Oil Sands Expo

2023 Oil Sands Conference

Be sure to book your ticket to attend the 2023 Oil Sands Conference and Keynote Luncheons. This is your opportunity hear from industry and government leaders on a wide variety of important topics facing the sector.

Contact us today to learn how your organization can be featured at the Oil Sands Conference.

Leading Through Innovation. Plan to Attend the Oil Sands Conference.

Join Industry & Government Leaders, Thought Leaders, And Innovators, As We Come Together To Explore The Future Of Canada’s Oil Sands Industry.

Conference registration includes: two day conference package, two keynote luncheons, networking breaks and the industry reception (September 14, trade show floor) and unlimited access to the trade show. NEW FOR 2023, your conference registration includes a 1 year Canadian Heavy Oil Association membership. Registration fee does not include golf, workshops or The BIG Party.


* Program subject to updates without notice.

September 13

8:30 am – 8:55 am

Registration and Light Breakfast

8:55 am – 9:00 am


His Worship Sandy Bowman, Mayor, Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo 

9:00 am – 9:10 am

Welcome Remarks

Honourable Brian Jean, Minister of Energy, Government of Alberta

9:10 am 9:30 am

Opening Keynote – Oil Sands Resilience Through an Uncertain Energy Transition

presenter: Thomas LilesVP Upstream Research, Rystad Energy

The pace of energy transition has been front of mind for the upstream industry since emerging from the depths of the pandemic. This session will review global oil demand scenarios and highlight the long-term resilience of the oil sands, where production is set to exceed 3.5 million barrels per day by the late 2020’s thanks to a robust pipeline of low-breakeven expansions. The session will conclude with a review of upstream decarbonization strategies and the critical role of CCS in the North American context.

9:30 am – 10:30 am

Session 1: The Currency of Innovation – The Alberta Advantage

Alberta has long been known as a key centre of innovation. During this session, the panel will discuss how clean energy innovation can help regional companies expand beyond Alberta’s borders and propel them into international markets. Alberta’s energy sector is one of agility, resiliency, and evolution – and coupled with industry’s strong record for ESG, Alberta companies have a lot to offer.

moderator: Kevin Weidlich, President & CEO, Fort McMurray Wood Buffalo Economic Development & Tourism

panel members:

Kara Johnston, Technical Development Advisor, Alberta Innovates

Wade Eno, CEO & President, Onsite3D

Jay Notay, President and CEOKeyano College

10:30 am – 10:45 am

Networking Break

10:45 am – 11:45 am

Session 2: Nuclear – Is it the Oil Sands Emissions Reduction Magic Bullet?

Some consider nuclear to be the magic bullet. Small Modular Reactors are not our grandparents nuclear reactors, but do they carry the same stigma? There is no doubt SMR’s are a clean energy option for heavy industries including oil sands operations; but they are not without barriers. This esteemed panel of experts will discuss the politics, the technologies, the timelines, the budgets and the human resource factors all affecting the future of nuclear in Canada. Featuring nuclear experts from across Canada, the panel will deep dive into the world of nuclear and the technology of small modular reactors and how we might see nuclear in Alberta sooner than you think.


Nathan Tedford, Director, Nuclear Technologies, HATCH

Basma Amine, Senior Manager, New Nuclear Development, OPG

11:45 am – 12:00 pm

Networking Break

12:00 pm – 1:30 pm

Industry Keynote Luncheon – Sustainability Meets Prospersity

     Opening Remarks: Jason Evanson, CEO, Ronald McDonald House

     In conversation with:

     Norrie Ramsay, EVP Upstream – Thermal, Major Projects & Offshore, Cenovus

     Wes Jickling, Vice President, Technology Development and COSIA, Pathways Alliance

Luncheon tickets can be purchased separately.

1:30 pm – 1:45 pm

Networking Break

Session 3: Oil Sands and Carbon Capture and Sequestration – Getting it Right 

presented by:

1:45 pm – 1:50 pm

CCS is critical to Canada’s oil sands, representing a key near-term pathway for radically decarbonizing upstream operations, so that we can meet our emissions reduction targets and reset our global reputation as innovative and responsible leaders.  If you are curious about the challenges and opportunities facing these projects, along with the steps being taken, let’s connect at this session. 

Valerie Stewart, VP of Business Development, Scovan Inc. and CHOA board member, will introduce and MC the afternoon session.

1:50 pm – 2:50 pm

Part 1: Oil Sands and Carbon Capture and Sequestration – Getting it Right, presented by CHOA

Presentations by International CCS Knowledge Centre’s James Fann and Mitsubishi Heavy Industry’s Paul Pasteris will highlight our industries proven capabilities when it comes to delivering on the technical aspects of CCS projects when it comes to project design at the surface, in terms of integrated capture technologies, and the subsurface, in terms of project injectivity, capacity and operations.

moderator: Valerie Stewart, Vice President, Business Development, Scovan

panel members: 

Anne Halladay, Director, Risk & MMV, Carbon Alpha

Brad Hayes, President & CEO, Petrel Robertson Consulting Ltd.

