Snaps taken April 11, 2017 of Northern Cross Yukon Ltd.’s website:
That’s some “company.”
Mammoth suit filed against Yukon government, Northern Cross Ltd. has filed a $2.2-billion lawsuit against the Yukon government over a fracking moratorium by Emily Blake, April 10, 2017, Whitehorse Star
The oil and gas company filed the lawsuit last week against the government, the Department of Energy, Mines and Resources, and the department’s minister, Ranj Pallai, in Yukon Supreme Court.
It claims that the government’s moratorium on hydraulic fracturing or fracking has impaired their exploration rights in the Eagle Plains Basin.
Northern Cross owns 15 oil and gas exploration permits in the Eagle Plains Basin, which were awarded in 2006-2007 and 2009.
They include about 1.3 million acres of oil and natural gas mineral rights.
In 2011, these permits were reorganized into five groupings in anticipation of a major exploration program for unconventional resources that would require fracking.
According to the statement of claim, Northern Cross says that these permits incorporate a bundle of rights which include fracking. It says the government was well aware through each step of the process of its fracking intentions.
“There is no doubt that the defendants knew Northern Cross was pursuing unconventional opportunities,” reads the statement of claim. [With the company lying to the public in print?]
Northern Cross says it has spent more than $100,000,000 to develop oil and gas resources in the area and that it’s now owed damages, including for a loss of opportunity. [The company’s website is empty. What lost opportunity? ]
It also claims that from the 2006 request for posting review up until the moratorium in 2015, there was no indication that fracking would not be allowed in the area. [The company ought not to have mislead the public then, or the government]
But on April 9, 2015 the Yukon government announced a moratorium on fracking in the territory except for the Liard Basin.
This was following recommendations from the January 2015 final report from the Select Committee Regarding the Risks and Benefits of Hydraulic Fracturing.
The suit says none of the committee’s recommendations included a ban on fracking and they recommended further study on the potential impacts of fracking in the Yukon.
“The moratorium went far beyond any of the select committee’s recommendations,” reads the statement of claim.
It adds that the moratorium was imposed without further study and with disregard to the impact it would have on Northern Cross.
In April 2015, Northern Cross expressed its concerns to the government and requested that they be granted certain concessions. The company says it was reimbursed for $3.7 million for outstanding work deposits and tenure was extended on one of its permits.
Northern Cross is now claiming damages arising from misrepresentation, de facto cancellation, de facto expropriation, and unjust enrichment. [What will Northern Cross pay to the Yukoners for misleading them and lying publicly?]
It says the government’s moratorium on fracking essentially cancelled its exploration rights.
“The moratorium takes away Northern Cross’ right to pursue the development of the oil and gas resources that have been proven to exist on the subject lands,” reads the statement of claim.
It’s claiming $395 million for refund on work deposits, application fees, rental amounts, sunk costs and interest.
It’s also seeking $1.83 billion in damages for loss of opportunity of 8.6 billion barrels of oil [Double what the Geological Survey of Canada estimates is there – Refer below], at fair market value, identified as being contained in the area through a resource evaluation. [Most of which would not be recoverable, even with hydraulic fracturing, never mind the massive costs to adequately baseline test and monitor the groundwater, haul away the drilling and frac waste (to Alberta), and haul the oil long distances to be able to sell it]
The claim also considers other remedies if the court does not find the moratorium is a de facto cancellation of the company’s disposition.
It says the moratorium should then be considered an unlawful interference with economic interests for which it’s owed an alternative $395 million.
Or, the moratorium constitutes a nuisance for unreasonably interfering with Northern Cross’ ability to exercise its propriety interests. And for that they are owed $207.3 million.
The claim also states the government has been unjustly enriched for inducing Northern Cross into undertaking exploration activities and benefitting from those activities.
“They have gained a much clearer picture of the locations and scale of the unconventional resources found in the Eagle Plains basin for their or others’ future use, at no cost to themselves,” says the lawsuit.
It’s also alternatively seeking an order so the moratorium does not apply to them.
Finally, it’s claiming costs, judgment interests and other relief as the court deems just.
Northern Cross’ activity in the area includes the drilling of four wells in 2012 and 2013.
