A leading expert on the problem of reclaiming Alberta’s aging oil and gas infrastructure says there are big economic opportunities in the clean-up if the polluters will pay.

Regan Boychuk was the special guest at the most recent Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs luncheon.

He says there are 300,000 wells in need of reclamation in Alberta but all stakeholders, especially landowners, have to be involved in the discussion around the true costs involved in cleaning them up.

Boychuk says “there’s so much clean-up to be done, everyone in the energy sector can have a job for decades to come but the days of big profits are gone outside of the oil sands and it’s time to start cleaning up.”

However, with the sun setting on Alberta’s conventional oil and gas industry, he warns reclamation has to happen before the money is gone or taxpayers will be stuck with the cost of clean-up.