of reasons for oil and gas producers to get an early jump on cutting their greenhouse gas emissions, including access to numerous financial incentives handed out by provincial and federal governments and the ability to design their own mitigation programs.

    December 8, 2020, 7:19 AM MST

  • CNRL, SPOG Realize Cost-Effective Alternative Methane Emissions Reductions Outcomes

    Companies and collaborations that have taken up the opportunity to develop their own fugitive emissions management programs (FEMP) as alternatives to prescribed methods to phasedown methane emissions are showing significant cost savings to meet the required reductions.

    December 1, 2020, 6 AM MST

  • AER Details Comprehensive Methane Leak Surveillance Campaign, Approves Six Alt-FEMP Programs

    The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) has enlisted satellites and other new technologies to ferret out methane emitters to back up stringent new emissions reductions requirements.

    November 24, 2020, 6 AM MST

  • Lithium Start-up Maps $1.1 Billion Petrolithium Extraction Plan

    A preliminary economic assessment of E3 Metals Corp.’s planned 20,000 tonnes per year lithium hydroxide monohydrate project in central Alberta estimates the $602 million (all figures U.S.) facility could offer a pre-tax internal rate of return of 32 per cent over the life of the 20-year project.

    November 23, 2020, 12:37 PM MST

  • Lowest Carbon-Emitting Natural Gas Being Squeezed To Be Even Greener

    Natural gas and its transport medium of liquefied natural gas may be touted as the lowest greenhouse gas emitting fossil fuel, but it’s still not green enough for some customers.

    November 23, 2020, 6 AM MST

  • With Drilling Costs At Record Lows, Ovintiv Accomplishes Deep Spending Cuts

    Ovintiv Inc. posted a net loss in the third quarter of $1.52 billion (all figures US), or $5.85 per share of common stock on higher than expected crude and condensate production during the quarter and continued reductions in capital and costs.

    October 29, 2020, 8:16 PM MDT

  • As GHG-Intensity Gains Prominence, Canadian Producers Straddle Both Ends Of The Divide

    Thanks to strict limits on flaring and venting on the one hand and energy-intensive oilsands production on the other, Canadian oil and gas production sits at either end of the greenhouse gas emissions-intensity spectrum.

    October 21, 2020, 12:39 PM MDT

  • Solar The New King In Bold IEA Net-Zero Emissions Scenario

    Long criticized for not taking proper account for the tide of cheap renewables transforming energy markets and what it would take to meet Paris accord goals, the International Energy Agency (IEA) broke with tradition and produced a net-zero emissions scenario in its annual World Energy Outlook published this week.

    October 15, 2020, 12 AM MDT

  • IEA Examines Role Of Lifestyle Choices In Outlook

    Different lifestyle choices would be necessary in order to reduce emissions, a topic analyzed by the International Energy Agency (IEA) for the first time in this year’s World Energy Outlook assessment.

    October 15, 2020, 12 AM MDT

  • Alberta To Develop Minerals Strategy, Capitalize On Electrification

    Alberta sees new opportunity in a sector that threatens the long-term viability of its core oil and gas industry — electrification and the battery production the transition will require in the not-too-distant future.

    September 24, 2020, 9:53 AM MDT

  • Canada Set To Join Geothermal Country Club With DEEP Success In Saskatchewan

    Canada’s status as the only country on the seismically active Ring of Fire circling the Pacific Ocean without a dedicated geothermal power project could be about to end with a project more than a thousand kilometres from the coast — in the southern prairie of Saskatchewan.

    September 22, 2020, 12 AM MDT

  • Geothermal Green Shoots Portend Potential Companion Sector To Oil And Gas

    Exploitation of geothermal heat goes back millennia, while harnessing of geothermal power goes back over a century. Yet despite its immense geothermal resource potential, Canada has sat on the sidelines of geothermal heat and power development.

    September 21, 2020, 12 AM MDT

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