Over the past decade, the province of Alberta treated boom-time resource revenues like a permanent state of affairs. That set the province up for fiscal failure, for multiple lost opportunities. One high-profile example is the Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund.
There is little doubt of the severity of the financial difficulties facing Alberta. In many ways it's the late 1980s all over again. Alberta has again squandered a period of pronounced prosperity and ended up with unsustainable deficits, the likelihood of mounting debt, and no savings.