Kirby South

Kirby South

Canadian Natural has completed construction and startup of our Kirby South Phase 1 project located approximately 85 km northeast of Lac La Biche in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo. It is the first project that we have undertaken in the Athabasca Oil Sands area and in the McMurray reservoir and uses Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) technology for the recovery of bitumen from the in situ oil sands resources.

The project includes:

  • A central processing facility (CPF) for bitumen without an upgrader. The CPF will have a peak production rate of 40,000 barrels per day of bitumen
  • Initial 7 pads with 49 SAGD well pairs
  • Associated pipelines located near the CPF
  • Water treatment and steam generation associated with the CPF. Produced water is all recycled for additional steam generation
  • Associated infrastructure to support the operation such as camp facilities, roads and power 

Economic benefits from the Kirby South project include:

  •             An estimated $520 million in taxes and $560 million in royalties payable to the Federal and Alberta Governments, in addition to the applicable taxes and royalties payable to the local municipality. 

  • Approximately 50 new staff and 10 contract positions will be created.

Kirby In Situ Oil Sands Expansion Project



February 2012 Notice of Applications for the Kirby Expansion Project

March 13, 2012 Open House in Lac La Biche for the Kirby
Expansion Project and Grouse Project

Click on link at bottom of page for further details


On December 16, 2011, Canadian Natural submitted an Integrated Application (“the Applications”) and Environmental Impact Assessment (“EIA”) for the proposed Kirby In Situ Oil Sands Expansion Project (“Kirby Expansion Project”) to the Energy Resources Conservation Board (“ERCB”) and Alberta Environment and Water (“AEW”). The Kirby Expansion Project background is described below.

In February 2012, a joint ERCB and AEW Notice of Applications was posted in various local and regional newspapers. The notice informed interested parties that the ERCB, AEW and other government departments are undertaking a review of the Applications and EIA and that the Applications are available for viewing. The notice also informed interested parties about the rules for filing statements of concern to AEW. The AEW deadline for filing statements of concern is April 20, 2012.

Canadian Natural is committed to consulting with stakeholders and Aboriginal groups on our plans so we can address any potential issues, concerns or opportunities related to the proposed development. 

The Notice of Applications and a notice for the open house can be accessed at the links below. Please call the Project Information Line (1-780-714-6161) for more information regarding the proposed Project (call collect if you are outside this calling area).

To obtain a copy of the Applications and EIA, please contact:
      Canadian Natural Resources Limited
      2500, 855 – 2 Street SW 
      Calgary, Alberta T2P 4J8
      Attention: Anita Sartori 
      Telephone: 403-517-7188
      Fax: 403-517-7438


The Kirby Expansion Project involves the expansion of two recently approved in situ oil sands projects. On September 22, 2010, Canadian Natural received Commercial Scheme Approval No. 11475 from the ERCB for the Kirby In Situ Oil Sands Project. This approval authorized Canadian Natural to develop and produce 45,000 bbl/d (7,155 cubic metres per day (m3/d)) of bitumen. This project is currently producing.

ERCB Commercial Scheme Approval No. 11472 was received September 22, 2010 to develop and produce 10,000 bbl/d (1,590 m3/d) of bitumen. Canadian Natural subsequently acquired these oil sands assets in the Kirby area, including those associated with the ERCB approved project. As a result of this acquisition Canadian Natural’s development plans for the area have evolved, resulting in the proposed Kirby Expansion Project.

On May 17, 2011, the Kirby Expansion Project was publicly disclosed and the proposed Terms of Reference for the project Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) were issued for public review and comment. On October 11, 2011, AEW issued the final Terms of Reference for the EIA. The public disclosure documents and the proposed and final Terms of Reference are also available via the links below.

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