Alberta Premier Jason Kenney speaks at the official launch of the Canadian Energy Centre on Dec. 11, 2019. (PHOTO BY GAVIN YOUNG /Postmedia)

Alberta’s “Energy War Room” officially known as the Canadian Energy Centre (CEC), has shut down.

The following statement was released by Energy Minister Brian Jean’s Office:

“The Canadian Energy Centre is an important advocate for Canada and Alberta’s long-term position as a safe, clean and responsible energy supplier and will continue to increase the public’s understanding of the role oil and gas plays globally in a secure energy future.”

“After careful consideration, we will be integrating the mandate of the CEC into Intergovernmental Relations (IGR).”

“Resources such as CEC assets, intellectual property, and researchers will now be supporting IGR in order to seamlessly continue this important work.”


Jason Kenney raked in cash in his run for the Progressive Conservative leadership, but he’s also reaping criticism for his campaign’s financial practices (CalcaryHerald)

Founded in 2019 by Jason Kenney’s United Conservative Party (UCP), the taxpayer-funded CEC was tasked with combating supposed “misinformation” about Alberta’s oil and gas sector. Despite its mandate, the organization — which was set up as a private, not crown, corporation, thereby allowing it to skirt freedom of information laws — spent much of its time rehabilitating its own reputation.

From day one, the CEC faced accusations of being a propaganda arm for the oil and gas industry and UCP government. A series of other controversies also dogged the organization, including its widely ridiculed campaign against the animated children’s film Bigfoot Family, which the CEC decried as villainizing energy workers through subversive narratives.

In another instance, CEC workers were caught imitating reporters while sourcing information for an article, prompting the Canadian Association of Journalists’ then-president Karyn Pugliese to release a statement denouncing the organization as a “government-hired PR firm.”

The CEC had a fraught relationship with the news media, frequently accusing journalists — and entire outlets, including the New York Times — of being ethically compromised as a result of their reporting on fossil fuels.

Current estimates peg the cost of Alberta’s war room at more than $60 million since 2019, with advertising accounting for the majority of expenditures.

The opposition NDP has signalled their intention to ask the Auditor General to investigate the matter.

Brett Porter
Brett is a cleantech and climate communicator specializing in knowledge translation, public relations, and content and messaging strategy. He has a degree in Professional Communication from Toronto Metropolitan University with a minor in Canadian Government and Politics. On the side, he advises climate-friendly politicians. You can find brett at brettporter[dot]ca.

    Chinese companies dominate Wood Mackenzie’s solar PV module manufacturer rankings

    Previous article

    New report debunks 33 misconceptions about solar, wind, and electric vehicles

    Next article

    You may also like


    Leave a reply

    More in Insight