Suncor Energy Inc. reported that, effective July 22, the Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB) has removed production constraints imposed on Suncor's Firebag in-situ oil sands operations.
Bitumen production from Firebag had been capped at approximately 42,000 barrels per day in September 2007 due to sulphur emissions that exceeded regulated limits.
The ERCB has advised that issues at the site have been addressed sufficiently to lift the cap, but Suncor must meet a variety of conditions, including ensuring emissions remain at compliant levels and providing regular status reports.
"The removal of the cap reflects a lot of hard work to reduce emissions and put in place the planning and investments required to manage this concern going forward," said COO Steve Williams. "We're pleased that the ERCB has recognized these accomplishments and we're looking forward to safely ramping up Firebag production."
With the cap lifted, Suncor expects to begin steaming in preparation for ramping up production from well pads that are currently shut in due to the regulatory limit.
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