Click here to Register

Dr. Gordon Laxer, Green Paper author and presenter

Dr. Gordon Laxer will present our 2017 Green Paper. Dr. Laxer recently authored the book “After the Sands – Energy and Ecological Security for Canadians”. Here is the link to his book. Gordon Laxer is the founding Director and former head of Parkland Institute at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. Gordon is a Political Economist and professor emeritus at the University of Alberta. He is also author or editor of five other books, including Open for Business: The Roots of Foreign Ownership in Canada (Oxford Univ Press), which received the John Porter Award for best book written about Canada. Gordon is on the advisory board of the SSHRC funded "Corporate Mapping Partnership" that is researching the structure and influence of the fossil fuel corporations in Western Canada. Gordon was the Principal Investigator of a $1.9 million research project: Neoliberal Globalism and its Challengers: Reclaiming the Commons in the Semi-periphery (2000-2006).


David Hughes, Earth Scientist

David Hughes is an earth scientist who has studied the energy resources of Canada for four decades, including 32 years with the Geological Survey of Canada as a scientist and research manager. He developed the National Coal Inventory to determine the availability and environmental constraints associated with Canada’s coal resources. As Team Leader for Unconventional Gas on the Canadian Gas Potential Committee, he coordinated the publication of a comprehensive assessment of Canada’s unconventional natural gas potential. Over the past decade, Hughes has researched, published and lectured widely on global energy and sustainability issues in North America and internationally. His most recent publication, “A Clear Look at BC LNG”  undertakes a reality check that reveals several major problems, both in the stewardship of finite non-renewable resources by provincial and federal governments, and in the environmental implications of large-scale development.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Andrew Nikiforuk, Journalist, Author

For more than three decades Andrew Nikiforuk has written about energy, economics and the West for a variety of Canadian publications including the Walrus, Maclean’s, Canadian Business, The Globe and Mail’s Report on Business, Chatelaine, Georgia Straight, Equinox and Harrowsmith. His latest investigative book,  Slick Water , examines the moral and legal implications of hydraulic fracturing, a brute force technology, that contaminates aquifers and causes earthquakes. In particular the book highlights the remarkable story of oil patch consultant Jessica Ernst.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Peter Watson, PEng, Chair, CEO, National Energy Board

Over the past several years, the work of Canada’s National Energy Board has placed it squarely in the midst of some of the most important public policy debates in the country. From pipeline safety and environmental protection, to contentious pipeline hearings, to the relationship Canada has with Indigenous Peoples - the NEB is in the middle of it all.

In his speech entitled, ‘the National Energy Board: Pipeline Safety, Transparency, and Engagement,’ NEB Chair and CEO Peter Watson will discuss the role of Canada’s energy regulator in the twenty-first century.

He will reflect on how the NEB is focusing more oversight not just on preventing pipeline incidents, but also on fostering the development of an industry Safety Culture. Peter Watson will also discuss how the inextricable link that Indigenous Peoples have to the land and environment is critical to how the NEB engages with them. And why this relationship requires a commitment from the NEB to engage with Indigenous Peoples early, often, and in an enduring manner.

Click here for Peter's Bio


David Layzell, PhD, FRSC Professor and Director, University of Calgary

David Layzell is a Professor at the University of Calgary and Director of the Canadian Energy Systems Analysis Research (CESAR) Initiative. In CESAR, he studies the energy systems of Canada and models the costs, benefits and tradeoffs of technologies and policies driving energy systems transformation. Between 2008 and 2012, he was Executive Director of the Institute for Sustainable Energy, Environment and Economy (ISEEE), a cross-faculty, graduate research and training institute at the University of Calgary.

Before going to Calgary, Dr. Layzell was a professor at Queen’s University (Kingston) and the Executive Director of BIOCAP Canada, a research foundation focused on biological solutions to climate change. While at Queen’s, he founded an scientific instrumentation company called Qubit Systems Inc. and was elected ‘Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada’ (FRSC) for his research contributions.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Jonathan Matthews, PEng, Director, GHG EPA, COSIA

Jonathan Matthews serves as Director of the GHG Environmental Priority Area at Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance. Jonathan’s oil sands career started in 1991 when he moved to Fort McMurray to work at Syncrude as a new Waterloo graduate (B.A.Sc Geological Engineering, M.Sc. Earth Sciences). He moved on to Syncrude Research in 1996 leading oil sands tailings, extraction, and materials & reliability R&D. During this time he Chaired the Mining Association of Canada’s working committee that produced “A Guide to the Management of Tailings Facilities” and was ‘hands-on’ in establishing the Cooperative Tailings R & D Agreement and the Oil Sands Tailings Research Facility. In 2006 Jonathan moved to Shell leading extraction and tailings innovation efforts where he was deeply involved establishment of the Oil Sands Tailings Consortium, a predecessor to COSIA’s Tailings. Jonathan served as VP of Statoil’s Heavy Oil Technology Centre from late 2011 to 2014, leading an ambitious program that identified viable innovation pathways to improve productivity and improve environmental performance.

