We hold more than 2,100 mineral leases in Canada, mainly in Alberta and British Columbia. We produce and market natural gas, NGL, synthetic crude oil and bitumen. In addition, we hold significant exploration acreage offshore. Bitumen is a very heavy crude oil produced through conventional methods as well as through enhanced oil recovery methods. Synthetic crude oil is produced by mining bitumen-saturated sands, extracting the bitumen from the sands, and transporting it to a processing facility where hydrogen is added to produce a wide range of feedstocks for refineries.
Gas and liquids-rich shale
We continued to develop fields in Alberta and British Columbia during 2013 through drilling programmes and investment in infrastructure to facilitate new production. We own and operate four natural gas processing and sulphur-extraction plants in Alberta.
Synthetic crude oil
We operate the Athabasca Oil Sands Project (AOSP) in north-east Alberta as part of a joint arrangement (Shell interest 60%). The bitumen is transported by pipeline for processing at the Scotford Upgrader, which is also operated by Shell and located in the Edmonton area. In 2013, the first phase of the AOSP debottlenecking project came online, adding an additional 10 thousand boe/d of capacity at peak production. The Quest carbon capture and storage project (Shell interest 60%), which is expected to capture and permanently store more than 1 mtpa of CO2 from the Scotford Upgrader, is currently under construction and is expected to start operation towards the end of 2015.
Shell also holds a number of other mineable oil sands leases in the Athabasca region with expiry dates ranging from 2018 to 2025. By completing a certain minimum level of development prior to their expiry, leases may be extended.
We produce and market bitumen in the Peace River area of Alberta, and have a steam-assisted gravity drainage project in operation near Cold Lake, Alberta. Additional heavy oil resources and advanced recovery technologies are under evaluation on approximately 1,200 square kilometres in the Grosmont oil sands area, also in northern Alberta. During 2013, we announced our final investment decision to proceed with our Carmon Creek project (Shell interest 100%), an in-situ project that is expected to produce up to 80 thousand boe/d.
We have a 31.3% interest in the Sable Offshore Energy project, a natural-gas complex offshore eastern Canada. We also have a 100% operating interest in frontier deep-water acreage offshore Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, and a number of exploration licences off the west coast of British Columbia and in the Mackenzie Delta in the Northwest Territories.
Map of North-east USA and Canada
Map of Alaska, Yukon and Northwest Territories
Map of Alberta and British Columbia
Map of Nova Scotia