Recent Judicial Decisions of Interest to Energy Lawyers


  • Sophie Lorefice
  • Changhai Zhu
  • Sean Fairhurst
  • Matthew Potts



Last year’s submission canvassed judicial decisions that were released prior to, and post-implementation of, COVID-19 restrictions. The advent of COVID-19 caused unprecedented economic and social disruption and no industry or social institution was immune to its effect. Alberta was already attempting to manage one of the highest unemployment rates among the provinces when the COVID-19 pandemic exacted its multi-faceted toll. One aspect was a serious decline in the demand for oil, which further impacted oil prices, and the very manner in which energy industry participants would operate in the near and longer terms. The judiciary, and the broader legal system, suffered no less an impact, and extraordinary measures were taken to maintain the rule of law and preserve meaningful access to justice.

Notwithstanding the extraordinary circumstances all have endured since March 2020, many reported decisions of significance to energy industry participants have been released by Canadian courts over the past year. This article summarizes a selection of key decisions covering developments in the Canadian law of contract, energy, environment, insolvency, Aboriginal, employment and labour, minority shareholder’s rights, as well as developments in civil litigation procedure. In each topic area the identified cases are reviewed with respect to their facts, a summary of the decision, and a brief commentary as to the implications or general significance of the case.