As industrialization spread in the early 1900s so too did the need for oil and gas, and exploration for these resources introduced Canada as a player in world energy markets. Oil and gas boomed after World War II, and the discovery of oil in Leduc saw companies like Fluor coming to Canada to support this burgeoning industry.
“Fluor opened in Toronto in 1949 and then came west to better serve markets. Originally it was very much engineering focused and that, of course, has evolved with time,” says Tasha Sherbanuk, General Manager, Fluor Canada.
Fluor Corporation, founded in California in 1912, saw the immense potential to the north and established a Canadian presence that has grown in size and scope ever since. In 1973, the Canadian headquarters relocated to Calgary and over the years it has become a global leader spearheading some of the most impactful projects in the industry. From its first refinery in British Columbia in the 1940s to Canada’s first large LNG export facility for global markets today, Fluor Canada has shaped the energy industry, all the while diversifying and leading the charge toward a more sustainable future.
As the industry changed and methodologies and priorities shifted, Fluor evolved to meet the new demands and expectations. As part of one of the largest publicly traded engineering, procurement, construction and maintenance companies in the world, Fluor Canada is at the forefront of the industry providing clients with the gamut of professional and technical services. While the company may have been built on oil and gas, Fluor Canada has broadened its client base to tackle a range of innovative projects across the country.
“When people think of Fluor they think about energy projects, which is certainly true but we also have a mining and metals office in Vancouver which we often collaborate with, and what we’ve really seen in this office is the diversity of the markets that we serve has really expanded over time,” says Sherbanuk.
Diversifying over the past years has produced expertise not only in oil and gas and petrochemicals but also infrastructure, advanced technologies and life sciences, mining and metals, and operations and maintenance. Within those spaces, Fluor provides every element of full-project execution with specialists in project management, engineering, procurement, fabrication and construction as well as commissioning, start up and maintenance. From nuclear projects to the Gordie Howe International Bridge to a renewable diesel facility in Alberta’s Industrial Heartland, Fluor delivers quality solutions economically, safely and on time and now, in its 75th year, Fluor continues to diversify and add new market segments.
“The markets are quite lively at the moment and that gives us the opportunity to grow, and we’ve got expertise in whichever area clients want to build in,” says Sherbanuk.
The company is dedicated to helping clients succeed whatever the project. While the team executes brilliantly on large scope, multibillion dollar projects, the MPG Multi-Projects Group® produces exceptional results on small- to mid-sized sustaining capital projects involving revamps and improvements to existing facilities. There is little Fluor can’t do.
“If you can engineer and build it, we’ve probably done it. And if not in Canada somewhere across the world,” says Lisa Listgarten, Director of Project Operations, Fluor Canada.
With a Calgary staff of more than 1,000 backed by another 500 across the country, thousands of trade partners and 40,000 Fluor professionals in more than 60 countries, the company is setting its sights on facilitating the energy transition.
Creating a Sustainable Future Through Energy Transition
Today’s clients are seeking cleaner energy solutions and Fluor stands shoulder to shoulder with its client partners as it works to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve energy efficiency and deliver clean, renewable projects in Canada and beyond. From technologies that will help meet the global demand for batteries to incorporating ammonia in the energy transition, Fluor and its clients are committed to sustainability.
Hydrogen offers an attractive path to clean fuel and the team delivers projects surrounding hydrogen storage and transportation as well as projects producing all hydrogen types—from green hydrogen from renewably powered electrolysis or biomass gasification to blue hydrogen acquired through carbon capture—in order to create a clean energy carrier with minimal carbon emissions.
After all, eliminating carbon emissions is the goal, and the growing possibilities of post-combustion and pre-combustion carbon capture are energizing the Fluor team and attracting young professionals to the company. Fluor has been implementing carbon capture strategies for more than 30 years and has a licensed technology called Econamine FG PlusSM that uses a solvent to capture carbon dioxide from large post-combustion single-point emissions sources like power plants and refineries. Despite the incredible inroads Fluor and other innovators have made in this area, the road to energy transition remains wide open and inviting.