It says it was granted licences to drill between 2,800 and 3,800 metres, and that the government was aware that drilling to this depth was for the purpose of identifying unconventional resources. [AER lied in their legal briefs in the Ernst lawsuit, including in the factum filed with the Supreme Court of Canada. Is Nothern Cross Lying in it’s statement of Claim? If so, how many lies?]
Following the drilling program, Northern Cross says it acquired 315 kilometres of 3D seismic data and 25 km of 2D seismic data, and undertook exploration activities at a cost of $115 million.
The statement of claim says this is the first time 3D seismic data were done in the Yukon and that it significantly reduces risk, increases efficiency and improves success rates of wells.
It sent this data to Schlumberger Oilfied Services, whose resource evaluation revealed a large area of shale holding approximately 8.6 billion barrels of oil. [That’s not recoverable oil and the Yukon’s moratorium does not prevent Northern Cross from drilling for what the company publicly claimed to be drilling for – conventional oil]
The oil and gas company says it also paid $2,183,570 in rent from the time permits were granted.
The government has yet to respond to the suit and the claims have not been proven in court.
Neither representatives from Northern Cross nor the government could be reached for comment before press time this afternoon. [Emphasis added]
Northern Cross files court action against YESAB, ‘What I am asking for is consistency,’ says Northern Cross president Richard Wyman [Hypocrite!] by Meagan Deuling, March 14, 2017, CBC News
Northern Cross Limited has filed an application in federal court against the Yukon Environmental and Socio-Economic Assessment Board, saying YESAB’s procedure is inconsistent. [It appears that Northern Cross Ltd is the inconsistent one, and dishonest!]
The application is in relation to the company’s controversial application for an oil and gas exploration project in Eagle Plains, which the energy company says took about 20 months to process through YESAB.
Northern Cross president Richard Wyman said similar applications took between two and seven months.
Now, the application has been referred to YESAB’s executive committee for further review.
“This whole process was unique compared to any other experience we’ve had with YESAB,” said Wyman.
The application is for exploratory drilling. Wyman says the company has had three similar applications successfully assessed recently. He said applications to build roads and do seismic testing were also recently assessed without any delays.
Wyman said the intent of court action isn’t to alter or eliminate the need for assessment.
“What I am asking for is consistency from one process to the next for similar activities, so that there is a predictability of process, time frame, information required, treatment of the information, so on.”
According to an evaluation report of Northern Cross’s application on the YESAB website, the board was “unable to determine the probability or magnitude of changes to caribou migration and seasonal distribution in relation to project activities and the associated duration, reversibility, and extent of such effects.”
Still, Wyman said he is “surprised and disappointed” that YESAB referred the application to its executive committee for further review. He said Northern Cross invested time, effort and money into this process. [$2.2 Billion worth?]
“I would just say that when you look at other jurisdictions on the planet for similar activities, it’s not quite the same setup.” [Then, go drill instead in Alberta and Saskatchewan where anything goes.]
YESAB wouldn’t comment on the court action. [Emphasis added]
[Refer also to
… The oil and gas industry, says Ernst, maintains fracking is safe, and challenges anyone to bring forward evidence to prove otherwise. Ernst says there’s not much negative proof on the record because the industry settles its disputes outside the courtroom, and attaches gag orders as part of the settlement conditions. … “I really do not believe scientifically it can be done safely, because you are shattering the underground formation and nobody can go down there and study it, and nobody can go down there and fix it,” she says.
… The Yukon, she says, is in the position to stand back before it makes the same errors Alberta and others have made by allowing hydraulic fracturing to occur.
… Northern Cross Ltd. has filed a project proposal with the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Board to drill two more exploration holes near Eagle Plains this winter. The company has indicated it does not intend to use hydraulic fracturing, but can’t say for sure until it begins drilling and learns more about the underground formations. It has also indicated to the assessment board that it has been assured by the Yukon government that should Northern Cross decide sometime down the road to use fracking, a separate environmental assessment would not be required.
