ARCHIVED - Government of Canada Welcomes Investment in Canada’s Energy Future

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Natural Resources Canada
January 20, 2012

OTTAWA — The Honourable Joe Oliver, Minister of Natural Resources, and the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Regional Minister for Nova Scotia, today welcomed news of a major new commitment to Canada’s offshore energy resources. The Canada–Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board (CNSOPB) today announced Shell Canada Limited as the winning bidder for four parcels of land off the Nova Scotia coast, resulting from a bid to spend $970 million on offshore exploration activities.

“The energy sector will continue to be a major source of prosperity, bringing jobs and economic development to communities across Canada,” said Minister Oliver. “We welcome this significant investment in our energy industry, the single largest bid in the area.”

“This bid is an example of the reinvigorated interest in Nova Scotia's offshore oil potential, which could be as much as eight billion barrels of oil," said Minister MacKay.  "Exploration off Nova Scotia's coasts ensures that our energy sector remains dynamic and jobs are created in our communities.  This is an exciting time for all Nova Scotians."

The parcels of land are located 200 km off Nova Scotia’s southwestern shore. The CNSOPB will proceed with issuing exploration licences effective March 1, 2012, to Shell Canada Limited, pending final ministerial approval by both the federal and provincial governments.

The CNSOPB will continue to ensure the responsible and sustainable development of these offshore resources, while protecting the safety of workers and the environment. Further information is available on the CNSOPB website at:

Media may contact: 

Patricia Best
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister
Natural Resources Canada


Media Relations
Natural Resources Canada