Wednesday afternoon, the Alberta government approved Suncor’s bitumen extraction project, Meadow Creek West. The project is a joint venture between Suncor and Nexen Energy ULC.

Suncor applied for approval to the Alberta Energy Regulator in October 2017. On December 9, 2019, they submitted an application for Meadow Creek East. 

The projects would be independent, but both would utilize steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) technology creating more jobs with Suncor.

“Enabling projects like Meadow Creek West demonstrates our commitment to encouraging investment and creating good-paying jobs in our province,” Energy Minister Sonya Savage said in the news release.

Following the approval, Suncor stated that they would not make any decisions about proceeding with either Meadow Creek project until 2023.

If the project does move forward, the site will be located approximately 30 kilometres south of Fort McMurray.  The construction alone would generate an estimated 3,200 jobs in Fort McMurray

Suncor has said that the project would produce 40,000 barrels of bitumen per day and create 200 new jobs. They expect it to operate for at least 40 years.

In addition to the central processing facility, the site will contain a number of associated facilities, wells, pads, stormwater ponds, roads and additional infrastructure.