Province Marks Oil and Gas Celebration Day

Laine Mitchell,
Red Deer News Now
February 13, 2017

Seventy years ago today, the Leduc No. 1 oil discovery occurred, becoming a catalyst for modern Alberta.

This morning, the provincial government signed a proclamation designating February 13 Oil and Gas Celebration Day in recognition of the find. 

The initiative to recognize the day originally began in February 2016 with a petition by the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors [CAODC], with 1,300 Albertans signing it. 

A further 60 municipalities agreed to participate in the day through the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association, and 25 have since issued proclamations. Those municipalities include BrazeauCounty, Grande Prairie and Red Deer County. 

CAODC President Mark Scholz said they submitted a request to the Minister of Energy to have February 13 declared as Oil and Gas Celebration Day, following impressive feedback from citizens who supported the idea. 

“It generated some really positive traction in Alberta, it’s certainly a very clear indication from Albertans to the Alberta government that we want to see this day recognized every year, and the importance of the industry in the lives of so many people,” he said. 

Minister of Energy Margaret McCuaig-Boyd and Scholz were at the museum dedicated to the Leduc No. 1 discovery to mark the milestone.

"“The communities and the people who are part of the oil and gas sector have made tremendous contributions to building our province. We’re proud to recognize this heritage as part of the anniversary of Leduc #1," McCuaig-Boyd remarked.

Leduc No. 1 was drilled during a time in Alberta’s history where decades had passed since the last great oil discovery, and the future of the oil sector was uncertain. The discovery on February 13, 1947 kicked off Alberta’s oil boom, and helped shape the future of the province.  During its 27 year lifetime, Leduc No. 1 produced 317,000 barrels of oil and over 323 million cubic feet of natural gas.

"It’s a friendly reminder and an acknowledgment that we should recognize every year about how blessed we are as a province and continue to develop our resources in a way that provides maximum value to the people of Alberta and Canada," added Scholz.

Story: Red Deer News Now