Using Bank of Canada’s September 13 exchange rate, the market value of Norway’s oil fund is $1.44 trillion Canadian.
That is $264,000 for every Norwegian resident, adult or child.
Alberta’s Heritage Savings Trust Fund is worth $18 billion according to the quarterly report issued in August—$4,000 per capita.
Twelve years ago, Alberta’s wealth fund was worth $21 billion in 2019 dollars—$6,000 per capita.
British Columbia and Saskatchewan have set aside nothing from oil and gas production—$0 per capita.
Norway reports that energy accounts for 15% of gross domestic product (GDP). That compares with 30% in Alberta and 23% in Saskatchewan.
Norway has done far more than put aside a substantial part of the value of fossil fuel production. It has has taken aggressive action to deal with climate change. In 2018, Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment published the Seventh National Communication Under the Framework Convention on Climate Change.
The report shows Norway’s total emissions of greenhouse gases peaked in 2007 and had dropped 6% by 2017. In a similar time frame, GHG emissions dropped 1% in BC and increased 18% in Alberta.
Government actions on GHG emissions in British Columbia are slight, primarily involving public relations gestures and revenue generation by carbon tax. The Horgan Government’s commitment to increased natural gas production disavows NDP promises to protect the environment.
While British Columbia pays lip service to the climate crisis, hard-right governments of Alberta and Saskatchewan are in full-blown denial. They act as handmaidens to the oil and gas industry.
The Premier of Alberta views expansion of fossil fuel production more important than democratic freedoms. As the Globe and Mail editorialized:
…for Alberta to create a public inquiry to go after critics is a McCarthyesque misuse of power. Public inquiries, which are court-like and can demand documents and compel witnesses, should not be called to investigate political opponents.