Jonathan serves as a Board member for the Petroleum Technology Alliance of Canada (PTAC) and works collaboratively with the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP).

Since joining COSIA in 2014 Jonathan has witnessed total commitment and resolve from all COSIA Shareholders to advance an innovation agenda that is a “tide to lift all boats” in an increasingly complex and environmentally constrained business environment.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Darcy Fitzgerald, Executive Director, Alberta Pork

The Alberta Pork presentation at the 2017 AIA Banff Conference will highlight some of the challenges Alberta pork producers face and ways that we hope to tackle them.

The Alberta Pork Producers Development Corporation (Alberta Pork) formed in 1969 as a hog marketing board, controlled and directed by a producer Board of Directors. Board members are elected by other pork producers. From 1969 to 1996, APPDC’s primary purpose was to market all hogs, acting as a single desk seller. It also promoted and developed the hog/pork industry.

In 2001 the organization split into two separate companies: the Alberta Pork Producers Development Corporation (Alberta Pork) and the Western Hog Exchange (WHE). WHE became a private hog marketing organization. Producers can voluntarily use WHE to market hogs.

Alberta Pork is one of 21 marketing boards and commissions in Alberta operating under the Marketing of Agricultural Products Act. Alberta Pork is a self-sustaining, not-for-profit association operating on the Alberta pork producer’s behalf and as a voice for the industry. Alberta Pork collects a $1.00 per market hog levy. Funds are used to address issues and needs for the Alberta pork industry.

Since 1969, Alberta Pork has focused on service to the producer. It acts as a voice for producers to government and others. It builds trust with consumers through information on on-farm practice and food safety. Recently, Alberta Pork returned to more traditional support for producers with boots on the ground at the farm. This direct contact develops stronger basic services for our producers and ensures better two way communication to tackle challenges together.

Alberta Pork shifted its marketing efforts away from traditional retail and food service programs to a community support program. Working with our strong value chain partnerships enables the whole industry to truly support a community of consumers.

Agriculture and pork production are not easy businesses. But public and consumer trust starts with a foundation of sound on-farm practices and solid community engagement. Our producers know this. Alberta pork producers are committed to being the best at what they do and doing what is best for their community.

Click here for Darcy's Bio


Rich Smith, Executive Director, Alberta Beef Producers

Alberta Beef: A Story of People and Resources The iconic Alberta cattle and beef industry and the consumer branded Alberta Beef are truly examples of people and resource coming together to create a vibrant success story. Our industry has a long history, rich heritage, and strong traditions. We trace the beginnings of Alberta Beef to 1874, a time when the large bison herds that roamed the North American prairies had largely disappeared. A few visionary people began using the abundant grasslands and less abundant water resources of Alberta to raise cattle and provide beef for the Northwest Mounted Police (forerunner of the RCMP), the First Nations people, and the workers building our national railroad.

Now, over 140 years after the beginning of our industry, our cattle and beef producers continue to use the people and resources of this province to support 40% of the cows, 70% of the cattle feeding, and 70% of the beef processing in Canada. We export Alberta Beef across Canada, to the United States, and to customers around the world. Our industry still relies on resilient and farsighted people: the farmers and ranchers who produce the cattle and the workers who turn the cattle into beef. In the face of growing pressure and intense competition, we need the land and water resources of this province to sustain our industry. The people may have changed, but their values and their dependence on grass and water resources haven’t changed. Our story of people and resources is still unfolding.

Click here for Rich's Bio


Garth Patterson, Exec Director, Western Grains Research Foundation Garth Patterson, PAg, Executive Director, Western Grains Research Foundation

Garth Patterson is passionate about western Canadian agriculture. Prairie born and raised, Garth has spent the past thirty years involved in marketing, research, international development, communications and leadership. He joined the Western Grains Research Foundation in 2011, after 16 years as Executive Director of the Saskatchewan Pulse Growers. Garth has undergraduate and graduate degrees in Agriculture from the University of Saskatchewan. Garth and his wife Carol Ann reside in Saskatoon.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Ward Toma, General Manager, Alberta Canola Producers Commission Ward Toma, PAg, General Manager, Alberta Canola Producers Commission

Alberta Canola has been integrally involved in the western Canadian canola value chain since its inception in 1989. Working with members of the canola value chain to collectively align direction and implementation of funding, projects and programming to move the canola industry forward its shared goals.