Paul G. PasterisGeneral Manager, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Low Carbon Solutions Canada, ULC.

2:50 pm – 3:35 pm

Part 2: Oil Sands and Carbon Capture and Sequestration – Getting it Right, presented by CHOA

A fireside conversation with Pathways Alliance’s Amberly Dooley and industry advisor Diana McQueen to illuminate the current state of policy and regulation as they relate to project approvals, timelines and commercial viability.  

     Amberly Dooley, Director, Policy, Pathways Alliance

     Diana McQueen, Senior Policy & Strategic Advisor

3:35 pm – 4:30 pm

Part 3: Oil Sands and Carbon Capture and Sequestration – Getting it Right, presented by CHOA

A conversation between Sanjiv and Wes on the positive steps operators are taking.

     Sanjiv Save, Global Managing Director, Oil & Gas, HATCH

      Wes Jickling, Vice President, Technology Development and COSIA, Pathways Alliance

September 14

8:30 am – 9:00 am

Registration & Light Breakfast

9:00 am – 9:30 am

Keynote Presentation – The Role of Generative AI in the Future of Oil Sands

presenter: Nick Ponot, Associate Partner, Energy & Mining, IBM

The oil sands industry is hyper focused on safety, production, and sustainability objectives. Technology adoption in advanced analytics, AI and cloud computing has become entrenched in day-to-day operations, but what’s next? Operators and contractors have vast data sets and warehouses full of documentation Regulatory Reports, Operational Data, Field Level Risk Assessments (FLRAs), Job Safety Analysis (JSA’s), Incident Reports and countless more. What if you could leverage decades of information to mitigate the risk of a fatality, ensure that each of your workers come home safe or improve operational performance?

 The next stage on the digital journey is upon us, Generative AI and large language models are available to support Heavy Industries like the Oil Sands to unleash insights and performance never thought possible. 

 This talk will provide a high-level overview of Generative AI, a strategic approach to implementation, identifying low risk quick wins and ultimately allowing the audience to conceive the art of the possible in unlocking operational performance and increasing operational safety. This will be achieved by reducing the time to perform tasks, accessibility of information and the ability to realize optimal performance based on actual operational data.

9:30 am – 10:30 am

Session 4: The Future of the Oil Sands Workforce

As the sector moves to automation, AI, robotics, digital twinning, data analytics and other exciting technologies, the nature of the workforce changes too. During this session, we’ll explore how to better leverage human talents and remove repetitive tasks that can be done by machine. If we add in the exciting careers that will develop as we move the industry towards net emissions; we can create an exciting industry for young people, (including foreign students) who are more interested in technology, computer science, and analytics than their parents oil sands industry? 

moderator: Mara CairoProduct Owner – Advanced Technology, Amii

panel members:

Crystal Lui, Associate Partner, IBM Client Innovation Center Western Canada

Rob HodgsonVP – Global Business Development & Partnerships, Correct-AI

10:30 am – 11:45 am

Session 5: Exploring the Future of Indigenous Asset Ownership

The idea of this session is around the idea of expanding the role of First Nations & Metis and their businesses to not only provide services, but to become asset owners. Building on opportunities like the Fort McKay First Nation (FMFN) and the Mikisew Cree First Nation’s 49% equity position in Suncor’s East Tank Farm Development and 23 First Nation and Metis communities acquiring an 11.5% ownership interest in the Enbridge Athabasca Liquids Pipeline system, the largest Indigenous investment in the energy industry to date. This panel will discuss the future of asset ownership, the barriers, and how we move forward with new prospects.

moderator: Stephen Buffalo, President and Chief Executive Officer, Indian Resource Council Canada

panel members:

Dan Gallagher, President and CEO, Mikisew Group of Companies

Ron Quintal, President, Fort McKay Metis Nation

Ted Bauer, Vice President, Engagement and External Relations, Alberta Indigenous Opportunities Corporation

Sam Munckhof-SwainIndigenous Economic Partnerships – Liquids Pipelines, Enbridge Pipelines

11:45 am – 12:00 pm

Networking Break

12:00 pm – 1:30 pm

Keynote Luncheon featuring Chief Raymond Powder, Fort McKay First Nation

United Way Annual Update: Cathy SteevesExecutive Director, United Way Fort McMurray and Wood Buffalo

opening remarks: Stuart Randell, Chief Investment Officer, Fort McKay Landing

Luncheon tickets can be purchased separately.

2:00 pm

Networking Reception – Trade Show floor