The Petroleum Services Association of Canada (PSAC) recently met with business leaders gathered and hosted by the Vaughan Chamber of Commerce for a roundtable discussion. The conversation focused on the benefits to all Canadians of supporting the energy industry.
National Trucking Week 2015: We’ll Take Truck Drivers over Driverless Trucks
News articles earlier this year about driverless trucks operating in Nevada and the Alberta oil sands under restricted conditions set off speculation about whether we’ll need truck drivers within a few decades – and whether autonomous vehicles are an answer to the driver shortage.
National Trucking Week, celebrated September 6 to 12 this year, is a good time to consider the truck driving occupation and what we can do to encourage the best candidates to enter a demanding and essential career that requires judgment, planning, know-how and a host of other skills. Unlike autonomous vehicles, drivers may be called upon to react quickly to unexpected incidents on the road, bringing all their varied experience about their equipment, the load they’re hauling, and road conditions into play. The question is, is the trucking industry appealing to enough quality candidates to meet our needs today – and in the future?
Planners of large-scale projects in Northern BC are realizing the pool of available drivers is diminishing at a time when they need it to grow. A report developed by a liquefied natural gas (LNG) provincial working group identifies “truck driver” is the 7th most in-demand occupation to complete these projects.
Today, there are about 300,000 truck drivers in Canada – that’s 1 percent of the population and 1.5 percent of the labour force. In BC, most truck drivers are male (96 percent), and nearly half (47 percent) are between the ages of 45 and 64. With less interest in the career from young men, the traditional labour pool for trucking, governments are funding programs to train women and Aboriginal candidates to be competent for the occupation.
The type of training truck drivers receive varies, as there is no training standard for the occupation. Traditionally, driver candidates often started work on farms, as family members or employees, and honed their technical and mechanical skills on heavy machinery. The in-house training culture that existed during supply and price management of the industry diminished as trucking became deregulated in the 1990s. High school graduation, and sometimes not even that, became the prerequisite to become a truck driver, along with a Class 1 licence. Part of the problem is that truck driving was – and still is, inaccurately – considered an “unskilled” trade because no certification requirement exists. Expert veteran drivers, trainees who’ve invested time and money in reputable, quality training programs, and trucking employers are justified in scoffing at that label.
In fact, a new National Occupational Standard (NOS) for the Commercial Vehicle Operator (Truck Driver) published by the Trucking Human Resources Council in May 2015 puts paid to the description. The list of skills and competencies required runs to 68 pages and includes workplace/interpersonal (“soft”) skills; non-driving job functions and equipment operation; and driving-specific competencies. And these are the core occupational competencies only, not including additional skills and knowledge needed to, for example, operate specialized equipment like the oversize/overweight vehicles that haul heavy cargo, including equipment used at industrial sites.
The NOS is a foundational document, developed with the participation of drivers, fleets, industry experts and trucking associations across Canada; trucking companies and driver training schools would benefit from making it their guidebook. To seat their trucks with the type of drivers who’ve mastered its competencies, companies must accept that some level of participation in training is required, whether that means through in-house programs to “finish” recent graduates from truck driver training programs or providing mentors to new recruits. Many larger companies are already doing this. The rewards range from better-qualified, safer drivers operating their trucks to improved retention – and a stronger reputation with clients for professionalism, safety and reliability.
Ideally, recognition of the importance of the truck driving profession, better training, and a commitment by companies to investing in entry-level drivers would influence more young people to consider a driving career. During National Trucking Week – every week - we salute those who already have.
 Trucking HR Canada, National Occupational Standard: Commercial Vehicle Operator (Truck Driver), May 2015, p. 5.
More from Industry News
The Impact Assessment Agency of Canada (the Agency) has accepted an initial project description for the proposed Cedar LNG Project, located near Kitimat, British Columbia.
Petro-Canada Lubricants, a HollyFrontier business, has expanded its TRAXON and DURON product lines with the launches of DURON Advanced 5W-30 and TRAXON Synthetic 75W-85. The introduction of the new oils demonstrate continued product innovation from Petro-Canada Lubricants to help fleets meet new and emerging market trends.
The initial 15% oil price jump resulting from the attacks in Saudi Arabia will not have any impact on the trajectory of 2019 U.S. shale production, IHS Markit says.
Recently at the SIS Global Forum 2019, Schlumberger, Chevron and Microsoft announced the industry's first three-party collaboration to accelerate creation of innovative petrotechnical and digital technologies.
