Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach says he's confident the province will be able to satisfy any U.S. environmental standards that could potentially affect exports from the province's oilsands south of the border.
But the province still needs more information on a measure in a new U.S. energy bill signed in December, Stelmach says.
The sweeping bill includes a provision saying the U.S. government won't buy fuel from non-conventional petroleum sources that have higher greenhouse gas emissions over the course of production than equivalent conventional fuels.
Environmentalists say the oilsands will create three times as much greenhouse gas because of the huge amount of energy required to extract the resource.
When asked about the danger of U.S. standards becoming too onerous, Stelmach said he's asked for specific information on the bill.
"What are the standards and how would the standard be applied? We have no information on that," said Stelmach.
"We're of the opinion that with continued research and technology, we will more than reduce the (required) amount of greenhouse gas emissions."
Gary Mar, the province's envoy in Washington, says Alberta will continue to work on driving down the use of water and natural gas during oilsands production while reducing the production of carbon dioxide.
"That's our best way of mitigating any effects that may have come as a result of the legislation."
At a meeting last week, Edward Markey, chairman of a House of Representatives energy subcommittee, was optimistic about how the United States can take advantage of the oilsands, said Mar.
Stelmach wrapped up a two-day visit to the U.S. capital by meeting with acting Agriculture Secretary Chuck Conner.
At a roundtable earlier in the day on North American food safety, Stelmach said the province is pleased the last barriers have been removed to the beef and cattle trade.
But he said he's worried about other escalating protectionist measures in the United States, including new inspection fees and regulatory requirements that hinder cross-border trade.
Meanwhile, some of the world's most influential environmental organizations are targeting customers for the oilsands - including the banks that finance them, the companies that develop them and the refiners and pipeliners that move the product.
Liz Barratt-Brown, spokeswoman for the Natural Resources Defence Council in the U.S., says it's now an international campaign.
Earlier this month, the group began lobbying airlines to stop using fuel derived from the Alberta oilsands and is organizing opposition to expanding pipelines to accommodate it.