First Nations LNG Alliance Newsletter 07 – A step forward for LNG in BC

A step forward for LNG in BC

Congratulations to LNG Canada for another step forward in the long march toward the finishing line for a $40-billion plant and terminal at Kitimat.

The company has selected two candidates to be the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contractors for the project. They are two partnerships: one of TechnipFMC plc and KBR, Inc., and the other of JGC Corporation and Fluor Corporation.

LNG Canada noted: “While shortlisting of two Proposers is a significant milestone for the LNG Canada project, there is still much work that remains to be done to deliver a globally competitive project.”

We at the First Nations LNG Alliance have hopes of a positive Final Investment Decision from LNG Canada later this year.

And we know that the second big project proposed for the Kitimat area, Kitimat LNG, is still working on its plans.

One point of note about both companies is their commitment to work with First Nations.

Chief Councillor Crystal Smith of the Haisla Nation: “We are the experts when it comes to our Haisla Territory and the environment that surrounds us. If we have any issues regarding work in our traditional territory and what we value as important to the Haisla people, they have worked with us, and continue to work with us, to meet our concerns.”

(You’ll soon see more from Chief Crystal when we launch a series of stories on our website, on First Nations that support responsible LNG development.)

It was good, too, to hear Premier John Horgan’s comments on his return last week from an Asian trade mission in which BC LNG was a big feature.

He said he was taken back by the air-quality challenges Asian countries face, and he believes there’s a major opportunity for BC LNG to be a part of the solution. “There’s significant desire, although there is a current glut on the LNG market, which we are well aware of, there is opportunity in the future.”

(Mind you, Royal Dutch Shell CEO Ben van Beurden says the “glut” is not what it seems. “The LNG glut, it’s conspicuously absent, isn’t it?”)

There was a sharp reduction in the anti-LNG tweets of BC Green Party leader Andrew Weaver, following a phone conversation with the premier.

But Weaver insists: “I haven’t backed up one inch. Not one inch. The thing I have been reassured of by Mr. Horgan is that he claims that they are going to make meeting our (emissions-reduction) targets a condition of anything.”

Supporters of responsible LNG development have been taking the high road in the emissions debate with such postings as this one below, emphasizing that the key is global reduction of emissions; since emissions know no borders.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau kept telling town-hall meetings across Western Canada last week that it’s not the economy or the environment; it’s the balance between them.

“We need to make sure we’re both protecting the environment and growing the economy at the same time.”

Our position is clear:  The First Nations LNG Alliance is a collective of First Nations who are participating in, and supportive of, sustainable and responsible LNG development in BC. We say you can have development and respect the environment at the same time.

Now we await his government’s promised major reforms of environmental and regulatory reviews of big energy projects. Will they help or hinder the future development of LNG?