Pace Oil Shares Fall on Alberta Crude Spill: Calgary Mover

Pace Oil and Gas Ltd. fell as the oil and natural-gas producer cleans up an oil spill from a well in northern Alberta and begins an audit of its operations, Chief Executive Officer Fred Woods said.

The shares dropped 5.5 percent to C$3.07 at the close in Toronto. The stock earlier touched a record low of C$2.96.

Pace has recovered about a third of an estimated 3,500 cubic meters (22,000 barrels) of oil and water that spilled from the well near Rainbow Lake, Alberta, Woods said today in a telephone interview. The company has hired an external auditor to assess its operations for similar risks, he said.

“We’ve trenched the perimeter and we’re now in the recovery stage,” Woods said. The Calgary-based company has about 100 people working at a camp to clean up the spill.

Pace’s production hasn’t been affected by the incident and the company is sticking with its target of the equivalent of 14,500 to 15,250 barrels of oil a day for the full year, Woods said.

The well near Rainbow Lake has been shut in and Pace has hired SWAT Consulting Inc., which provides emergency spill services, to help with clean up. The company doesn’t yet know how much it will cost to clean up the spill, Woods said.

Alberta’s Energy Resources Conservation Board is investigating the cause of the spill, said Darin Barter, a spokesman for the government agency, in a phone interview yesterday. Pace doesn’t know what caused the accident, Woods said.

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