Click here for Ward's Bio


Craig Shaw, FarmTech 2016 Award

Born and raised on a family farm in the early 50’s and then running a successful grain farming operation from 1980 to present has provided a unique perspective on evolution of grain farming in Western Canada. Farming through the tough times has taught us the need for innovation and problem solving skills that kept us competitive while continually looking for new and better ways to manage margins and risk. At the same time we needed to recognize that farming was always in a state of continual change and that the solutions of today might not be the solutions of tomorrow. We also learned the need to often dig below the surface of problems and opportunities to clearly define what was possible. In a world of ever increasing technological advancements the term it can’t be done or it won’t work only masked new potential. It also showed us that while farms have so much in common, there is always a uniqueness to every operation and that our solution was not necessarily that of others. The opportunity to share successes and failures with others only helped to make us stronger as a whole. As grain farming moves forward there are some new underlying trends that may have huge consequence to the future of our business. So my presentation will show some valuable lessons from the past, how we developed our problem solving skills to address issues we were facing and some insight into what may be issues down the road.

Click here for Craig's Bio


David Dodge, Chair of Board for Energy Efficiency Alberta 

Take a peak into our energy future with David Dodge, the producer of 160 Green Energy Futures documentaries and the chair of Energy Efficiency Alberta.  The pace of innovation in the energy sector is stunning and the implications are profound for our energy future here in Alberta and around the world. Solar, wind and other clean energy technologies have grown faster than anyone predicted and this is creating a much more decentralized energy system in which businesses and individuals are becoming energy producers. The pace of innovation in the building industry is also stunning, making net-zero homes and buildings practical and even economically attractive. Vancouver’s Zero Emissions Building Plan will require all new buildings to achieve net-zero emissions by 2030. Prince Edward Island went from being a have-not province in terms to electricity generation to having the highest renewable energy integration rates in North America in less than 10 years. One country is already pursuing a goal of making all of their building stock net-zero by 2050.

Energy Efficiency Alberta is the new energy efficiency agency in Alberta.  Energy efficiency is a cornerstone of energy innovation and Alberta is the last jurisdiction in North America to embrace energy efficiency. It’s a cornerstone of Alberta’s Climate Leadership Plan and David will share details of the first wave of energy efficiency programs coming to Alberta.

Click here for David's Bio


  Dr. Joe Vipond, Emergency Physician, Foothills Medical Centre and the Peter Lougheed Hospital

Dr. Joe Vipond has worked as an emergency physician for fifteen years, currently at the Foothills Medical Centre and the Peter Lougheed Hospital in Calgary. His interest in the environment began at a young age with the many hikes and natural explorations, and solidified further when he worked for three summers at Dinosaur Provincial Park. In his own community of Hillhurst Sunnyside he, along with some neighbours, re-established the highly local, highly organic Farmers’ Market. More recently, his interest has turned back to the environment, sitting on the board of CPAWS-Southern Alberta (2012-2015), and the Alberta Wilderness Association (2015-ongoing). In 2013 he joined efforts on the Alberta Coal Phase Out movement as a member of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment. The successful conclusion of the campaign in 2015 is arguably the most important climate victory in North America, seeing a 44 MT annual reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030. His efforts has now turned to a Canadian Coal Phase Out Campaign. He is also a fulltime husband and father to two amazing daughters.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Stefan Michalski, Consultant, ECB Enviro North America Inc.

Stefan Michalski holds a Masters of Science/Engineering degree from the Technical University of Berlin, Germany.

He has more than 20 years of experience in business development, business management and consulting in the area of renewable energies and bioenergy in particular. Stefan worked internationally on project and business development for many years with a focus on Japan and China.

Stefan started working as a consultant and project manager for ECB Enviro North America Inc. in 2004 and has over 12 years experience with the emerging Bioenergy markets in Canada. His main focus was the development of ECB’s biogas/cogeneration project in Lethbridge. The Lethbridge facility started construction in August of 2011 and is in commercial operation since December of 2013.

In 2015/2016 Stefan successfully lead discussion with the GoA on behalf of Alberta’s Biogas producers about a renewed Bionergy Producer Program.

Stefan currently is a Director with Lethbridge Biogas and has the overall responsibility for the operation of the Lethbridge facility.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Don O'Connor Don O'Connor, PEng, President, (S&T)2 Consultants Inc.

Mr. Don O’Connor, PEng, is President of (S&T)2 Consultants Inc. He is a mechanical engineer with a broad background in energy and environmental consulting and in industry. Mr. O’Connor’s background includes over 35 years of consulting, manufacturing, and marketing experience.

He is the developer of the GHGenius LCA model for transportation fuels. The model is widely used in Canada, the United States and other parts of the world.

