For decades, the oil sands were considered too expensive to develop on a broad scale. But technological advances in the 1990s improved energy efficiency, reduced operating costs and enhanced environmental performance.
Suncor is a pioneer of technological innovation — building a new industry from the oil sands that many said could not be developed economically. And we're proud of our track record of innovation. Our ability to meet past challenges gives us the confidence to meet the challenges we face today. Suncor continues to innovate:
- Carbon capture and storage. Suncor is a leading participant in the Integrated CO₂Network (ICO₂N), a group of 19 companies developing a framework for large-scale application of carbon capture and storage technology.
- Tailings management. We're hard at work to accelerate the reclamation of our oil sands tailings ponds — a by-product of the mining and extraction process. Suncor has developed a new approach to tailings management, which promises to help accelerate tailing ponds reclamation.
- Zero Liquid Discharge. Suncor uses a zero liquid discharge process at our MacKay River in situ facility to achieve maximum water reuse by recovering waste water from produced bitumen.
- Geothermal energy. Tapping geothermal energy could provide a low-emissions alternative to natural gas. We're working with industry to explore this option.