Cenovus Energy

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Cenovus Energy Inc.
Type Public
Traded as TSXCVE
S&P/TSX 60 component
Industry Oil and Natural Gas
Founded 2009
Headquarters Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Key people Brian Ferguson, President & Chief Executive Officer
Michael A. Grandin (Board Chair)
Products Oil, Natural Gas
Revenue $18.7 billion CAD net before royalties (2013)[1]
Employees 5000+ (2013)
Website Cenovus.com

Cenovus Energy Inc. (pronounced se-nō-vus) is an integrated oil company headquartered in Calgary, Alberta.

Cenovus was formed on December 1, 2009 when Encana Corporation split into two distinct companies: one an integrated oil company (Cenovus), the other a pure play natural gas company (Encana).[2] The split left Cenovus with the assets formerly belonging to PanCanadian Energy Corp. and Alberta Energy Company (AEC), the two Canadian oil and gas companies that merged to form Encana in 2002.


Cenovus currently has two producing projects in the Alberta oil sands – Foster Creek and Christina Lake – as well as several emerging projects which are in various stages of development. Foster Creek and Christina Lake are 50 percent owned by ConocoPhillips. Cenovus also produces heavy oil from the mobile Wabasca formation at its 100 percent-owned Pelican Lake operation in the Greater Pelican Region, about 300 kilometres north of Edmonton. The company also operates the Weyburn oilfield in Saskatchewan. It is one of the most prolific oilfields in Western Canada and has been in operation since 1954. The Weyburn project is also Canada’s largest CO2 enhanced oil recovery operation as well as the site of the largest geological greenhouse gas storage project in the world – the International Energy Agency Greenhouse Gas Weyburn-Midale CO2 Monitoring and Storage Project. This independent research initiative is managed by the Petroleum Technology Research Centre in Regina, which studies carbon capture and storage in an oil reservoir.[3]

Cenovus along with Canadian Natural Resources Limited, Suncor and Talisman Energy Inc launched Western Canadian Select (WCS) in December 2004 as a new heavy oil stream, produced and traded out of Western Canada.[4] Western Canadian Select (WCS) Edmonton Par are benchmarks crude oils for the Canadian market.[5]

Cenovus also has ownership in two refineries in the United States as part of a business venture with Phillips 66. Cenovus has a 50 percent interest in the Wood River (Illinois) and Borger (Texas) refineries which Phillips 66 operates.[6]


Cenovus applies many existing and new technologies at its operations to recover oil and natural gas. The primary technology Cenovus used at its Foster Creek and Christina Lake projects is called steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD).[7] An additional technological improvement called solvent aided process (SAP) to enhance the SAGD process is being tested at Christina Lake. Cenovus is planning to use SAP at its Narrows Lake SAGD project that is currently under construction.

In 2010, Cenovus commercialized its Wedge WellTM technology,[8] which is used to produce more oil at its oil sands operations while using little to no additional steam. The company followed in 2011 with the commercialization of its blowdown boiler[9] technology to improve the efficiency of water use at its oil sands operations. Cenovus has recently developed its SkyStratTM drilling rig that allows an exploratory rig to be flown into remote areas by helicopter piece-by-piece, set up to drill a test well, dismantled and airlifted away.[10] The process requires no roads, meaning little disturbance to the boreal forest.


Cenovus Energy provides housing for staff and other contract workers, commonly known as "camps", who work at their Christina Lake and Foster Creek projects as well as other locations in its operating area in northern Alberta. A few of the bigger camps house up to 800 people. The camps employ housekeeping, kitchen, janitorial and technical support staff, as well as electricians and paramedics who work and live for a short time on-site as part of a shift rotation. Most camps include amenities such as state-of-the-art gyms and recreational areas.


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