WIN! Pacific NorthWest LNG project is dead

The Council of Canadians Victoria chapter was at a noise demonstration vs the Pacific NorthWest LNG terminal outside the Union Club (where the former Clark government and industry were meeting at an LNG luncheon) on October 2, 2015. Photo by Greg Horne.

The Council of Canadians has been campaigning against the proposed Pacific NorthWest LNG project since March 2014.

This hour, the CBC reports, "The Pacific NorthWest liquid natural gas project in Port Edward, B.C. will no longer go forward. A release from Petronas said the decision to cancel the project was made after 'a careful and total review of the project amid changes in market conditions'. Anuar Taib, chair of the Pacific NorthWest LNG board, wrote that 'prolonged depressed prices and shifts in the energy industry have led us to this decision'."

BNN adds, "LNG prices have been hit by a global oversupply as numerous projects have come online, challenging the economics of the development and others that were proposed in the province. The consortium has already sunk billions into developing the natural gas fields in the B.C. interior, but the project would have required much more investment including an $11.4-billion LNG terminal in Port Edward, B.C."

This is an important win for the climate.

The terminal would have resulted in 5.3-million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions a year and another 6.5-million to 8.7-million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions would have come from the extraction and transportation of the fracked gas that would have fed the terminal. The LNG terminal and its associated upstream operations would also have consumed 5.1 million cubic metres of fresh water per year.

Council of Canadians organizer Brigette DePape visited Lelu Island (the proposed site for the terminal) in November 2015. At that time she wrote, "When I traveled there, it was heartbreaking to see what could be lost if the LNG terminal proposal goes forward: the flora banks that would be drudged up for the bridge, the fishing livelihoods of friends who rely on the salmon to feed their families, the lush forest on Lelu island that is the home to so much incredible life like the beautiful blue stellar jays."

We also wrote blogs and signed solidarity letters and with allies organized public forums, protests, film screenings, op-eds, a speaking tour, and even a phone blitz of the federal environment minister. We also encouraged people to submit their views during the official comment period last year.

To read our March 2016 letter of opposition to the project - that was submitted to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency - please click here.

Congratulations to all who were involved in speaking against this project. While Petronas is highlighting their decision was based on "depressed prices and shifts in the energy industry", sustained community and Indigenous opposition undoubtedly also factored into their final investment decision.

Further reading
The Council supports Indigenous opposition to Pacific NorthWest LNG project (September 2016)