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QuestionHow can BC communities and businesses get ready to seize the opportunities coming with liquefied natural gas (LNG)?

In February 2012, government released a natural gas strategy – called British Columbia’s natural gas strategy: Fuelling BC’s economy for the next decade and beyond – and a complementary strategy that focus on developing our province’s crucial new LNG sector.

Based on current plans, industry is projected to invest up to $48 billion in LNG facilities and pipelines from 2013 to 2022, diversifying BC’s natural gas sector and facilitating new economic opportunities. Construction of three large LNG facilities and more than 1,500 kilometres of pipeline could result in 1,400 long-term jobs. Indirectly, the new LNG industry will also support thousands of spin-off jobs in the fields of transportation, engineering, construction and environmental management.

 

In addition, developing BC’s LNG export capacity will enable our province to dramatically expand market opportunities, particularly in Asia where commodity prices for natural gas are approximately four times higher than they are in North America. BC will also increase domestic market opportunity by promoting the use of BC’s natural gas in transportation fleets, such as ferries and heavy duty trucks. 

 

 

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31 Comments on this discussion

  1. bruce says:

    stop wasting taxpayers money on the self promoting tv ads.

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  2. Struan Richardson says:

    I noticed the moderator spoke of there being three tiers of employment opportunities but I think their could be more.
    The BC government should create jobs by creating its own fleet of LNG tankers crewed by Canadians.
    As it stands we get the product to the coast and load foreign flagged tankers.
    I think using Canadian vessels and crew would create jobs and increase safety on our coast.

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  3. eric gelinas says:

    Promote the market to use it, because if there is no need for it than there will be no jobs needed. Encourage car companies to produce more vehicles, specially commercial vehicles, to run on natural gas. Make natural gas cheaper than regular fuel or diesel.Promote production of commercial generators for industrial buildings. So instead just creating jobs for the LNG fields, or appliances, you expand it to the transport industry. And now with the environmental issues.LNG can be that much more interesting.

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  4. Jamie Lewin says:

    In spite of all the good intentions of government and all the potential for pipeline and construction jobs, I think that the LNG project must still be considered a proposal. I’m not the only one who still considers it a proposal. Glen Allen Stein says in his comment, “LNG proposals” “Move forward on these proposals”.

    LNG is not new and LNG proposals are not new in Canada. There has always been a lot of LNG available. During the 1980’ the federal Liberal government proposed a LNG project for Seven Islands on the north shore of the St. Lawrence River. Super tankers would discharge there and a pipe line would take it to Quebec and Montreal. In the end, it never materialized.
    Currently the Perdue Bay pipeline in Alaska is running at near shut down volume. It has been proposed that the oil pipeline be re-invented as a gas pipeline and build a LNG facility at Valdez to supply LNG to Asia.

    Nitrogen is commonly found where coal fields exist. China and Viet Nam have huge coal reserves and only one LNG project has been developed in eastern China. Namibia in Africa has huge coal reserves about 200 miles from the coast. A pipeline and LNG facility have been suggested, if a long term market can be secured. Australia has huge coal reserves in Western Australia.

    LNG is a little bit like Wind Power. There is a huge potential for development, but nobody wants to build a facility unless they have a supply contract from BC Hydro.

    BC needs a secure long term contract, before the government can move forward on proposals. Premier Clark has been in Asia twice in 2012, and no doubt LNG was part of the discussions that took place. We will have to wait and see.

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  5. Glen Allan Stein says:

