Car bon Price

Alberta Oil - - FOCUS ON REFINING -

A fed­er­ally im­posed car­bon price—whether it’s Trudeau’s or that of a fu­ture gov­ern­ment—could also fa­vor the eco­nom­ics of in­vest­ing in an up­grader to re­fine Cana­dian oil at home. A car­bon tax could be levied against ocean-trans­port emis­sions, ei­ther at Cana­dian ports or their for­eign points of ori­gin. If Cana­dian car­bon pric­ing also waived the trans­port tax for crudes such as Al­berta’s that had al­ready paid a car­bon levy, it would hike the cost of feed­stock from coun­tries such as Nige­ria that have mas­sive pol­lu­tion pro­files. Such solutions are still very much up in the air as the de­tails of Canada’s car­bon plan de­velop.

Cur­rently, the only Cana­dian crude oil that pays a car­bon price is Al­berta’s, and the provin­cial NDP gov­ern­ment is com­mit­ted to raising those costs. In ad­di­tion, Ot­tawa will soon im­pose a car­bon price that will reach $50 per ton by 2022—a cost that might not be ap­plied to im­ported crudes at all or to the same de­gree. Fur­ther­more, up­graders are big car­bon emit­ters and mit­i­gat­ing op­tions such as car­bon cap­ture and stor­age are ex­pen­sive. Im­port­ing oil from coun­tries that have no car­bon pric­ing poli­cies—and whose oil pro­duc­ers fly un­der the radar of Cana­dian en­vi­ron­men­tal protesters—is still good for the re­finer’s bottom line.

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