VICTORIA, B.C. – The majority of British Columbians who took part in a public engagement session for the oil and gas royalty review are in support of a revamped royalty system, according to results published in a followup What We Heard report.
Particpants in the session want a system that puts the interests of British Columbians first and eliminates outdated, inefficient fossil-fuel subsidies, the Ministry of Energy said in a statement.
The province received feedback from 938 respondents through the EngageBC website, 4,632 emails and 98 written submissions.
Most of those that provided feedback, 73 per cent, reported living and or working in the Lower Mainland/southwest or Vancouver Island/coast regions.
The North Coast and Nechako region had the lowest representation with just 2 per cent of respondents.
A majority of participants, 77 per cent, agreed with the conclusions of the government-commissioned independent assessment that the natural gas royalty framework is outdated and needs comprehensive reform with environmental protection being the most important overarching goal.
More than half of respondents also felt transitioning to a new royalty structure should be a priority.
“The message is clear: What may have worked 30 years ago does not work today and a new approach is essential for our future,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation.
“I want to thank everyone who took the time to participate, helping to shape the way we move forward.”
The review of B.C.’s oil and gas royalty system is a mandate commitment for the Ministry. As part of the review, the Province commissioned an independent assessment of the current royalty system.
The outcome of the royalty review is expected this spring.