Despite seeking and receiving a 45-day extension with the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office (BCEAO), Pacific NorthWest LNG remains confident of making a final investment decision on its proposed Lelu Island terminal by the end of the year.
“We felt it was really important to add 45 days to the BCEAO process to ensure we had all of the necessary information and feedback. It still allows a decision to be made by year’s end … and it is one way that we hope to show we are listening to the community,” said president Greg Kist during a Sept. 17 Prince Rupert and District Chamber of Commerce meeting.
“When we complete this it will be one of the most efficient LNG terminals in the world in terms of carbon dioxide emissions per tonne of liquefied natural gas.”
While making changes to the terminal as a result of feedback gathered during public consultation, including raising the height of the bridge connecting to Port Edward and the height of the jetty trestle to accommodate marine traffic, Kist said the final design of the terminal has yet to be determined.
“Capital costs around the world continue to rise and we felt one way of addressing that was to keep the process competitive. Right now we have three firms designing three terminals. They will bid those designs and one will be chosen as part of the final investment decision,” he said.
“We have three designs that we would be comfortable building and now it is just a commercial decision.”
As for the commercial side of the business, Kist said interest remains high as Petronas gears up for a decision at the end of the year.
“We have sold two-thirds of the volume of this project and when you talk about projects proceeding, you need customers,” he said.
“Petronas is currently running 22 drilling rigs in northeast B.c., so it’s not about waiting for this project. Petronas is spending a significant amount of money to prepare as we approach a final investment decision.”
With 4,500 construction jobs and 330 operational jobs to be created by the project, along with an anticipated 300 spin-off jobs, Kist said the construction of Pacific NorthWest LNG would be a major economic driver for the province.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for this province, this community and this country. When we talk about a $36 billion investment, that just gets you the first cargo of LNG being shipped,” he said.
“In our view, this is an all-in-B.C. Project, from the upstream production to the terminal.”