Kids join rally in Fort St. John in support of natural gas export industry that featured truck parades in northeast communities.

B.C. LNG projects get new momentum

Woodfibre LNG wins federal approval, major shift by Las Kwa'laams to support Prince Rupert port with conditions

The Woodfibre LNG project at a former pulp mill site near Squamish has received federal environmental approval, ending a week of optimism for the B.C. natural gas industry.

Federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna announced Friday that the Woodfibre project has been found unlikely to cause significant adverse environmental effects. The project received provincial approval in October 2015 after a joint review coordinated by B.C.

McKenna and the federal cabinet are deliberating on a much larger proposal for liquefied natural gas exports from Prince Rupert, the Pacific Northwest LNG plant and pipeline led by Malaysian energy giant Petronas.

The Pacific Northwest LNG project got a boost this week when the Lax Kwa’laams Band council reversed its opposition to a terminal at Lelu Island, notifying McKenna that it would support the plan with two conditions.

Rallies and truck parades were held in Fort St. John and Fort Nelson this week to urge the federal government to approve LNG projects to provide an export market for B.C. gas.

A glut of natural gas across North America has brought drilling activity in northeastern B.C. gas fields to a near-halt, with a recent sale of drilling rights by the B.C. government attracting no sales for the first time in the industry’s 50-year history.

Energy Minister Bill Bennett said northeast coal mines are idle in addition to a slump in gas activity, and people are worried.

“The two communities up there that are probably the worst off are Tumbler Ridge and Fort Nelson,” Bennett said. “Folks in the Lower Mainland are typically shielded from the ups and downs of the natural resource industries, but if you live in Fort Nelson or Tumbler Ridge or Cranbrook or Williams Lake, you’re not shielded. You feel it.”

Premier Christy Clark said the federal government is looking closely at the economic impact of LNG development, with Alberta, Saskatchewan and Newfoundland’s oil industries also hurting.

“Over 30 years, 100,000 jobs and a trillion dollars potentially in GDP growth, that’s a big number,” Clark said.

“If they’re thinking about First Nations, they will spend some time thinking about  all of the First Nations members who have signed agreements to support LNG, who will be part of building LNG, the environmental stewards.”

 

Just Posted

O’Reilly trial scheduled to start January 15 for Anahim Lake murders

O’Reilly is charged with first-degree murder

School District 49 to re-open Nusatsum Elementary in September 2018

SD49 says increasing enrollment is driving its decision to re-open the school

Red Cross funding available to local residents of Bella Coola and Hagensborg

The Red Cross is administering up to $900 in initial funding to help assist Bella Coola Valley residents

VIDEO: Orcas put on a show near Hornby Island

Louis Jobodin shares photos and video of his experience

Body discovered in burnt out car near Trail

Police report a body was found in the burnt out trunk of a 1999 Honda Civic

VIDEO: B.C. Lions sign defensive back T.J. Lee to contract for upcoming season

The four-year veteran had a team-high four interceptions and 49 tackles last season with B.C.

How an immigrant to Canada helped Donald Trump prove his mental health

Test that cleared Trump was developed by doctor associated with McGill and Sherbrooke universities

Premier touches on multiple topics ahead of Asia trade trip

Housing and childcare are expected to be the focus of the BC NDP’s first budget in February.

UPDATE: Friends mourn boy, 15, killed in Vancouver shooting

John Horgan: ‘No stone is to be left unturned until we find the perpetrator of this heinous crime’

VIDEO: Explorers uncover Canada’s deepest cave in Fernie

The cave, named Bisaro Anima, was confirmed to have broken the record on New Year’s Day

Players sought for National Aboriginal Hockey Championships

ISPARC calls for bantam/midget players to register for selection camp in Kamloops

New funding opens for industry innovation

Northern Development Initiative Trust opened new funds, focused on areas impacted by the pine beetle

Most Read