Three First Nations have indicated in their submissions to the assessment board that if there’s even a remote chance Northern Cross will use hydraulic fracturing, the company should have to demonstrate it can be done with no negative impacts to the environment. Northern Cross received permits in 2007 and 2008 for its first four exploration wells, though work did not start until this summer. It began drilling its first hole in August. A Chinese company purchased the controlling interest in Northern Cross last year for $20 million.
… Ernst says her lawyers have told her to be prepared for a long haul, as there will surely be attempts to drag out the matter for as long as possible. … “I am putting all my time into the case,” she says. “I am working 18 hours a day, seven days a week, and I have been for the last six years. “I am using up all my savings on the case, and I actually recognize I have given up the rest of my life for this.” [Emphasis added]
An Alberta-based gas company has withdrawn its proposal for fracking at its Eagle Plains, Yukon, exploration site. Northern Cross did so after the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Board requested more information on the subject. The assessment board received hundreds of comments from Yukoners concerned about hydraulic fracture stimulation. Dawson office manager Shelby Jordan said they, in turn, asked Northern Cross for more information. Don Roberts said he thinks the company might try to do fracking in the future, even though they have withdrawn their request. “The proponent has indicated they are no longer going to be proposing that or considering it for their activities. So it’s not included in their assessment.” Jordan said. Don Roberts chairs Yukoners Concerned About Oil and Gas Exploration in the Yukon. He said the written withdrawal leaves something to be desired.
“I think deep down, it’s not over yet because if you read the comments and sort of see what the withdrawal was all about they basically are saying that ‘if we still find that we need to do something more than just drill and we have to frack to find out what’s going on, all we have to do now is go to the minister’,” said Roberts.
The withdrawal reads, “NCY first needs to gather information by drilling the two proposed wells and evaluating samples and test results before determining whether hydraulic fracture stimulation can be considered as an appropriate procedure to support future resource development. To the extent that hydraulic fracturing stimulation is a viable procedure, its application would be undertaken in compliance with the statutory and regulatory regime of Yukon”. Roberts said there needs to be a public debate on whether there should be fracking allowed anywhere in the territory. He said other jurisdictions have banned it because of its adverse effects on groundwater. [Emphasis added]
2014 06 18: Fracking not part of Northern Cross’ drilling horizon, Approximately 75 people turned out Monday evening to hear Northern Cross Yukon explain its oil and gas exploration plans on Eagle Plain for the next decade or more
Approximately 75 people turned out Monday evening to hear Northern Cross Yukon explain its oil and gas exploration plans on Eagle Plain for the next decade or more.
Company president Richard Wyman told the audience there’s a significant opportunity brewing in northern Yukon for the territory’s economy and workforce, particularly if a commercial product is established.
He laid out a proposal for up to 20 more exploration wells over the next few years, based on the results so far from the company’s 3D seismic program last winter.
Targets for the 20 wells have already been identified but how the project unfolds will depend on the results of further drilling and extended flow tests that will be used to help determine the productivity of each site, said Wyman.
The company president did emphasize Northern Cross has no plans to use hydraulic fracturing to get at the gas or oil, and is not expecting it will have to use fracking. [Standard lie used by companies trying to con away communities raising concerns and asking questions about hydraulic fracturing?]
All the targets, he insisted, involve conventional drilling.
“We are looking for both crude oil and natural gas in this campaign,” said the company president.
Wyman said the company intends to submit its project plan to the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Board in the next week or two.
A tentative schedule posted by the company shows it hopes to be ready to renew drilling activity by January. The first extended flow test could begin by late next year, according to the schedule.
He explained the additional holes and the extended flow tests the company intends to conduct will eventually provide Northern Cross with the information it requires to determine if its supply of oil and gas on Eagle Plain is commercially viable.
“We just need to take a bit more time to understand it.”
Wyman said flow tests for each hole will need to go for about two years to provide the company with enough information to know what it’s dealing with.
Each hole, he noted, will require year-round access.
Oil recovered during testing will have to be trucked south, though the company has not yet decided whether it will truck it all the way or ship it by sea through Skagway or other ports, he said.
Wyman said in addition to the 3D seismic program, the company is still analyzing data from four wells drilled between July 2012 and 2013.
Eagle Plain, Wyman reminded the audience, has the largest onshore potential for the development of oil and gas in the Yukon.
