THIS IS MY FAVOURITE time of the year— not because it’s officially golf season (though that’s nice too), but because it’s petroleum show season. I’ve just finished up with the Houston, Calgary and St. John’s shows, and I have to tell you… I’m pumped. Mothballed projects are coming back to life. New prospects are being investigated. Money is being committed to exploration and development. There’s just so much excitement in the industry right now!
I know the naysayers are dying to jump in with their predictably negative comments. I can hear them now, spouting off about the Muskrat Falls hydroelectric project that’s supposedly going to bankrupt Newfoundland and Labrador once and for all. My response to that? Stop being so short-sighted. People once said that about Churchill Falls too, and look at that ROI that’s been generated by that project (it might not have all come to this province, but the returns have been there—and the deal we made for ourselves is much better this time around).
Here’s my prediction about Muskrat Falls: I believe that within a very short period of time, we’re going to see a constant flow of revenue from Muskrat Falls and that it’s going to be the linchpin project that powers the entire Atlantic economy. And just wait until 2041 when the Upper Churchill contract expires and all that power reverts to Newfoundland and Labrador control. Not only will we own it all, but we’ll have options for transporting that power to market. I’ve been around a long time and let me tell you… 23 years goes by pretty quick.
In the meantime, we have an impressive list of mega-projects either underway or about to be launched (you’ll read more about them in just a few pages). The resources are here. The major players are here. The timing is perfect. Bottom line: The future is very bright for Atlantic Canada. Question is: are we brave enough to step into the light? Let’s bury our lobster pot tendencies and seize the day. Onward and upward, I say.