Kim Sturgess, WaterSMART - Water-Energy Nexus


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  • - Mark Twain quote
  • Annual renewable water supply per person is a common indicator of sustainability, stress and scarcity. It recognizes that fresh water, though renewable, is finite over the longer-term . Any population growth generally results in growing resource demands and therefore an increased competition for water amongst an increasing number of users. Such measures give us an approximate carrying capacity of a watershed, river basin, or nation. However, these are simplistic measures and the actual usage patterns and demands will be influenced by geography, culture, level of development and other factors such as the mix and types of industry and agriculture. Environmental needs, such as aquatic ecosystem health, are not considered by these measures. These assume gross average natural supply and any reservation of supplies for instream purposes will change (reduce) the amount available.
  • 20% of the world's drinking water is in Canada, but Alberta accounts for only 2.2% of Canada’s fresh water. While 80% of Alberta's water supply lies in the Northern part of the province, 80% of our water demand comes from the Southern half of the province. These figures from Alberta Environment illustrate that the province does not suffer as much from a shortage of water as it does from an unfortunate geo-spatial distribution of water. SSRB represents only 12% of Alberta’s water resources but accounts for nearly half of allocated water in the province (Including the Red Deer River – 13% of water resources account for 2/3 of allocations). The basin houses over half the province’s population and has a large irrigated agricultural land base Water Short – Considered either exceptionally dry or the area has been closed to new water applications Potentially Water Short – Considered wither relatively dry or the area has a high level of applications compared to natural supply Water Short Areas are the lower reaches of the Bow, Oldman, Red Deer, and South Saskatchewan basins
  • Note: Water Use = Consumption + Losses
  • Water scarcity in the south threatens availability of traditional fresh water supplies for oilfield operations Pressure on the industry will increase to collaborate for greater overall economic and social benefit for Albertans Sector plan for 30% water conservation is expected and may be mandated under W4L ENGOs will significantly increase legal and lobby activities, especially for oil sands Government oversight will increase
  • As the forecast shows, the greatest challenge to achieving the goal of fresh water neutrality will be the continuing demand growth of the oil sands mining, which is forecast to more than double from 2007 to 2020.
  • Preliminary Results Collaborative solutions can result in significant Environmental Net Effect and economic benefits.
  • Kim Sturgess, WaterSMART - Water-Energy Nexus

    1. 1. P. Kim Sturgess, P.Eng. FCAE Canadian Water Summit June 14, 2011 Water – Energy Nexus: The Evolving Story
    2. 2. Think Globally .. Plan Regionally .. Act Locally <ul><li>Whiskey is for Drinking… </li></ul><ul><li>Water is for Fighting Over. </li></ul>
    3. 3. Steven E. Koonin, Under Secretary for Science, U.S. Department of Energy Total = 12,500 km3
    4. 4. Steven E. Koonin, Under Secretary for Science, U.S. Department of Energy
    5. 5. Steven E. Koonin, Under Secretary for Science, U.S. Department of Energy
    6. 6. Estimated annual world water use by sector 1900 to 2000 – another 40% increase by 2020* Courtesy: Dr. A. Zehnder AWRI *Source: United Nations Environment Programme
    7. 7. Do we have enough WATER to grow the food??? Steven E. Koonin, Under Secretary for Science, U.S. Department of Energy
    8. 8. Steven E. Koonin, Under Secretary for Science, U.S. Department of Energy
    9. 9. Water Resources in Canada and Alberta Environmental and apportionment requirements are not considered by this measure. Source: Population Action International , 1997 (Courtesy of Wendy Brown, TEPCA)
    10. 10. Canadians do not show up well on OECD Environmental Water Indicators Trend Since 1980, overall water use in Canada has increased by 25.7%. This is five times higher than the overall OECD increase of 4.5%. In contrast, nine OECD nations were able to decrease their overall water use since 1980 (Sweden, the Netherlands, the United States, the United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, Luxembourg, Poland, Finland and Denmark).
    11. 11. Perception that we squander water exacerbates issue of water use in resource extraction <ul><li>“ Wild unregulated pillaging of the environment at the expense of the First Nations … that is what the Europeans think of us.” </li></ul><ul><li>Minister Rob Renner (Chamber of Commerce May 25, 2010) </li></ul><ul><li>“ More and more our investment partners are trying to steer us away from investments in oil sands and coal technologies.” </li></ul><ul><li>Scott MacDonald, Partner Emerald Ventures (June 12, 2010) </li></ul>Protestors demonstrate outside the U.K. headquarters of BP in London on Sept. 1, 2009. Protestors earlier targeted the head office of a leading bank, demonstrating against the bank's investments in fossil-fuel projects, especially funding for the coal industry and tar-sands extraction in Canada.
    12. 12. Food Energy Water Tradeoff Food Water Energy This is the challenge of Public Policy in Alberta
    13. 13. Adaptation strategies are very different North and South
    14. 14. Estimated Annual Water Use was 3.2 billion cubic metres in 2005 69% 6% 5% 6% 14%
    15. 15. Oil and Gas Industry most likely to adapt Challenges: South Saskatchewan: Scarcity. This industry usually last priority for water Lower Athabasca: Social license to operate
    16. 16. Alberta Water Allocations and Estimated Use Source: Alberta Environment
    17. 17. Water use in Agriculture and Energy
    18. 18. Annual water consumption forecast for power generation in Alberta* *by type of power generation Note that water consumption scale begins at 100,000,000 m3
    19. 19. Upstream Petroleum Industry Fresh Water Demand Forecast Extraction Only OS- Tailings Integrated OS - Tailings Extraction Only OS – Proc.& Other Integrated OS - Cooling Note: Fresh Water Demand for the Oil Sands operations is the water withdrawn from the River; does not include fresh water collected on site
    20. 20. South Saskatchewan Region Estimated Water Use by Sector Estimated Water Use 2.4 billion m 3 per year
    21. 21. The Surface Water Supply in the North is large Source: Alberta Environment
    22. 22. Athabasca has a large Environmental Base Flow Source: Alberta Environment
    23. 23. Lower Athabasca Region Estimated Water Use by Sector Estimated Water Use 0.124 billion m 3 per year* * 5% of water use in South Saskatchewan region
    24. 24. Challenge of Tailings Ponds remains
    25. 25. The Oil Sands Leadership Initiative Alberta Environment, Alberta Energy and SRD participate as observers Five founding companies :
    26. 26. Major investments in Technology in Oil Sands Advanced boiler technology that could take untreated (or lesser-treated) water directly Ceramic membranes for more efficient SAGD de-oiling & filtering Tailings recovery technology allows for faster reclamation of tailings areas and higher water recycle rates
    27. 27. <ul><li>Challenge: </li></ul><ul><li>Currently operators in the oil sands region are working independently to solve their individual water sourcing and disposal needs . </li></ul><ul><li>Project Objective: </li></ul><ul><li>Lower the regional environmental impact (water, land, wastes, GHGs) </li></ul><ul><li>Project Description </li></ul><ul><li>Examine the potential to reduce environmental impact through regional collaboration. </li></ul><ul><li>Potential Benefits </li></ul><ul><li>Lower regional Environmental Net Effect </li></ul><ul><li>Reduce tailings liability </li></ul><ul><li>Establish reliable SAGD water sources </li></ul><ul><li>Accelerate tailings reclamation </li></ul>Regional Water Solutions Project* Regional Alternative Sub-Regional Alternative *Diagram for illustration purposes only - may not show all current, planned, or proposed projects
    28. 28. Water: The Key to Our Sustainable Future For more information: [email_address] Kim.Sturgess