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Alberta incorporates energy war room as Canadian Energy Centre, work starts soon

Will be run by Tom Olsen, a former journalist and UCP candidate in last election
Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage

EDMONTON — Alberta's energy war room is now on a legal footing and will soon be up and running.

Energy Minister Sonya Savage told the legislature the war room is now incorporated and will be formally titled the Canadian Energy Centre.

Savage says the centre will focus on improving the reputation of Alberta's oil and gas sector and challenging those it believes are delivering misinformation.

She announced it will be run by Tom Olsen, a former journalist and a United Conservative candidate in the last election.

She says the centre will create its own content, work with stakeholders, analyze data and have a rapid response unit to challenge perceived misinformation in real time.

The $30-million centre is part of what Premier Jason Kenney has termed a "fight-back" strategy against those he says are unfairly denigrating the industry and contributing to the landlocking of Alberta's non-renewable resources.

The province has also launched a $2.5-million public inquiry into foreign funding of anti-oil advocacy groups.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 9, 2019.

The Canadian Press