Ambassador Doer Talks Energy With Southern U.S. Leaders

Consul General Louise Blais and Alabama Governor Robert Bentley at Southern States Energy Board
Ambassador Gary Doer and Consul General Louise Blais attended many of the SSEB sessions.

On September 29, 2014, Ambassador Gary Doer addressed the annual meeting of the Southern States Energy Board (SSEB). He communicated key messages on the Canada-U.S. relationship, particularly on Canada as an energy partner to an audience of about 150 state legislators, officials and industry representatives.

Recently arrived Consul General Louise Blais also attended the SSEB and connected with a large number of partners from the six states covered by the Consulate General of Canada in Atlanta: Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. She discussed Canada’s trade, energy and security relations with Alabama with Governor Robert Bentley and U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions.

The Ambassador argued that North America needs an energy security strategy based on four components: (a) energy efficiency; (b) renewable energy, including electricity generated by hydro power; (c) developing our oil and gas resources; and (d) innovation and improvement of infrastructure. Canada is a friendly and reliable supplier of energy. Canada’s position on the Keystone XL pipeline is essentially the same as that of the U.S. Department of State. There are well established supply chain relationships between U.S. companies and oil sands development with the result that 90 cents of every dollar Americans pay for Canadian oil comes back to the U.S.

During the meeting, two U.S. governors, Governor Robert Bentley of Alabama and Governor Earl Ray Tomblin of West Virginia, many state legislators and officials and others clearly expressed appreciation for the Canada-US energy, trade and security relationships. Many speakers acknowledged Canada as the largest foreign supplier to the U.S. of oil, natural gas, uranium and electricity.