“The energy transition is in its infancy when you think about where we are from a project standpoint. We’ve been supporting clients on the front end, helping them develop their decarbonization strategies right from the grassroots and we’ll continue to support them through the phases of their projects,” says Ryan Viljoen, Director of Business Development and Strategy.
Fluor also has its own net zero and carbon neutral goals to attain and to help achieve them the company installed solar panels on the Canadian headquarter’s roof, converted to LED lights throughout the building and installed EV chargers in the parking lot and parkade. And that is just the beginning; the team is always looking for ways to improve efficiency inhouse as well as on clients’ projects to help fulfil Fluor’s purpose to ‘Build a Better World’.
“There’s still a tremendous amount of study work being explored, and we’ve got a great group of process technology experts who are very excited about getting into some really interesting spaces, things that we’ve not really talked about before in terms of looking at opportunities and trying to figure out how to help shape projects so they can be economic,” says Sherbanuk.
It’s the trailblazing, excited members of the talented Fluor team over the decades that helped build a 75-year legacy that continues to grow and thrive.
“We can’t do what we do without our people. We are in the people business. Yes, we build amazing things but our people design, they engineer, they procure, they construct those things, so without them we can’t help our clients and the business doesn’t survive,” says Viljoen.
The leadership team values these people and supports and invests in them to ensure they remain healthy, engaged and enthusiastic about what they are doing. People matter at Fluor, and the company prides itself on walking the talk with its great benefits and professional development programs. Its incredible support of staff earned Fluor the Benefits Canada Workplace Benefits Award for its policies that include flexible work options, wellness spending accounts, additional paid time off and greater attention to mental health.
Fluor must be doing something right. Named a Top Employer in Alberta and one of Canada’s Top Employers for Young People two years in a row, the company attracts a lot of new graduates, and these people tend to stick around. There’s a huge number of long-tenured employees, some with more than 40 years with the company, and many will spend their entire careers with Fluor. While some become subject matter experts in their discipline, many others choose to grow their skillset and expertise in other areas of the business. This allows employees to embark on several different careers, whether that involves moving to another wing of the office to serve a new function or filling a position at a branch across the world, all without venturing from under the Fluor umbrella.
To continue to enrich staff experiences and support them throughout their careers at Fluor, the company offers a number of employee resource groups (ERGs) surrounding diversity, equity and inclusion. Leadership programs for both new graduates and more experienced employees, groups geared at developing women into leadership roles and the newly launched Pride ERG all provide professional development, mentorship and social connections across the organization. On top of that, online and in-person courses through Fluor University® and boot camps that dive into a variety of topics ranging from project management to piping build resumés and can lead to amazing opportunities to branch out and experience a different aspect of the business.
“I think Fluor is really good at looking ahead while building its pipeline and going not just where we need to be today but where we need to be tomorrow and making sure we’re here for the next 75 years plus,” says Listgarten.
Fluor is a community, and its members are eager to share their experience and knowledge as others did for them. It’s part of the company’s culture of giving back, whether that’s through formal and informal mentoring at work or supporting the greater community through donations, sponsorship or with time. Fluor supports a variety of causes every year, showing up for close to 30 years to flip pancakes at Fluor Rope Square, participating in the river clean up, filling backpacks with school supplies for disadvantaged youth or riding in the Tour Alberta for Cancer event. As individuals and as a company, Fluor has long-standing partnerships with organizations that support community members in need like Hull Services, Calgary Food Bank, United Way and most recently the Diamond Willow Youth Lodge, an urban Indigenous youth hub.
Since the beginning, teamwork has been a core value at the company and through strong partnerships with the community, its clients and the professionals within the organization, Fluor Canada is well positioned to continue to grow and lead the industry into the next 75 years.
MPG Multi-Projects Group and Fluor University are registered service marks of Fluor Corporation.
Econamine FG Plus is a service mark of Fluor Corporation.