Alberta’s energy sector has shown impressive resiliency over the last few years. Despite cancelled pipeline projects and sustained periods of depressed prices, the province’s oil production more than doubled in the last decade, and GPD generated from the sector rose 25% in the same period (hitting its peak of $91 billion in 2019).

Nevertheless, there are 36,000 fewer oil and gas workers compared to the industry’s 2013 peak, representing a 22% decline. Aside from job losses caused by challenged markets, this trend can also be attributed to overall efficiency gains made through new drilling technologies and the consolidation of industry players. Notwithstanding optimism about the sector’s recovery, there is a sentiment that some jobs are unlikely to return, given proof that it takes fewer people to get the work done.

This trend toward greater efficiency has also made its way into oil and gas in-house legal teams. The energy sector now employs a smaller percentage of Canadian in-house lawyers than before, falling from 11% in 2016 to 7% in 2020. In-house teams have shrunk, with those remaining counsel taking on more duties and farming less of their corporate-commercial work to outside firms. Other companies are making the decision to forego having an in-house lawyer altogether, relying on law firm lawyers, but hopefully not to the extent that it erodes net savings compared to keeping a salaried staff member.

It’s a balance between the bottom line and managing a company’s risks. A company that overly relies on the implicit legal knowledge of their business leaders, or overstretches the time and attention of their in-house lawyers, may leave itself open for an issue to slip through the cracks, which could later become a significant liability.

Gusto Law serves as a solution for energy sector companies trying to get more done on a smaller budget. We perform senior-level legal work at a significant discount compared to traditional firms, and help companies avoid the long-term commitment of adding a full-time hire.
Gus Lu has had extensive experience on many upstream, midstream and service sector matters, including:

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Calgary Oil & Gas Lawyer


  • The purchase and sale of mineral rights;
  • Surface rights-of-way, leases and licenses;
  • Due diligence on mineral rights title and transfers; and
  • Joint operating agreement and production-pool governance issues.


  • Acquisition and disposition of midstream assets;
  • Project financing;
  • Joint venture agreements;
  • EPCC agreements;
  • Construction services agreements;
  • Large equipment procurement agreements;
  • Operator agreements;
  • Land purchases, co-location agreements and licenses;
  • Gas purchase and sale agreements (take-or-pays);
  • Pipeline interconnection agreements; and
  • Electricity supply agreements.

Energy Services

  • Master services agreements; and
  • Transportation services agreements;
  • Equipment financing and purchases; and
  • The coordination of requests for proposals, and requests for quotes.

Gus has also served oil and gas clients on a variety of general corporate-commercial matters, including:

  • Business formation;
  • Legal research;
  • Transaction due diligence;
  • Corporate governance;
  • Regulatory compliance (AER, AUC, ABSA, US DOT and OHS);
  • Insurance matters;
  • Finance and banking;
  • Mergers & acquisitions;
  • Dispute resolution;
  • Private equity investment;
  • Public company reporting obligations;
  • Employment matters;
  • Health and safety;
  • Intellectual property; and
  • Company policy development.

Contact a Calgary Oil & Gas Lawyer

If you would like to discuss your oil and gas business’s needs, schedule a free 20-minute consultation. 

This webpage’s content has been prepared to provide a general overview of certain legal services offered by Gusto Law, and is not intended to be an exhaustive legal analysis. It is not a substitute for legal advice and should not be relied upon for any particular transaction, proceeding or circumstance. The information is provided as of the date set out below, and thus the reader is cautioned that changes or developments in the law, or its interpretation, may have occurred since that time. If you are forming a new business, please seek further individual consultation with Gusto Law.

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Client Reviews

Friendly and Helpful

I have been a client of Gus Lu for 3 years for both personal and business matters. He has been involved with share purchase agreements that required negotiating with the seller, doing the paperwork, and ensuring that things were kept on track with any necessary reminders — to both parties as I have been known to procrastinate. His polite insistence on getting what I needed to be ensured that the other parties knew that we meant business — while maintaining good relationships. I really appreciate the patience he shows when I want to understand every bit of legalese — I can count on him to clearly explain matters. Mr. Lu’s lawyerly skill at stating things in a tactful and concise manner has helped me out in many of my business communications and documents. I very much appreciate how Gus would always deal with my requests in a prompt and friendly manner. He truly made me feel cared for and supported in any dealings with him.

A. Walker

October 2021

Fast and Effective

When you need something done, Gus will get it done right and quickly.

B. Ross

September 2021

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