Mr. O’Connor provides strategic advice on fuels and transportation issues to a number of Canadian Provincial governments, several Federal Government departments and foreign governments. Mr. O’Connor has also consults for a number of companies developing new technologies for alternative fuelled vehicles and companies developing new transportation fuel processes.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Allan Offenberger, Professor Emeritus of Electrical & Computer Engineering, University of Alberta

Fusion - the Ultimate Clean Energy Source

Fusion, the source of energy in our sun and stars, can provide the clean, sustainable base load energy required to power our future in electricity, heat and hydrogen for stationary and mobile applications. It offers the highest energy density and least waste processing as well as best energy payback ratio and life cycle assessment of all energy sources. Progress continues in the various approaches to realizing fusion power systems and practical systems are likely to emerge in the 2030 time frame. Success will transform energy policy worldwide. Canada, alone among the developed countries, does not have a national fusion program but efforts are underway to change this deficiency.

Click here for Allan's Bio


Craig Klemmer, Sr. Agricultural Economist

Craig Klemmer is a Senior Agricultural Economist at Farm Credit Canada with experience in agricultural markets and risk. He specializes in monitoring and analyzing the macroeconomic environment, modelling industry health and providing industry risk analysis. In addition to his speaking engagements on agriculture and economics, Craig is a regular contributor to the Farm Credit Canada Ag Economist blog.

Craig came to FCC in 2009 joining the Portfolio Analysis and Modelling team. In 2010, Craig earned a master’s degree in agricultural economics from the University of Saskatchewan.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Chris Dyck Chris Dyck, Interim VP, Innovation & Product Dev., Agriculture Financial Services Corporation

AFSC delivers lending, income stabilization and insurance programs and products to Alberta producers. As a result of delivering these programs AFSC has developed an extensive data base that is being used to improve programs and provide valuable information back to producers. This includes data on crop yields and quality, and farm income and expenses. In some cases this data is goes back to the mid 1970s.

This session will look at how AFSC currently uses this data along with opportunities to use it in the future, always with the view to providing value for primary producers. The session will also use our long term data base to tell some stories about identified trends and patterns.

Click here for Chris's Bio


Rory McAlpine, Senior Vice President, Government & Industry Relations, Maple Leaf Foods

Rory McAlpine is Senior Vice President, Government and Industry Relations with Maple Leaf Foods. In this role, Mr. McAlpine has overall responsibility for working with government and industry partners on matters of public policy, programs, regulatory affairs and trade.

Prior to joining the Company, Mr. McAlpine served as Deputy Minister of the B.C. Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries from 2002 to 2005. He also obtained significant experience with the Federal Government as Director General, International Trade Policy Directorate; Director Grains and Oilseeds Division; and Deputy Director Multilateral Trade with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Mr. McAlpine also held the position of Executive Director of the National Farm Products Council. He began his career as a Canadian Trade Commissioner, with postings to Kuwait, Bangkok, Brussels, Edmonton and Ottawa.

Click here for the Presentation Summary


Keith Wilson, Lawyer, Wilson Law Office

Why Treating Landowners Fairly is Important

Keith Wilson is an Alberta lawyer who specializes in representing clients on legal matters regarding environmental, property rights, and oil and gas law. As a lawyer and advocate for the people of Alberta, Keith has interacted with many resource industry sectors and has seen how these sectors have impacted people on the land.

Keith will share his experiences in representing landowners who have been harmed by the energy industry activities and how the harms were eventually remedied. He will share behind-the-scenes insights from some of Alberta’s highest profile environmental cases. He will demonstrate how some companies reacted in positive ways to enhance their social licence while other behaved as though, “Social licence? I must have left that in my other pants”.

Using examples of pipeline spills, well blowouts, toxic air emissions, and groundwater contamination, Keith will reveal the lessons that industry can learn to enhance its relationship with landowners and communities.

Click here for Keith's Bio


Brian Sterling, President, SCS Consulting

Brian Sterling is founder and President of SCS Consulting, an international management consulting company specializing in food industry issues including traceability and social license. He was the first President and Chief Executive Officer Safe Food Canada (SFC), a Canadian not-for-profit, public-private organization dedicated to strengthening the quality and consistency of food protection training and education. Prior to SFC, he was Managing Director of the Global Food Traceability Center located in Washington, DC.

Brian served as a member on the US Roundtable on Beef Sustainability and on the Agriculture Canada/Department of Fisheries & Oceans industry-government committee for traceability with the Seafood Value Chain Roundtable. Brian also was founding co-chair of Canada’s Industry-Government Advisory Committee (IGAC) for the National Agriculture and Food Traceability System (NAFTS).

Click here for the Presentation Summary