It’s hard to escape the topic of Ontario energy while working at Queen’s Park these days. Whether it’s the rise in hydro prices or the political fallout from cancelled power generation contracts, everyone is talking about energy. If you don’t have a background in the subject, it can all seem a bit overwhelming and arcane, which is why it was fantastic to get brought up to speed in our meeting with our sponsor, Enbridge Gas Distribution. David Donovan, an OLIP alumni, now Senior Government Relations Advisor, and Tanya Bruckmueller, External Communications Manager, from Enbridge were kind enough to stop by Queen’s Park and give us an insider take on energy in Ontario.
Headquartered in Calgary, Enbridge is a leading energy company in Canada, focused on transportation, distribution, and generation of energy. Enbridge operates the longest crude oil and liquid hydrocarbon transport network in the world and holds a major stake in the oil and natural gas industries of Canada. As David explained to us, the increased push to “green” energy has also made Enbridge an innovator; the company is working on a number of eco-friendly solutions to power provision.
It was fascinating to hear the industry side of the hydro situation in Ontario, as well as learn some of the factors not widely known to the public, including the logistical and capital problems that would be involved in expanding Enbridge’s network and the debates around how to upgrade Toronto’s electricity grid. As we learned, changing the power source of a community is not as simple as laying a few new pipes down.
After having a great, in-depth conversation on how Enbridge is securing its place as an energy leader in Ontario, we retired to the Wickson Social House for a few refreshments, some reminiscing from David about his time as an intern, and great stories from Tanya’s work in media (including an anecdote about working with Rob Ford). Thank you to Enbridge, David, and Tanya for your support and we hope to see you soon!