CALGARY – Since oil prices began tanking last summer, there have been predictions of thousands of layoffs in Alberta’s energy-dependent economy. So just how many jobs have we lost so far? There are no hard and fast numbers. Alberta employers must reports layoffs of 50 or more people to the Alberta government’s ministry of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour. But countless layoffs involve a handful of employees at small and medium sized businesses and so fly under the radar.
Here’s what we do know:
Between Jan. 1 and March 12, 36 Alberta employers notified the provincial government of their plans to terminate a total of 6,630 workers (including 1,962 employees at Target stores in Alberta). That’s compared to 7,900 employees in all of 2014.
Jason Gilmore, an analyst with Statistics Canada, said by early January 2015, 13,000 jobs were lost in the Alberta’s natural resource sector since September 2014. The majority of those jobs were in oil and gas.
Also in January, the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors predicted 167 fewer drilling rigs in the field compared to 2014, resulting in the layoffs of 3,400 rig workers with the loss of another 19,500 indirect jobs.
Alberta energy industry layoffs announced so far in 2015:
ConocoPhillips Canada confirms it is laying off 200 workers. The cuts represent about seven percent of its workforce in Canada, and will primarily affect employees in Calgary. In February, the company told its 2,800 Canadian Business Unit employees it would announce staff reductions by the end of March
Talisman Energy, based in Calgary, announces it is cutting as much as 15 per cent of its workforce at its head office. Of its 1,300 workers in Calgary, between 150 to 200 will be let go. Talisman is being acquired by Spanish energy giant Repsol in a deal worth $15.1 billion Cdn.
Nexen Energy, a subsidiary of China’s CNOOC, announces 400 job cuts, 300 of them in Calgary. The layoffs account for almost 15 per cent of the company’s workers in Canada.
Husky Energy tells 1,000 tradespeople at its Sunrise oilsands project they are out of a job. The company says construction at the site is largely complete, although work was not expected to end until the summer.
Cenovus, one of Canada’s biggest energy players, says it’s slashing its workforce by roughly 15 per cent. That translates into 800 jobs, the majority of them contract positions.
Precision Drilling, Canada’s biggest drilling company, announces it is cutting its budget in half. It confirms it has 1,000 fewer people working the rigs compared to the same period in 2014.
Husky Energy confirms there will be job cuts in a $400 million budget hack but gives no firm figures. In February, it announced it’s reducing this year’s capital budget by as much as $400 million and looking for up to $600 million in operational savings in response to the ongoing low-price environment for oil and gas.
Oil services giant Halliburton announces plans to slash its workforce worldwide by eight per cent, or 6,400 jobs. It declined to provide numbers on specific regions but the cuts were expected to affect hundreds of jobs in Alberta.
Sanjel, a Calgary-based private oilfield services company, confirms it has been laying off workers. The company has more than 4,000 employees.
Evraz, a company that makes steel plates and tubes for drilling rigs, lays off roughly 150 workers at its Calgary plant, according to Global News sources.
Newalta, an oilfield services company based in Calgary, lays off 180 workers. The cuts amount to 15 per cent of its staff.
Schlumberger, the world’s biggest oilfield-services company, says it will cut 9,000 jobs. Number of workers affected in Alberta: unknown.
Suncor Energy announces it is cutting 1,000 people from its workforce of about 14,000.
Royal Dutch Shell announces hundreds of job cuts at a massive oil sands project. Shell said it is laying off less than 10 per cent of its 3,000 workers at Albian Sands.
Do you know of any layoffs in Alberta’s energy industry not on this list? Email me at email@example.com – your name will be kept confidential.