Highlighting the industry

The Williston Basin Petroleum Conference returns to Saskatchewan for 2019

The Williston Basin Petroleum Conference kicks off its 27thyear from May 27-30, 2019, and event organizers have completely reimagined its purpose and intent. 

In a period of profound challenges faced by industry – pipeline and transport capacity issues, emerging new methane emissions standards in Canada, water use, rapidly falling recovery rates alongside high drilling costs, and CO2use and availability – conference organizers began to look at developing a conference and technical trade show less focused on sales and equipment, and instead focused on business development, emerging technologies, and company innovation.

“Saskatchewan already has two substantive trade shows – in Weyburn in June and in Lloydminster in September – that deal with the suppliers and distributors,” notes Dan MacLean, the CEO of the Petroleum Technology Research Centre (PTRC), which directs the Williston Basin Conference. “It’s one of the differences between Regina and Bismarck when the Williston Basin is hosted north of the border. On even-number years, when the conference is in North Dakota, the trade component is enormous.  We’ve come to realize that the event in Canada needs to be more business and technology directed.”

Norm Sacuta, the director of communication at the PTRC agrees.  He’s seen the conference evolve in Canada over the last 10 years.

“We will still have an important trade show component at Williston Basin.  That will never change,” notes Sacuta. “But a preference will be given to companies that have innovative technologies that will address current and future challenges of the oil industry in Saskatchewan.  The conference will focus on Saskatchewan’s heavy and light oil challenges, and on the rising importance of CO2availability and use in tight, light and heavy oil operations.”

The reinvigorated focus will include discussions and presentations on pressing issues like flow line and pipeline integrity, CO2availability and use in tight formations, artificial intelligence and block chain use in oil and gas, and managing methane emissions – all are planned in presentations and panel discussions.  

An exciting new component to Williston Basin 2019 will be a one-day business conference on May 28ththat will include high-level panels and discussions that include speakers from industry, banking, government, regulatory bodies, and politics.  

Former Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall will speaking at the Williston Basin Petroleum Conference this May in Saskatchewan.

“We are very excited to have the former premier of Saskatchewan, Brad Wall, for a question-and-answer session at the business conference,” notes MacLean.  “We have several more high-level speakers from Calgary-based investment firms, our own Minister of Energy and Resources Bronwyn Eyre, and executives from the oil and gas industry.”

The conference will again kick off with two sessions of the Core Workshop on May 27th providing scientific and geological analyses of drilling cores from SE Saskatchewan that will be of particular interest for industry participants. It is hosted by the Saskatchewan Geological Society.  

The technical conference includes important research applicable to heavy oil fields in Saskatchewan, to tight/light formation in the Bakken and Viking, and will include work by such groups as North Dakota’s Energy and Environmental Research Centre and the Saskatchewan Research Council.

Details on registration for the conference can be found at www.wbpc.ca/.

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