We have more than 1,900 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 have 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 2014 through drilling programmes and investment in infrastructure to facilitate new production. We own and operate natural gas processing and sulphur-extraction plants in Alberta and natural gas processing plants in British Colombia. During 2014, we began decommissioning our Burnt Timber gas facility in Alberta. Also in 2014 we entered into a joint venture (Shell interest 50%) to evaluate an investment in an LNG export facility in Kitimat on the west coast of Canada. This project entered FEED in 2014, with the final investment decision expected not earlier than 2016 and cash flows expected early next decade.
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. 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 under construction and is expected to start operation towards the end of 2015.
We also have a number of other minable 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. 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. Construction of our Carmon Creek project (Shell interest 100%), which began in 2013, continues. Carmon Creek is 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 off the east coast of Canada and other acreages in deep-water offshore Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. During 2014, we diluted a 50% interest in the Shelburne project offshore Nova Scotia and retain a 50% interest as operator. We also have a number of exploration licences off the west coast of British Columbia and in the Mackenzie Delta in the Northwest Territories.