Chris directs the Pembina Institute's work in Alberta. His focus since joining the Institute in 1996 has been on reducing the health and environmental impacts of oil and gas, the oilsands and power generation in Alberta. He is currently a member of the board of Alberta's Clean Air Strategic Alliance and represents the Institute in a variety of multi-stakeholder forums.
Prior to assuming his current position, Chris oversaw the Institute's Policy Group, which was responsible for research and advocacy to advance sustainable energy solutions in Canada in the areas of climate change, renewable energy, energy efficiency, oilsands and transportation.
Chris holds a B.Sc. in environmental and conservation science from the University of Alberta and a Master of Arts in environment and management from Royal Roads University.
Chris Severson-Baker is available for speaking engagements.
Chris Severson-Baker's Recent Publications
Prime Minister Stephen Harper cited Alberta's version of carbon pricing as a model that could be applied at a national scale. Our analysis has found that an Alberta-style model could work at the national level — but it wouldn’t be ideal.
The wrap-up of UN climate talks in Lima, Peru, comes at a significant time for Alberta. Canada is not on track to hit its 2020 climate target, and the growth in Alberta’s carbon pollution is a significant barrier. But Alberta’s new climate strategy is expected by the end of the year, and the province has several big opportunities to turn things around.
Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. (CNRL) has come as close as it likely ever will to admitting that the design of the Primrose Cyclic Steam Stimulation project has failed, and that this failure led to the four bitumen and steam emulsion blowouts that were discovered several kilometres apart just over one year ago.
In a drastic move to contain an on-going and unstoppable bitumen blowout in Cold Lake, Alberta, the province’s department of environment has ordered Canadian Natural Resource Ltd. to drain two thirds of a 53-hectare lake. According to CNRL, some of the removed water will be stored in the remaining one third of the lake, with the rest piped to a nearby pit and wetland.
Executives at Canadian Natural Resources Limited (CNRL) said little about an ongoing blowout at an underground oilsands extraction site until late last week, when the company held a conference call for investors and analysts, claiming it had identified the cause of the problem and the situation was under control. Yet, in that conference call, CNRL also confirmed that bitumen emulsion — a mixture of oilsands and water — is still escaping from the Clearwater formation 500 metres underground and following an unknown pathway to the surface where it is leaking out of the ground in four distinct locations at a rate of up to 20 barrels a day.