TransAlta Corporation has introduced its Clean Energy Investment Plan, which includes converting its existing Alberta coal assets to natural gas and advancing its leadership position in renewable energy. The total cost of the plan is expected to be approximately $2 billion which includes approximately $800 million of renewable energy projects already under construction.
Schlumberger announced that its technology partnership with Microsoft to develop cloud-native solutions on Microsoft Azure and Azure Stack has been strengthened by new deployments being introduced at the SIS Global Forum 2019 in Monaco.
A persistent oversupply of natural gas will drive the 2020 average price at the Henry Hub down (in real terms) to a level not seen in decades, according to new report from IHS Markit. The oversupply—to be reinforced by a new surge in associated gas production from the Permian basin—will push the average price down below $2/MMBtu for the year, IHS Markit said. That is the lowest prices have averaged in real terms since the 1970s. In nominal terms, the last time that prices fell below $2 was 1995.
Hatch is pleased to announce that Upside Engineering Ltd. has joined Hatch Ltd., bringing together the largest oil and gas process team for complex upstream and downstream flowsheet development in Canada with a well-established local engineering firm that specializes in midstream hydrocarbon business.
The outlook for the uptake of personal and protective equipment (PPE) in the oil & gas (O&G) industry looks promising with the expansion of O&G activities through new global projects, improved stability and the presence of many occupational hazards. Vendors should focus on developing a global presence, multiproduct offerings, and close customer interactions to harness current growth opportunities. Frost & Sullivan expects the mature O&G PPE market to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.7% to reach $7.59 billion by 2023.
Encana Corporation has announced changes to its Executive Leadership Team, including the promotion of Michael McAllister to president, Brendan McCracken to executive vice president - corporate development and external relations and Greg Givens to chief operating officer. These changes are effective immediately.
Suncor is replacing its coke-fired boilers with two cogeneration units at its Oil Sands Base Plant. The cogeneration units will provide reliable steam generation required for Suncor's extraction and upgrading operations and generate 800 megawatts (MW) of power. The power will be transmitted to Alberta's grid, providing reliable, baseload, low-carbon power, equivalent to approximately 8% of Alberta's current electricity demand. This project will increase demand for clean natural gas from Western Canada.
North America is expected to drive global small-scale LNG liquefaction capacity growth from planned and announced (new-build) projects between 2019 and 2023, contributing around 47% of the total growth, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
Baker Hughes, a GE company announced that the Baker Hughes international rig count for August 2019 was 1,138, down 24 from the 1,162 counted in July 2019, and up 130 from the 1,008 counted in August 2018. The international offshore rig count for August 2019 was 244, down 11 from the 255 counted in July 2019, and up 32 from the 212 counted in August 2018.
The world wants Canadian oil and natural gas, according to an updated international research survey by Ipsos, conducted on behalf of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP).
Clariant has opened its next High Throughput Experimentation (HTE) Laboratory in Houston, Texas - the energy capital of the United States. The location is key as the new facility will be the first of its kind supporting the Oil & Gas industry, offering new and sophisticated solutions for customers. This lab is part of a global Clariant initiative to expand HTE capabilities to all Clariant Business Units, including direct support for Oil Services in North America, the Asia Pacific region, Latin America, Africa and the North Sea.
Bureau Veritas, a world leader in testing, inspection and certification services, is using cutting edge technology to reduce costs for clients - while increasing safety for engineers at the same time. This is a part of BV's ‘Twintelligence' campaign of twinning expertise with technology.
The PetroLMI Division of Energy Safety Canada has launched an enhanced website with added features to help Canadians pursue new or different career opportunities in the oil and gas industry.
Advantage Oil & Gas Ltd. reports that a significant Montney light oil pool has been discovered and appraised at Progress, Alberta, on the Corporation's 47 net section block of 100% owned lands. This discovery elevates the Progress asset to be a primary element of the Corporation's near-term liquids development program.
Canada's Federal Court of Appeal has ruled that six of twelve legal challenges filed against the Trans Mountain Expansion Project after its approval by the federal government earlier this year can move forward to trial, on an expedited basis.
Orbital Gas Systems has received orders to supply GasPTi systems for deployment across multiple natural gas plants by one of the largest U.S.-based producers and transporters of energy. These orders, part of a nascent, ongoing roll-out of GasPTi across the customer's extensive natural gas assets, will be utilized to deliver operating and environmental improvements and practically eliminate ongoing costs associated with maintenance and natural gas consumption at certain customer facilities.
