Suncor Energy Inc.’s chief executive officer stepped down on Friday after a series of fatalities at the company’s oil sands sites shook confidence in its management.
(Bloomberg) — Suncor Energy Inc.’s chief executive officer stepped down on Friday after a series of fatalities at the company’s oil sands sites shook confidence in its management.
Mark Little agreed to step down as president and CEO and resign from the board of directors “effective immediately,” the company said in a release. Kris Smith, executive vice president for downstream, has been named interim CEO.
Little’s resignation came a day after a worker was killed at Suncor’s Base Plant mine in northern Alberta, the latest in a series of accidents that has prompted calls for change.
In April, Suncor investor Elliott Investment Management LP called for five directors to be added to the producer’s board and sought a management review after operational mishaps and accidents at its oil-sands projects caused the company to miss production targets.
A truck accident in January killed a contractor and injured two others at the Base Plant mine. In June of last year, a person was killed at the Syncrude mine, and two deaths occured in December 2020 at the Fort Hills mine.
Suncor’s safety record has been a contributing factor to its poor investment returns. The company’s share price has risen less than the four other major Canadian oil sands producers Cenovus Energy Inc., Canadian Natural Resources Ltd., Imperial Oil Ltd. and MEG Energy Corp.