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A Pipeline of Energy Conferences Fuels Calgary Meetings


From the Global Petroleum Show for 50,000, to the International Pipeline Exposition for 6,500, to the Society of Petroleum Engineers Technical Conference & Expo with some 6,000 attendees, and upcoming meetings dedicated to wind and solar power, Calgary is a sought-after host city for natural resources and renewable energy conferences.

Infographic - Calgary Energy Sector

The Global Petroleum Show has been convening in Calgary for over fifty years. North America’s largest conference for oil and gas professionals, GPS welcomes some 50,000 thought-leaders, industry influencers and professionals from 100 countries to Calgary for three days of keynote speeches, technical presentations and panel discussions on the future of the industry. In 2018, the show added an conference element to its roster, bringing together senior level players to discuss access to global markets, share industry efficiencies, and explore evolving technologies.

“With the highest concentration head offices per capita in Canada, Calgary has a wealth of intellectual capital in the energy industry -  which is what keeps the event rooted in Calgary,” notes Greg Newton, director of business development, Calgary Stampede.  

GPS is hosted at BMO Stampede Park, and Newton also notes the venue plays a key role in keeping the annual event in Calgary, “The Global Petroleum Show is able to showcase large equipment that wouldn’t fit on the traditional trade show floor. The space at Stampede Park truly allows for events to think big and get creative about how they want to present.”

Calgary, AB

The Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (ATCE) is the flagship event of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, the largest individual-member organization dedicated to engineers, scientists and other professionals in the oil and gas industry. Some 6,000 delegates attend ATCE to enhance their technical knowledge through some 350 presentations, 80 conference sessions and networking opportunities with 250+ exhibitors. With head offices of every major company in the upstream, midstream and downstream sectors located in the city, Calgary was a natural choice for the 2019 conference.

“For the first time in its 95-year history, the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition will be held in Canada. SPE’s flagship event will bring international oil and gas professionals to Calgary and will provide an opportunity for Canadian companies to showcase their wealth of knowledge and technology. And with more than 4,800 professional members in Canada, it allows SPE to bring high-quality, multidisciplinary technical content to its members’ backyard,” says Stephen Graham, chief operations officer, Society of Petroleum Engineers.

Some 43 per cent of Canada’s installed wind generation capacity is operated by Calgary-based energy companies, making the city one of the country’s centres of excellence in renewable energies. Add in the innovations being created through University of Calgary’s Centre for Advanced Solar Materials and the Calgary Advanced Energy Storage and Conversion Research Group, and you’ve got a wealth of local knowledge experts to help round out conference agendas.

Solar Panels

Jessica Ward, a planner who recently convened the Solar Canada conference in Calgary says it was easy to incorporate local expertise in their programming, “We sought out as much local tie-ins as possible. The University of Calgary’s solar racing car was a fun way to highlight one of Calgary’s local success stories.  They are an award-winning team that competes in the World Solar Challenge.  We also like to highlight electric vehicles (EV) at our event as it ties in to solar.” Access to the resources at the University of Calgary was through connections with Meetings and Conventions Calgary, “MCC is such a great resource and local champion,” Ward enthused.

Fueling much of the research and innovation in Canada’s natural resources sector are institutions like the University of Calgary, the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT), the Clean Resource Innovation Network (CRIN), IBM’s Natural Resources Solution Centre and the GE Innovation Centre who all offer a depth of local resources to add to any conference agenda.

Meetings and Conventions Calgary is the link between convention planners and local industry experts. Learn more about meeting in Calgary, here.