The Geological Survey of Canada estimates there are 4.5 million barrels of oil and six trillion cubic metres of gas, he pointed out
Wyman said the opportunities for the local economy are substantial.
Northern Cross would like nothing more than to shrink its main supply line from 3,500 kilometres into Alberta to a fraction of that, with links to Dawson City or Whitehorse, he said.
Wyman told the audience Northern Cross is committed to safety, respect, honesty, team work, inclusion [REALLY!?] and the environment.
“It is very important to Northern Cross that we are very transparent and open to what we are doing.” [REALLY!?]
He said while the company has received a substantial investment from the China Offshore Oil Corp., there is a still significant amount of Canadian interest in Northern Cross.
The company estimates it has already spent $120 million on its exploration program so far. [FAR FROM $2.2 BILLION]
Northern Cross is holding meetings this week with First Nation representatives and the general public in four Yukon communities to explain its plans for the future.
Following the meetings in Whitehorse, the company moved to Mayo Tuesday, is in Old Crow today and will conclude the tour tomorrow in Dawson City.
Monday evening’s audience included representatives of local survey, engineering and environmental consulting firms, the service and supply sector, environmental organizations, and several members of the territory’s anti-fracking movement.
Surrounded by a handful of anti-fracking lobbyists following his presentation, Wyman told them the project proposal the company intends to submit for screening does not include a fracking option.
Should the company decide down the road to use hydraulic fracturing, it would have to go back before the assessment board and the regulatory agencies, he explained.
Wyman told the lobbyists the subsurface structure in the area of Eagle Plain occupied by Northern Cross is not of the shale type requiring fracking to release the hydrocarbons, as it is in southeast Yukon and across the way in the N.W.T. [Emphasis added]
June Jackson on Jun 18, 2014 at 12:55 pm
Me thinks he (Richard Wyman) protests too much..
This site is a real good info site regarding what is going on in Canada..it is factual, not judgmental.
In June of 2013 NC DID submit an application “NCY was considering the possibility of using hydraulic fracturing as a method of resource extraction.” The crap hit the fan about this time with YESAB posting publicly, (as it is required to do by law) the details of Project # 2012-0140. So much on the fan that NC “formally requesting that hydraulic fracture stimulation be removed from consideration as part of the project”. Read about it here.
These people do not have the best interests of anyone or anything at heart..they are about money. That’s what big business does. They aren’t a social welfare program.
“Wyman told the audience Northern Cross is committed to safety, respect, honesty, team work, inclusion and the environment.” Maybe..as long as it doesn’t cost them any money.
2014 05 16: Northern Cross (Yukon) Limited is on the Verge of Natural Resource Discoveries in the Yukon in Canada Business Review [Just a fairy tale press release to set up Chinese partners to take billions from ordinary Canadians under ex PM Steve Harper’s China Trade Deal (aka Steal)? The company didn’t know yet in 2014 whether it would need hydraulic fracturing to access the oil]
Richard Wyman discusses the recent company activities and anticipated future natural resource exploration and development in the Yukon now that the company has completed the first ever 3-D Seismic Program in the region
Founded in 1994 by Richard Wyman and David Thompson, Northern Cross (Yukon) Limited (NCY) set out to explore for and potentially develop oil and natural gas in the Yukon. Operating as the only company of its kind in the Northern Yukon territory, the company commenced almost three years ago the most ambitious exploration program in fifty years in northern Yukon. This past winter, for the first time ever in the Yukon, a 3-D seismic program was conducted to further advance the geological understanding of the region.
Richard Wyman graduated from Queens University in Ontario with a degree in chemical engineering and has focused his degree in the oil and gas industry. He has had the opportunity to gain knowledge in exploration, evaluation, reservoir management of producing properties, development planning of Northern resources and even analyzed equities for Canadian junior and senior oil and gas companies. With his degree and multitude of experiences in this field, it is no surprise that he expanded his interest and co-founded NCY with David Thompson, a classmate at Queens, who has a similar background and interest.
