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Saskatchewan companies receive first portion of federal funding for abandoned oil well cleanup

More Lloydminster oil and gas workers will be heading back to work as the first round of oil site reclamation applications have been approved by the Government of Saskatchewan.

The province says 22 packages from their Accelerated Site Closure Program will provide 50 oil and gas companies with abandonment work in wells across Lloydminster, Kindersley, Swift Current and Estevan. The companies will work to clean around 300 abandoned oil wells, 300 flowlines, decommission 75 facilities and other activities related to site reclamation.

The value of this first set of work packages is $12 million and encompasses six different operators.

Lloydminster MLA Colleen Young says she’s glad to see Lloydminster and other Saskatchewan service companies get back in the field.

“The ASCP supports one of our hardest-hit sectors, and our government has diligently engaged with the oil and gas sector to develop a program that gets Saskatchewan companies back to work.”

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The province notes several Indigenous-owned service companies have been pre-qualified to work within the program, including some in Onion Lake.

Up to $100 million in funding will be given to Saskatchewan service companies in the first phase of the program. The province says they will roll out funds in a timely manner and the next phases of the program are under development.

“We took the necessary time to develop a strategic program, which has been well-received by the oil and gas sector, and are delivering it in a timely, efficient way,” Energy and Resources Minister Bronwyn Eyre says.  “This first parcel of work projects incorporates every oil region in the province.  Most importantly, it gets the Saskatchewan service sector back to work.”

The ASCP was launched on May 22, 2020 and will run until 2022. It will access up to $400 million, over two years, through the federal COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. It is being overseen by the Ministry of Energy and Resources and delivered in partnership with the Saskatchewan Research Council.

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