A Calgary based company plans to invest $2 billion in an upgrading facility in the Industrial Heartland, creating more than 2,000 construction jobs and 200 full time positions.

This investment into Premier Rachel Notley’s Made-in-Alberta energy strategy is being made by Value Creation Inc. (VCI) and its wholly owned subsidiary Value Chain Solutions Inc.

“We’re taking the bull by the horns and fighting to get full value for our oil. Albertans have been talking about this for decades, and we’re not content to sit on the sidelines and let good jobs and investment pass Alberta by for places like Louisiana. That has happened for too long and it has got to stop. We’re making sure the next generation of Albertans have the opportunities they deserve in a stronger, more resilient, more diversified province,” said Premier, Rachel Notley.

The announcement made on Tuesday, January 22, is just the first of several new projects being made possible through the Made-in-Alberta strategy to produce more upgrades and refining to the oil and gas resources.

The planned facility will upgrade diluted oil sands bitumen into a higher value crude blend that will flow through pipelines easier. This not only helps the industry save money because it will reduce the need for diluent, it will also increase pipeline capacity by roughly 30 per cent and allow more refineries worldwide to accept Alberta’s oil sands bitumen.

“This government’s Made-in-Alberta upgrading program is a crucial element to ensuring these value-add investments happen in Alberta. Alberta’s Industrial Heartland is a key economic driver of the province’s economy, with potential for $30 billion in new investment by 2030. Upgrading more of our resources here at home means more jobs and more investment in our local communities, with new value chains that will help diversify our economy for generations to come,” said Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Association executive director, Mark Plamondon.

Construction has already begun in the Heartland with some foundational infrastructure in place and design work almost complete. The facility should be operational in 2022 and (once completed) will become the first commercial-scale partial upgrader in the world to use this new technology, which VCI has developed over several years.

The province will support the project through a $440-million loan, as discussed in a letter of intent, subject to reaching a final agreement.

“We here at Value Creation Inc. and Value Chain Solutions Inc. look forward to building upon Premier Rachel Notley’s vision of diversifying our energy markets and maximizing the value of the resources owned by Albertans. Our project is going to create good, long-term jobs with game-changing technology for low-cost upgrading and strong environmental performance,” said Value Creation Inc. and Value Chain Solutions Inc. CEO and chairman Columba Yeung.

This technology should also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 16 per cent per barrel, when compared to how bitumen is extracted now.

MORE ON VCI AND THE PROJECT

  • Calgary based VCI was founded in 1999 and has almost 1,200 square kilometres of oil sands land holdings in Alberta.
  • The Heartland complex in the first phase of the Value Chain Solutions will use 77,500 barrels-per-day of diluted bitumen to produce a medium synthetic crude oil and an ultra low sulfur diesel. This cleander burning transportation fuel is used in Alberta and worldwide.
  • VCI has a plan to engage with Indigenous communities across the region regarding employment, contracting and long term alliance opportunities.
  • This project could generate roughly $2.5 billion in revenue to the province over its 30 year life.
  • It is estimated that Strathcona County could receive roughly $280 million in municipal tax revenue over the project’s life span.