By: Laurie Parkinson, Biologist, BSc, MSc, UBC and Eoin Finn, BSc, PhD Physics & Chemistry, MBA International Business, retired partner at KPMG
Three lines of evidence indicate the Woodfibre LNG project will be six times (6x) larger than the public and the BC Environmental Assessment Office have been told.
Woodfibre Liquefied Natural Gas appears to have far bigger export plans than they are admitting.
In section 2.4.1 of the WFLNG BC Environmental Assessment (BCEAO) application, WFLNG states: "The initial search for suitable project locations focused on sites suitable for a large-scale LNG facility and potential for future expansion." When queried as to whether or not WFLNG intends to expand this project, WFLNG's Vice President Corporate Affairs Byng Giraud’s response has always been that the plant will be sized according to the available gas supply.
FortisBC appears to be aware of expansion plans.
FortisBC, the company who will deliver the gas supply to WFLNG, has said throughout the EA process that expansion is possible, though FortisBC staff were unaware of any formal expansion plans. On March 21st, 2014, at a WFLNG/BCEAO Open House, FortisBC Project Director Art Kanzaki publicly stated that in fact there are plans to expand the project beyond what is currently proposed.
Evidence that shows WFLNG is planning for a plant 6x larger than they described in the Environmental Assessment (EA) process comes from the size of the installations they would put in place:
The BC Hydro power upgrade soon to be built for Woodfibre LNG will give it about 6x more power than it needs for present plans. (See “Woodfibre LNG Hydro Upgrade” in ”Detailed Technical Explanations”.
red = new 24” pipeline
green = old pipeline
Proposed plan: 2.4 million tonnes of LNG exported annually.
LNG tankers would load 40x/year (40 trips = 1 trip in + trip out every 8–9 days or 1 tanker passing through Howe sound every 4–5 days.)
Potential 6x increase: 14.4 million tonnes of LNG exported annually
LNG tankers would load 240x/year (240 trips = 1 trip in + trip out every 1.5 days or a tanker passing through Howe Sound once every 18 hours.)
Six-fold expansion of the Woodfibre LNG plant would significantly increase environmental impacts, wave impacts on Howe Sound beaches and infrastructure, and the serious public health and safety risks associated with LNG tankers carrying massive volumes of highly dangerous, flammable cargo through Howe Sound.