Among the goods industries, the fastest growth in employment between 2001 and 20062 occurred in the mining and oil and gas extraction industry.
According to the census, employment in mining and oil and gas extraction reached 222,700 by 2006, an annual average gain of 7.5%. This was almost four times the national average of 1.7%. Alberta alone accounted for 70% of the employment growth in this industry. While employment in all parts of this industry increased, by far the fastest pace of growth was in oil and gas.
Employment increased a strong 4.5% per year on average in the larger construction sector. During the five-year period, this sector added an estimated 196,200 workers to its ranks, bringing total employment to 991,200 in 2006.
With the rapid expansion of the western economy, the gain in construction in the West was more significant. In fact, the combined increase in construction employment in Alberta and British Columbia exceeded the increase in this industry in the much larger Ontario–Quebec region.
Figure 2 Industry employment level changes, 2001 to 2006