Enbridge Inc. has reached a commercial agreement with shippers to place the Canadian portion of the Line 3 replacement pipeline into service by the end of this year. This agreement reflects the importance of this safety-driven maintenance project to protecting our environment and ensuring the continued safe and reliable operation of the pipeline well into the future.
Canada has the world's longest coastline and is surrounded by three oceans and the health of our oceans matters to all of us. The Government of Canada is dedicated to protecting oceans and waterways and to keeping them clean, secure and productive for the benefit of all Canadians, now and into the future. It is of vital importance that protection is given to the marine ecosystems that are home to an abundance of ocean life, support more than 350,000 jobs and sustain hundreds of coastal and Indigenous communities. The government also recognizes that scientific research is fundamental to evidence-based decision-making when planning and carrying out marine conservation efforts.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and British Columbia Premier John Horgan have announced a Memorandum of Understanding affirming their joint commitment to the powering of B.C.'s natural gas production and liquefied natural gas sectors with clean electricity.
The Government of Canada intends to increase costs to Canadian families and households with the introduction of the Clean Fuels Standard (CFS) - new regulations that will impact consumers at home and at the pump, according to the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP).
TC Energy Corporation has announced the Nebraska Supreme Court has affirmed the November 2017 decision by the Nebraska Public Service Commission that approved the Keystone XL Pipeline route through the state.
Schlumberger open sources data ecosystem and contributes to the open group open subsurface data universe forum
Schlumberger will open source its data ecosystem and contribute to The Open Group Open Subsurface Data Universe (OSDU) Forum to accelerate the delivery of the OSDU Data Platform. Schlumberger's data ecosystem is based on core components of the DELFI* cognitive E&P environment.
Ariel Rubinstein has been named President and General Manager of Atlas Copco Compressors Canada, effective as of October 1, 2019.
Bakken shale production growth will be constrained by flaring restrictions and infrastructure bottlenecks
There is considerable potential to raise crude oil production in the Bakken shale play from the current level of approximately 1.44 million barrels of oil per day (mmbd) to at least 2 mmbd. However, flaring regulations and infrastructure bottlenecks in North Dakota are limiting production growth, according to GlobalData.
Wild Well Control, Inc., a Superior Energy Services company and a global leader in well control and engineering services, has added a new 10,000 psi-rated capping stack to its WellCONTAINED group of subsea containment equipment.
Total oil & gas industry M&A deals in July 2019 worth $9.89bn were announced in the US, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
Pembina Pipeline Corporation has announced that it will acquire Kinder Morgan Canada as well as the U.S. portion of the Cochin pipeline system in a deal valued at approximately $4.35 billion in total.
Rival Downhole Tools (Rival), a portfolio company of EV Private Equity, has secured a five-year collaborative supply agreement for drilling motors for US Land from a major oilfield services provider. Rival will utilize its market-leading engineering and operational capabilities to support the customer's substantial and growing directional drilling business. Rival will also accelerate the growth of its operational footprint into multiple basins to optimize its proximity to drilling activity.
Finning International Inc. has reported its second quarter 2019 results, showing strong results in Canada that helped drive a solid increase across the operation. Net revenues in Canada increased by 18 percent, outstripping increases in costs, showing that operational efficiencies are improving the bottom line.
Gryphon Investors, a San Francisco-based middle-market private equity firm, has signed a definitive agreement to make a significant investment in Mechanix Wear, a leading designer and manufacturer of high-performance work gloves. Working alongside current owner and CEO Michael Hale, who will retain an ownership stake in the Company, Gryphon intends to build a leading platform in the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) sector. The transaction, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter, is subject to customary closing conditions. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Following an extensive investigation, flow line repairs, integrity testing and approval of the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB), Husky Energy will resume production from the remaining two drill centres shut in following the November 2018 oil spill offshore Newfoundland and Labrador. Husky will now begin an orderly restart and expects to reach full rates by early next week.
Indigenous communities have the innovation and drive to build a cleaner more resilient energy sector. That is why Canada is investing to increase Indigenous economic participation in energy infrastructure projects.
While both Alberta and Texas were hit hard by the oil-price drop in 2014, the Texas unemployment rate has dropped while the Alberta rate has risen, finds a new study released today by the Fraser Institute, an independent, non-partisan Canadian public policy think-tank.