Moving forward with historic $40 billion LNG Canada project means natural gas from Canada will receive its fair market value as Asian countries, desperate to lower their climate impacts, use cleaner gas to displace coal.
LNG Canada will bring decades of quiet prosperity to Canada once it is completed several years from now. Gas deposits in northeast British Columbia and Alberta contain abundant amounts of natural gas that will be converted into liquid for overseas shipping. The Montney region alone holds enough gas to be able to supply LNG Canada for at least a century based on current proven reserves.
Over time, new wells will need to be drilled and the economic activity from this will create jobs, a wide-ranging goods-and-services supply chain, and revenues that flow to all levels of government.
The second major effect is that the Asian countries backing the project – China, Japan, Korea and Malaysia – will acquire a reliable source of lower-carbon natural gas to help them lower their emissions. LNG Canada, alone, will be capable of removing the equivalent of 19 million cars from the road if the gas is used to replace coal-fired electricity.
And while LNG Canada may be the first large-scale plant in Canada, the decision is likely to increase the confidence of other proponents who have been toiling away for years on their own proposals. If the math works for the Shell-led consortium, why wouldn't it work for others? British Columbia would well see another one, two or even three LNG plants on its coast.
All of these factors combine to make Oct. 2, 2018 a day to remember in Canadian energy history.