Richmond — The federal Liberal government has given conditional approval to the massive Pacific NorthWest LNG project planned for British Columbia’s northwest coast.
The Environment Minister Catherine McKenna, Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr and Fisheries Minister Dominic LeBlanc traveled to Richmond, B.C., to announce Ottawa’s acceptance of what is expected to be one of the largest infrastructure investments in Canadian history. They were joined by BC Premier Christy Clark.
Premier Christy Clark issued the following statement about Canada’s approval of Pacific NorthWest LNG facility proposed for northwest British Columbia:
“The Province of British Columbia welcomes today’s decision by the federal government to approve Pacific NorthWest LNG, as recommended by the National Energy Board.
“This is a significant milestone, and the last major requirement for Pacific NorthWest LNG before a final investment decision can be made. As the largest capital investment proposal in British Columbia’s history, Pacific NorthWest LNG represents an unprecedented opportunity to create thousands of jobs and new economic prospects for First Nations and communities throughout our province.
“We understand Pacific NorthWest LNG will now take the time to assess the conditions that accompany the federal approval, and review every element of their proposal to determine the best path forward.
“This facility has now completed two extensive environmental reviews, including a federal process lasting over three years. Based on the best, most extensive scientific assessments, approval has been granted from both the federal and provincial governments. Measures are in place to ensure the facility remains subject to the highest standards of environmental protection.
“At home, B.C.’s Greenhouse Gas Industrial Reporting and Control Act will ensure Pacific NorthWest LNG will operate as one of the cleanest facilities in the world. On a global scale, it will export the world’s cleanest burning fossil fuel to Asia and displace other forms of dirty energy, thereby creating a significant reduction in global emissions.
“In the meantime, we will continue to work with the proponent, the federal government, First Nations, and other stakeholders to ensure Pacific NorthWest LNG has the opportunity to deliver on its full potential.”
Pacific NorthWest LNG received an Environmental Certificate from the Government of British Columbia in 2014.
Considering his environmental promises during this past Federal Election campaign, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will undoubtedly feel political heat.
There are 190 legally binding conditions attached to the approval. That includes Pretonas spending serious money to get the project off the ground as well as other environmental hoops to jump through. Some First Nations groups in Northern BC have gone on record stating they will fight this project in court.
Once operational, the Petronas-led $36-billion liquefied natural gas project on Lelu Island near Prince Rupert, B.C., would ship 19 million tonnes a year of liquefied gas to markets in Asia.