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our operations Canada’s 85-year journey from discovery to modern production

3 min read | september 08, 2023

Operations in the Alberta oil sands are buzzing with machinery and modern equipment.

Chevron’s Canadian operations began in 1938, when a U.S. geologist for Standard Oil Co. of California was sent on a singular mission: Strike oil.

John Galloway, who led a team of geologists and seismologists, failed to find riches among the southern Alberta plains for several months. Within a year, however, his team began drilling our first well.

That journey paved the way for decades of success that we celebrate as we mark Chevron Canada’s 85th anniversary.

John Galloway, a geologist, led a hunt for oil in Turner Valley, which an article in The Calgary Daily Herald said was then “recognized as one of the major crude fields in the North American continent.”

how far we’ve come

Our work in Canada has come a long way. Each decade has marked a new era of progress, with technology and innovation unlocking new opportunities.

Since drilling our first well, Chevron has boosted Canada’s economy through 1.6 billion barrels of legacy production.

Another major milestone happened in the 1990s with the construction of Hibernia, an offshore oil and gas platform in Atlantic Canada.

Its first well started flowing in 1997 at a rate of 40,000 barrels per day, making it the most prolific well in Canadian history at the time.

As of 2022, Chevron Canada produced 139,000 barrels of net oil equivalent per day.

image of an oil rig over the water

Hibernia platform kick-started Atlantic Canada’s offshore energy industry.

why it matters

Canada’s energy sector is a leading economic driver for the nation, providing jobs and valuable tax revenue.


jobs supported throughout Canada
in 2022

$755 billion

in tax revenues from 2000 to 2021
icon of oil barrels

4.7 million

barrels of crude oil exported per day
in 2022

a snapshot in time

Jim MacDonald began working as a photographer with Chevron Canada in 1981, developing film in the company darkroom. He has seen his career evolve tremendously with digitization and the advent of the internet.

Today, he’s among Chevron Canada’s longest-serving employees. Reflecting on his 42-year tenure at Chevron, MacDonald said it’s the employees who make the place special.

“A lot has changed during my career, but the people have always been very down-to-earth. Titles may vary, but the attitude has always been the same.”

jim macdonald
senior graphics and visual advisor

giving back

Steve Hutchison, now retired, began working for Chevron Canada as a process engineer in Fox Creek, Alberta in 1979.

Throughout his 37-year career with Chevron, he said two things stood out: technology and people.

When they’re not working, our employees and retirees can sometimes be found supporting their communities through activities like growing vegetables to support food banks and preparing meals for those in need.

“We have fantastic employees with high values, who really give back to the community. My loyalty to Chevron throughout my professional life is a testament to those people.”

steve hutchison
president chevron retiree network group of alberta

The spirit of volunteerism, whether from proud retirees like Hutchison or current employees, is alive and thriving in the region.

During preparations for Chevron Canada’s 85th anniversary in May, we were prompted to redirect our efforts in response to the Alberta wildfires. Volunteers gathered donations, hosted a community BBQ for evacuees and raised funds to support those affected. Employees also came together to support each other during an uncertain time.

“Throughout my years at Chevron, I’ve watched the company step up in times of need,” MacDonald said. “It’s nice to see that legacy continue.”

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