“The worst year ever” for Canadian oil drillers
IT WAS ONLY SEPTEMBER when an energy industry association declared 2016 the worst year ever for Canadian oil drillers. The Canadian Association of Oil Drilling Contractors made the claim fully three and a half months before the year was out, noting that drilling activity was then at its lowest level in four decades of keeping score. It was a history-making slump in a year that brought little sunshine to any part of Canada’s energy economy. By year’s end, however, a handful of Alberta companies were already looking to hire back a few thousand drill workers as the oil-price bounce was making fields in Alberta, British Columbia and Saskatchewan suddenly appealing again to producers.