China becomes Canada's Top Energy Investor with CNOOC Deal
Nexen's $15.1-billion deal to be acquired by China's state-owned CNOOC Ltd has been approved, officially replacing the US as Canada's biggest energy investor and market.
China's largest overseas takeover in history was approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) Tuesday, who had been considering the transaction since July. It had already been approved by regulators in Canada, the UK, the European Union and China.
The deal includes assets from heavy oil and shale gas in Alberta to offshore leases in the Gulf of Mexico. Over the years, as Canada's extraction technology has improved, its proven oil reserves have reached at least 180 billion barrels, putting it just behind Saudi Arabia and Venezuela. In 2010 and 2011, oil sands alone accounted for one-third of Canada's economic growth, according to the country's national statistical agency.
After President Obama rejected the $7 billion Keystone XL Pipeline, which would have moved oil from Canada and North Dakota to refineries on the Gulf Coast, PM Stephen Harper has said that Canada needs to diversify its energy markets. Though Chinese bids for North American companies haven't always been welcomed, CNOOC's bid will bring the much needed capital to Canada to exploit the oilsands.
In the politically sensitive Gulf of Mexico region, areas of security concern in energy and telecommunications may mean that Nexen will have to dispose of its assets in the US in order for the deal to go through. Those terms have yet to be announced.
The transaction is expected to close the week of Feb. 25.
Hydrostor receives $4m funding for A-CAES facility in Canada
Hydrostor has received $4m funding to develop a 300-500MW Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) facility in Canada.
The funding will be used to complete essential engineering and planning, and enable Hydrostor to plan construction.
The project will be modeled on Hydrostor’s commercially operating Goderich storage facility, providing up to 12 hours of energy storage.
Hydrostor’s A-CAES system supports Canada’s green economic transition by designing, building, and operating emissions-free energy storage facilities, and employing people, suppliers, and technologies from the oil and gas sector.
The Honorable Seamus O’Regan, Jr. Minister of Natural Resources, said: “Investing in clean technology will lower emissions and increase our competitiveness. This is how we get to net zero by 2050.”
A-CAES has the potential to lower greenhouse gas emissions by enabling the transition to a cleaner and more flexible electricity grid. Specifically, the low-impact and cost-effective technology will reduce the use of fossil fuels and will provide reliable and bankable energy storage solutions for utilities and regulators, while integrating renewable energy for sustainable growth.
Curtis VanWalleghem, Hydrostor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are grateful for the federal government’s support of our long duration energy storage solution that is critical to enabling the clean energy transition. This made-in-Canada solution, with the support of NRCan and Sustainable Development Technology Canada, is ready to be widely deployed within Canada and globally to lower electricity rates and decarbonize the electricity sector."
The Rosamond A-CAES 500MW Project is under advanced development and targeting a 2024 launch. It is designed to turn California’s growing solar and wind resources into on-demand peak capacity while allowing for closure of fossil fuel generating stations.
Hydrostor closed US$37 million (C$49 million) in growth financing in September 2019.