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.


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

The NEB regulates pipelines, energy development and trade in the Canadian public interest. Before the NEB makes a decision or recommendation, they factor in economic, environmental, and social considerations. By considering all the evidence with these things in mind, The Neb is able to make decisions and recommendations that represent the ever-changing interests and concerns of Canadians. This is key to achieving the NEB’s vision of being active and effective in Canada’s pursuit of a sustainable energy future. Before becoming Chair/CEO of the NEB in 2014, Peter Watson has led in the Government of Alberta as Deputy Minister, Executive Council, (2011-2014), Deputy Minister, Alberta Energy, (2008-2011) and Deputy Minister, Alberta Environment, ( 2005-2008). He also was President of the Clean Air Strategic Alliance, a multi-stakeholder alliance to provide strategies to assess and improve air quality for Albertans, (2005-2011) and President of the Alberta Water Council (2005-2008).


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.


Darcy Fitzgerald, Executive Director, Alberta Pork

Darcy Fitzgerald is the Executive Director of Alberta Pork which is the provincial pork producers association representing the interests of approximately 400 Alberta pork producers. He is also the Treasurer on the Board of Directors of Canada Pork International, the Chairman of Canada Pork (national domestic marketing), and the Chairman for the Porkapalooza BBQ Festival. Previously he worked for the Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency, the Alberta Livestock Industry Development Fund, and Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. Darcy has a technical diploma in Biological Sciences from NAIT and a BSc and MSc in Agriculture from the University of Alberta. In his current role, as Executive Director for Alberta Pork, he deals with many issues from foreign trade, animal care, food safety, worker safety, taxation and infrastructure, risk management, as well as marketing and community engagement.


Rich Smith, Executive Director, Alberta Beef Producers

Alberta Beef Producers (ABP) represents the more than 20,000 beef producers in Alberta. Rich Smith joined ABP as the Environmental Manager and moved into the role of Executive Director. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Agriculture and a Master’s Degree in Agricultural Engineering, along with extensive experience in the development, design and management of livestock operations. As Executive Director, Rich is responsible for guiding the ABP staff as they work on behalf of Alberta beef producers to address the policy, production, communication, promotion, legal, and financial issues that will help to strengthen the beef industry in Alberta. In the environmental area, he is also responsible for dealing with the policy, regulatory and stewardship matters that will affect beef producers continued access to the land and water resources necessary for cattle production in Alberta.


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

Ward was part of the family farm in central Alberta that grew canola and cereal grains, hogs and cattle. He attended the University of Alberta, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and a Master of Science in Agricultural Economics. Ward was employed by Alberta Pork for ten years working in policy analysis, communications, forward contracting and price risk management.

Ward joined the Alberta Canola Producers as the General Manager in 1999, whose goal is to sustain the long term profitability of Alberta canola producers through research, market development and farmer extension and education.


Craig Shaw

Craig Shaw is a 4th generation grain farmer in the Lacombe Area of Central Alberta. He runs a grain farm along with farm manager Mike Sulzle of about 3000 acres growing mostly wheat, barley and canola. The goals of the farm have been to continually find new answers in addressing issues effecting the farming operation and has implemented many concepts in precision farming. The farm does a yearly summer farm tour to share new ideas and concepts with fellow producers. He has worked closely with Ag Canada research station in Lacombe in testing new concepts on the farm. Craig has been active in many farm organizations including Pulse Growers , Winter Wheat producers and currently sits on the Alberta Crop Industry Development Board as the Cereals rep.


David Dodge, Producer, Green Energy Futures

David Dodge was recently appointed as Chair of the Board of Energy Efficiency Alberta, the new crown corporation created to deliver energy efficiency programs in Alberta. He also works as the Producer of Green Energy Futures, a multi-media project that tells the stories of Canadians involved with clean energy in their businesses, homes and communities. Mr. Dodge has produced more than 150 documentaries on the most inspiring clean energy leaders, projects and policies in Canada, spending more than 4 years researching renewable energy projects, programs, businesses and technologies. Prior to Green Energy Futures, Mr. Dodge was the Communications Director at the Pembina Institute where he developed Pembina’s online media strategy for clean energy issues and prior to that produced the award winning 300 episode EcoFile radio series on sustainability. Mr. Dodge currently serves as a co-chair of the Energy Transition Committee for the City of Edmonton.


  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.


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.

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

Allan Offenberger is Professor Emeritus of Electrical & Computer Engineering at the University of Alberta. He received his B.A.Sc. and M.A.Sc. degrees (1962, 1963) from the University of British Columbia and Ph.D. degree (1968) from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

His research program for more than 40 years was focused on the development of high power lasers and their application to inertial fusion energy research. He has published extensively and given many invited talks at international conferences, universities, government and industrial laboratories as well as to service and other non-governmental organizations in Asia, Europe and North America.

He is a Past President of the Canadian Association of Physicists and has served on many scientific advisory & research grant committees and boards, as a consultant to university, government & industrial institutions and, as a reviewer for research proposals, publications, university appointments & promotions.

Allan has been a guest professor and consultant at, among others: UK Atomic Energy Agency-Culham Laboratory; University of California-Los Alamos National Laboratory; Oxford University-Rutherford Appleton Laboratory; University of California-Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and; Osaka University-Institute of Laser Engineering (major labs for fusion energy R&D).

Allan is President of the Alberta/Canada Fusion Technology Alliance - a non-profit society formed to promote fusion development.


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.


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

Chris Dyck is Interim Vice President of Innovation and Product Development, Agriculture Financial Services Corporation (AFSC). He is responsible for agriculture and program-related policy; product development; research; business intelligence; actuarial services; portfolio management; project management; as well as systems and program readiness.

Previously, Chris Dyck served as senior manager of Research and Corporate Data Management for AFSC. He also was senior manager of business risk management for AFSC. In the managment of research and corporate data management, he oversaw the stewardship and management of AFSC's long term records of crop production information from farmer clients from the 1970's onwards. AFSC has a important data base that defines crop, weather and farm business management trends across time and Alberta's diverse cropping regions. 


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.


Keith Wilson, Lawyer, Wilson Law Office

Keith Wilson is a St. Albert-based lawyer who specializes in representing clients on legal matters regarding property rights, land use, environmental and oil and gas law. In 21 years of private practice, Keith has represented clients in a wide range of cases including appearances before the Alberta Court of Appeal, Court of Queen’s Bench, Alberta Surface Rights Board, the Alberta Energy Regulator, Alberta Utilities Commission, Environmental Appeals Board, Natural Resources Conservation Board, and municipal boards among others. In addition to working with individual and corporate clients, Keith is a frequent speaker at legal and industry conferences and often interviewed by the news media on high-profile cases. In 2011, his efforts were recognized by the Alberta Venture Magazine which named him as one of Alberta’s 50 most influential people. Keith is also an early adopter of new technology including law office automation and is the founder of SmartDrones which makes innovative aerial evidence acquisition technology available to lawyers.

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 thoughts about these resource uses, their impacts and suggest key considerations for industries, people on the land and governments.


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