Leading the energy evolution

Learn about the CAODC’s historic name change.

By Caroline Fyvie

May 27 marked an important day for the CAODC. Following 72 years as the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors, the association unveiled a new name, the Canadian Association of Energy Contractors (CAOEC), along with an updated mandate and logo.

After extensive member and industry consultation, and to reflect the evolving energy landscape, it was determined that not only was a name change important for the Association’s future, but also that the time for a change was now. Opposition toward oil and gas within the public sphere has never had more influence on policy makers and the public in general. Paradoxically, the global demand for energy is increasing, rapidly led by emerging economies. As a result, the global market needs low carbon, renewable, clean alternatives, and responsible and ethical processes throughout the production life cycle as it struggles to keep up with demand and lower emissions profiles at the same time. To help produce the innovation, technology, systems, and processes to meet the needs of the marketplace in this manner, the Canadian energy industry, and its service sector, must continue to lead the way. As such, the CAOEC’s updated mandate includes playing a leading role in the oil and gas, hydrogen, helium, geothermal, and carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) sectors.

“Canada’s oil and gas will be a fundamental component of the world’s energy supply in the coming decades, but it is up to us to lead, develop, and pioneer new technologies and carbon capture applications to meet the energy transition challenge, higher environmental, social, and governance performance expectations from both the market and government,” Explains CAOEC President and CEO Mark A. Scholz.

To commemorate the occasion, CAOEC hosted a press conference with federal and provincial energy ministers including Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Federal Minister of Natural Resources, Honourable Bronwyn Eyre, Saskatchewan Minister of Natural Resources, Honourable Sonya Savage, Alberta Minister of Energy, and Honourable Bruce Ralston, British Columbia Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources.

CAOEC’s History

The newly formed CAOEC has a rich history. Originally formed by 10 drilling contractors in 1949, CAODC had represented Canada’s innovative and resilient drilling and service rig industry and the hard-working women and men who have contributed to it for decades.

“Since 1949, your association has advocated for your members who in turn have been leaders and innovators in the oil and gas sector,” Minister Savage acknowledged, reflecting on the many changes the energy sector has experienced. “We know the changes are very significant and the work that the industry association is doing is a reflection of these shifts and the many opportunities that come with it in Alberta.”

Minister Eyre agreed the association has played a significant role for Saskatchewan’s service sector which supports thousands of valuable jobs across the province, while maintaining an exceptional safety record. “You’ve been committed to promoting safe, dependable operations across the oil and gas drilling sector,” noted the minister in her remarks.

In keeping with tradition, CAOEC will continue to set high standards of health and safety for the service sector across Canada in addition to providing high-value employment opportunities. “The energy sector has been and remains a foundational part of the economy of British Columbia. The contributions of CAOEC members to the success of the energy industry are manifold and support the health of B.C. communities, particularly those in the Northeast of the province where oil and gas has long been a vital industry,” Minister Ralston said.

Leveraging our Strengths

At the press conference, Minister Eyre expressed her opinion that an energy transition means building on the strengths of our oil and gas sector to expand into new areas such as hydrogen, geothermal, and helium development.

According to Minister O’Regan, the name change is fundamental for Canada’s energy future and ambitions to reach Net-Zero. “The new Canadian Association of Energy Contractors represents a rethinking of your future. A rethinking of our future, a low emissions energy future that reaches net zero by 2050, a prosperous future that continues to create jobs and a future that leaves no one behind,” he commented.

“The industry is the biggest part of our economy. It is our biggest export. And what that means is that we have hundreds of thousands of workers, engineers, tradespeople, scientists, inventors, investors who know how to build energy infrastructure, who know how to do the complex engineering that we need.”

CAOEC’s Updated Logo

As the CAOEC leads one of the greatest energy transformations in over 150 years, its updated logo features bold colors and a redesigned shield, and symbolizes not only the Association’s history but the exciting opportunities ahead. In describing the new logo’s significance, and all of the thought put into its design, CEO Scholz says the new blue colour, in particular, represents this opportunity, and the limitless potential of the industry.

“The shield represents our strength and courage, unity, and determination. The shield’s colors represent the energy systems of oil, natural gas, LNG, geothermal, and hydrogen. The shield around the “E” represents the energy transition and who we are. That being energy contractors and not just oil well contractors. the Canadian flag with a lightning bolt represents the power and potential of Canadian energy. And finally, the Est. 1949 at the top of the shield represents the importance of our history and is part of our strength.” Scholz remarks.

To learn more about CAOEC’s new logo, click here.

An Optimistic Future

The Canadian energy industry has a bright future ahead. A global energy transition will take time and planning, but there’s no doubt Canadian energy workers and the businesses that support them will succeed beyond expectations.

“This transformation does not mean the end of oil and gas. It means cleaner oil and gas. And it certainly means the addition of other energy sources, but oil and gas as valuable commodities have a long life ahead.” Scholz states.

CAOEC looks forward to ensuring a strong, resilient, respected, and influential energy services sector through a supportive and collaborative regulatory environment that embraces development, national energy security, and the export of premium products.

Read CAOEC’s position paper – Canada’s Energy Services: Leading the Energy Evolution.

Watch the promotional video CAOEC: A New Direction here.