The company is the owner and operator of three Significant Discovery Licenses, representing the only discovered petroleum and natural gas resources in northern Yukon. NCY also holds an additional 1.3 million acres of exploration land, located in Northern Yukon on the Arctic circle, called the Eagle Plain. Wyman explains that “in the last 20 years, since NCY was incorporated, the company has been undertaking a variety of exploration activities to establish a resource base that will hopefully someday result in commercial developments.” According to Wyman, they “haven’t quite got the resource mass yet to move toward a development but they’re getting there.”
Forging strong partnerships
So what actions are being taken to achieve these development goals? Assisting in the long term vision of resource development is the Chinese National Offshore Oil Company (CNOOC). Three years ago, the CNOOC became a major shareholder with Northern Cross Yukon, thus allowing them to obtain the capital to move forward with the programs that can help the company identify new resources and increase the resource base.
Wyman explains that since CNOOC has become involved, “a preliminary phase of exploration drilling has been conducted, including four new wells, some reaching almost 3,400 meters measured depth”. In addition to the new wells which provide modern data about the geology and the hydrocarbon system, Northern Cross Yukon has just conducted the first ever 3-D seismic program in the Eagle Plain to identify potential new resource areas for exploration and development. This project is believed to be one of the largest 3-D programs in Canada this year and is covering an area of about 350 sq. kilometers. It is certainly the largest 3D seismic survey in northern Canada this year.
Depending on what the seismic data reveals about the resource opportunities at Eagle Plain , Northern Cross Yukon might establish sufficient resource mass during the next round of drilling to proceed to a phased development Because the Eagle Plain has a confirmed hydrocarbon system, there is a reasonable possibility of making one or more commercial discovery(ies) in Eagle Plain. Also, NCY has a strong strategic position at Eagle Plain that suggests significant running room to repeat on any drilling success.
Modern technology plays a critical role
While having the financial capacity to undertake and a large exploration project in a remote, frontier setting is essential, it is equally helpful to be able to take advantage of modern technologies that were not available to the original explorers at Eagle Plain in the 1960’s. The ability to drill directional and horizontal wells and undertake a 3D seismic program are expected to improve drilling outcomes and production performance. Other techniques that have become mainstream practices elsewhere in North America, such as hydraulic fracture stimulation, may eventually have application in Eagle Plain though it is still early days to confirm this. NCY is able to evaluate a broader range of geological settings using modern diagnostic tools that enhance the resource potential of the region. The exploration program is investigating a variety of structural and stratigraphic play concepts that have shown merit in other sedimentary basins around the world. The combination of all these factors gives NCY the encouragement to continue its ambitious program and hopefully satisfy the primary objective of establishing commercial production in the Eagle Plain area.
One of the challenges Northern Cross Yukon has faced is trying to maximize the value of old data from seismic and drilling activities conducted during the first major wave of exploration work at Eagle Plain between 1959 and 1972. The other major challenge is working with a dataset that is at best pretty coarse. Old 2D seismic lines are often 10 or more kilometres apart so there are large data holes in the basin. Similarly, the legacy drilling totaled about 34 wells and most of them are between 10 and 50 kilometres apart so modeling the geology of the basin has had its challenges. With new data from recently drilled wells and the 3D seismic survey, we are progressively reducing the uncertainty of exploration and hopefully improving our chances of success. Wyman’s anticipates that over the next three to five years, “the emphasis is going to be aimed at conventional resources, hopefully oil. With the large land position, there is running room to build on any initial success. Though the anticipation and excitement of receiving and interpreting the seismic data is high, safety is still a crucial factor to Northern Cross Yukon for its employees. “Safety is a paramount concern for us and there are a lot of reasons for it but remoteness is probably the most important influence”. The Eagle Plain is located in a remote territory of the Yukon, making it a long drive to the nearest hospital. Only employees and contractors who demonstrate the upmost professionalism and safety record are considered for the job.
In the search for new employees, Northern Cross Yukon has not lost awareness of the surrounding territory and the local aboriginal communities and residences in the territories. The company prides itself on maintaining positive relationships with the local First Nations and makes an effort to include them in the operations. [By suing the pants off them? ] The relationships with local First Nations have been building for many years and Northern Cross Yukon is happy to help provide both business and employment opportunities to help meet economic development objectives of the region. [Emphasis added]