Nisga’a LNG proponents file with Canadian regulators
Proponents of the proposed 12mn mt/yr Ksi Lisims (pronounced s’lisims, which means ‘from the Nass River’ in the Nisga’a language) LNG project on BC’s northern coast said July 19 they had filed an initial project description (IPD) with provincial and federal regulatory authorities.
The IPD was filed under the terms of BC’s 2018 Environmental Assessment Act and Canada’s 2019 Impact Assessment Act by Nisga’a Nation, on whose traditional lands the project is proposed, Rockies LNG of Calgary and Houston-based Western LNG. Early engagement provides a pathway for the proponents to ensure environmental impacts of the project are minimised and benefits to affected communities are maximised.
Ksi Lisims LNG is proposed as a floating liquefaction and marine terminal project at Wil Milit, on the northern tip of Pearse Island near the Nisga’a village of Gingolx, north of Prince Rupert. At full build-out, it would process about 56.6mn m3/day of natural gas and store it on two or three permanently installed floating modules with integrated storage capacity of about 450,000 m3 of LNG.
Developing Ksi Lisims LNG would generate a total direct and indirect economic impact of some C$55bn (US$43.6bn), including the liquefaction terminal, associated infrastructure and upstream activities, with development of feed gas reserves over the 30-year life of the project estimated at about C$45bn of the total. Under existing timelines, a final investment decision is expected in early 2024, with commercial operations expected to begin in late 2027 or early 2028.
Modules would be fabricated at yards in Asia and floated into place on Nisga’a waters at the project site. On-shore construction of associated facilities would employ a peak on-site workforce of about 200, the proponents said in the IPD, while operations would create about 150-200 full-time jobs.
“Attracting an economic base to the Nass Valley has long been a priority for the Nisga’a Nation,” Nisga’a Nation president Eva Clayton said. “This is why, for close to a decade, our Nation has worked to attract a world-leading LNG project to our treaty lands, and why we are proud to commence the formal regulatory process for our project.”
The Nisga’a is one of the few First Nations in BC with a formal treaty with the provincial and federal governments, signed in 2000. It gives the First Nation treaty rights to more than 26,000 km2, including the proposed site on Pearse Island, and the right to assess such projects for their environmental and other impacts.
Natural gas will be moved to Ksi Lisims through one of two pipelines from northeastern BC that have already received regulatory approvals, TC Energy’s Prince Rupert Gas Transmission (PRGT) pipeline and Enbridge’s Westcoast Connector Gas Transmission pipeline. PRGT also has authorisations in hand from the BC Oil & Gas Commission.
“Ksi Lisims will provide Canadian natural gas producers with new access to growing global energy markets, and importantly, global LNG prices,” Rockies LNG CEO Charlotte Raggett said. “We look forward to working with the Nisga’a Nation, other First Nations, governments and stakeholders as we advance Ksi Lisims LNG.”
Like the Anglo-Dutch Shell-led LNG Canada project south of Prince Rupert at Kitimat, Ksi Lisims would use low-carbon natural gas from the Montney fields of northeastern BC and northwestern Alberta, and also from the Deep Basin in Alberta. Its proponents have committed to reaching net zero status within three years of commencing operations, and are exploring carbon capture and storage (CCS) options for removing what CO2there is in the feed gas stream.
“Fuelled by clean BC hydropower and supplied by low-carbon Canadian natural gas, Ksi Lisims LNG will achieve one of the lowest unit carbon emissions rates for a large-scale LNG export project, making net zero both feasible and achievable,” Western LNG CEO Davis Thames said. “Our floating design is central to delivering a project in a remote location on time and on budget, and we have commercial concepts we believe will be attractive to Pacific Basin customers.”