Texas has risen to the top in an annual survey of oil and natural gas investment preferences by the Fraser Institute, the Canadian-based policy and economics research firm.
Alberta, informerly known for years as the “Texas of Canada,” tumbled into 16th place among 20 fossil fuel-producing jurisdictions ranked by the Fraser poll issued on Thursday.
The United States owns all Top 10 spots in the 2019 edition of the survey, which collected views from 81 senior industry executives.
In order of attractiveness after Texas are Oklahoma, Kansas, Wyoming, the Gulf of Mexico, North Dakota, Alabama, New Mexico, Montana and Mississippi.
The highest-ranked Canadian jurisdiction in the oil and gas investor contest was Saskatchewan, in 13th place. British Columbia, although rich in shale gas and liquid byproducts, hovered at 19th.
The survey asked 16 questions on topics that affect oil and gas investment decisions to create a policy perception index that records perceptions of barriers.
“Investors pointed to the uncertainty concerning environmental regulations, taxation and regulatory duplication and inconsistencies as major areas of concern in Canadian provinces compared to U.S. states,” Fraser researchers said.
“In 2019, only 9% of respondents in Texas and 12% of respondents in Oklahoma indicated that uncertainty concerning environmental regulations was a deterrent to investment there.”
The Canadian oil and gas jurisdictions stood out as hotbeds of regulatory deterrence against supply development. “In British Columbia it was an issue for 94% and in Alberta a problem for 80% of respondents.”
National, state and provincial taxes also figured into low Canadian fossil fuel investment grades, according to the institute.
“Overall, investors expressed heightened concern over taxation in Canada compared to the United States. The percentage of respondents indicating that taxation in general was deterring investment was, on average, 60% for Canada compared to only 32% for the United States.”