Nova Scotia edges ahead
For all of its huffing and puffing and inflated promises of leading the way in establishing an LNG industry in Canada, British Columbia may end up trailing the East Coast in starting exports.
Liquefied Natural Gas Ltd. of Australia said it now has all of the necessary Canadian regulatory clearances for its subsidiary Bear Head LNG Corp. to begin commercial shipments from Nova Scotia in 2019.
Construction could start this year on a facility expected to cost an initial C$4 billion and come onstream at 8 million metric tons a year.
A federal permit covering 25 years allows Bear Head to increase exports to 12 million metric tons a year in 2024.
Gas supplies not locked upBut Bear Head has yet to lock up a deal to obtain gas supplies from the Marcellus formation.
The company is waiting for the United States Energy Department to approve its application to ship 503 billion cubic feet a year across three U.S. states to the Nova Scotia liquefaction and tanker terminal.
The Australian company revived the project in mid-2014 when it purchased the 250-acre site from Anadarko, which obtained regulatory approval a decade ago, but was forced to mothball the scheme when it was unable to find a gas supplier.
Victor David, warden of Richmond County which includes the terminal site, said he is impressed that Bear Head is proceeding as planned.
“I’m impressed they are moving as fast as they are and I hope they continue at that pace,” he said.
Project director John Godbold told a Canadian LNG conference last fall that Nova Scotia has better shipping access to Europe than any other place in North America, making that an obvious market.
In addition, he said Bear Head is exploring sales in Argentina, India and other Asian countries.
- Gary Park