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National Energy Board approves export licences for Pacific NorthWest LNG, BG Group

An artist rendering of the BG Group terminal on Ridley Island. - Contributed photo
An artist rendering of the BG Group terminal on Ridley Island.
— image credit: Contributed photo

Both LNG terminals being considered for the Prince Rupert area cleared another hurdle on Dec. 16 as the National Energy Board approved export licences for both Pacific NorthWest LNG and the BG Group's proposed Prince Rupert LNG Exports Ltd.

Pacific NorthWest LNG's export licence allows for an annual export of 19.68 million metric tonnes for a 25 year period from the Lelu Island terminal, while the BG Group's licence allows for the annual export of 21.6 million metric tonnes of LNG for the sane 25 year period.

Although the licences are now subject to government approval, Pacific NorthWest LNG said having the licence in hand is a positive step forward for the company.

"The National Energy Board Decision to grant an export license to Pacific NorthWest LNG is a significant milestone for our project. The license, still subject to final approval by the federal cabinet, would give our project certainty to export liquefied natural gas over a 25 year period," said Spencer Sproule, senior advisor of corporate affairs for Pacific NorthWest LNG, noting work on the project is ongoing.

"We are continuing to make tremendous progress on all aspects of our project. We are on track with the detailed design of the project and expect to submit our environmental assessment to the BC Environmental Assessment Office and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency in early-2014."

WCC LNG Ltd., representing Imperial Oil and ExxonMobil Canada, was also approved for an LNG export licence for 30 million metric tonnes per year over 25 years. The company has yet to announce where the terminal would be located, but the National Energy Board decision states the terminal "would be located in the vicinity of either Kitimat or Prince Rupert, British Columbia.

News of the export licences were welcomed by Minister of Natural Gas Development Rich Coleman.

"Now that the NEB has approved the applications, we look forward to a timely decision from the federal government so that we can ensure these companies are positioned to make final investment decisions as quickly as possible."

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