    LNG proposals, and the potentials involved in it’s production in my opinion are….Move forward….British Columbia has to move forward on these proposals. But…..on the other side of this coin, B.C. also must follow guidelines set out by concerned First Nations groups, enviromentalists, and even everyday people that have a concern over this Supernatural provinces resourses. I am going to add in the controversy of the Enbridge pipeline proposal as well, as these two run pretty much hand in hand on employment opportunities, safety, and a large financial gain to B.C.
    I am a certified welder/fabricator, and licenced automotive technician, and the reason I say this is most people would consider me to not be a cautious enviromental individual, due to the fields of work I am in. Honestly, I am just the opposite. I very much respect our enviroment, and I am married as well to a First Nations lady.
    We all know as the proposals turn into production, half of the population is for it, the other half against..hence..Enbridge.
    Double hulled tankers in our waters off our coast. A single hull would be fine if the ships crew were alert at all moments, but that’s only in the perfect world. Now the pipeline itself. I’ve heard over and over the push Alberta has on us to run their Crude pipeline across our province, and the same rules should apply to the LNG proposals.
    Double hulled tankers already to go, so why not run pipelines with dual pipes. An inner pipeline to transport crude or LNG along and an outer pipeline surrounding the inner pipe to protect the inner pipe from the elements, which is in most cases the reason for failure in the first place, as well as to protect any spills out onto our pristine natural beauty of this province. If the internal pipeline ruptures or leaks, which should be monitered by a pressure drop, the LNG or crude simply spills over into the external pipeline, until such time as a crew is sent to deal with this issue. Another consideration…..has anyone thought to incorporate an earthquake measure into either pipeline. These pipelines should be built to withstand a fair amount of movement.
    The cost you say?……alot to run double pipes. Alberta can afford it now on their Enbridge proposal, and as well, the LNG industry can afford it as well at a later date. But…..if you want the vote on the move forward soon attitude without these considerations in mind, I guarantee the general public, and the First Nations will shut them both down in no time, or prevent them from starting up in the first place.
    These huge companies today remind me in a sense of the logging industry of years ago. The old school way of thinking was…Get in, clearcut the hell out of it, make millions or billions, change your grapple loader or Madill towers oil and just drain it on the ground in a landing, and who cares.
    This is what these pipelines face. They need new school ideas that look at those actions as primitive and disrespectful to the land, and it’s people.
    LNG will generate a domino of businesses, needing to expand, take on more employees in all sectors just as Fort MacMurray has. Enbridge will do the same.
    We are very fortunate as B.C.er’s, that we have the resourses we do, with more and more on the way every year, however, we mustn’t forget what it was about B.C. that’s kept us here, or attracted us here. We need to keep that standard up, and as far as I’m concerned, it should be mandatory regulations that all new pipelines being built at the moment should require an inner pipeline, housed by an outer pipeline. As we all assume that B.C. may encounter an earthquake in the very near future as well too.
    It is time to regulate pipelines further than the 1950′s way of being built. Times change, things change, technology allows these improvements to be incorporated. As well, these pipelines should be built on earthquake proof stands allowing movement of a certain degree in the event of an earthquake. Incorporate these tranformations into the proposals, and I’ll say these pipelines have a way better chance of moving forward with the enviromentalists, First Nations groups, and the general public. Me included.

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  6. Cliff says:

    Businesses should have started to hire/train the apprentice, journeyman, and professional workforce they will need if work is going to start now. Hundreds if not thousands of highly skilled BC tradesmen and other professionals are currently working in Alberta and other Provinces, as well as outside of Canada and would love to get jobs closer to home in BC. No one wants to work away from their families and homes in BC if jobs are available here, but I still don’t see many jobs advertised in BC, almost nothing for apprentice positions. There is a lot of talk about labour shortages, but few jobs are posted now.

    As for communities and government for that matter, they have in invest in and attract investors for affordable housing for the workforce required. Alberta and Saskatchewan have had great difficulty in keeping workers due to housing shortages.

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  7. F.Brian Fisher says:

    a couple of questions arise from your previous response.

    1. Recent reports say China has more than 10 times the LNG reserves of BC Why will Asian countries want to buy BC LNG at a high profit rate ?
    Thanks.
    Further to your previous reply. The protection of water is not an emotional issue at all. It’s a scientific issue. I am truly surprised to read you saying that Hydraulic fracturing can be accomplished without any water contamination. I understood that water was used to carry the chemicals to the shale rock. If, as you suggest , LNG can be recovered by fracking that does not use nor contaminate water in any form; we need to see the science. Are you saying that they don’t use water to get the chemicals et al to the shale rock. or Are you saying that when the fracking is done that water is recovered and cleaned ? In either case that will answer a lot of the concerns unless it’s just so much industry smoke and mirrors. Which please ??

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  8. Kerry Jothen says:

    Ensure that the workforce planning -- in terms of identifying the types of jobs and skills required for LNG development and in terms of the supply of local workers -- is closely tied to business planning.

    Make sure employers involved in the LNG develop are directly involved and are committed to providing job opportunities for local labour force participants and/or to preparing them to be ready to move into employment opportunities.

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  9. john says:

    Lets assess a pipeline from beginning to end. the construction, en route facilities and the terminal. then look at the product being conveyed. The reality is this -- a production/storage facility employing 150?, pipe being brought in from out of province along with the companies and equipment doing the install, perhaps a straddle plant or two, some compressor stations, and a terminal for the loading of tankers. At final turnkey, we may see as many as 400 or 500 people being employed on a full time basis. 400 people employed perhaps 4 or 5 years in the future… Does that justify the focus? The reality is this -- we have an example of itinerant trades when we look at the initial buildout of any pipeline, regardless of product carried. Secondary to that, consideration shold be given to the ancilliary aspects of accompanying facilities. Short term or long term? Long term would be straddle plants, compressor/pump stations, etc. There exists an example of needs with our neighbour to the east. Alberta has an itinerant trades workforce and we’ve heard and seen how many Newfoundlanders come and go, many of whom return to their native soil. Will that also become the scenario that the advent of LNG produces?? Long term employment for a few but short term for the many itinerants? Yeah, BC Jobs Plan!!! Go, go, go!!

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  10. Darren Gregory says:

    This is obviously the only direction of economic growth that our Government considers. Our eggs need to be in more baskets. That said: we are suffering from a TON of mistrust on this issue in BC and across Canada. It APPEARS as though our political machines, provincially and federally, are at the beckon call of the oil and gas industry: it appears as though our political machine has a one track mind on the subject. If BC is pursuing this direction, come “heck or high water”: then the people need trustworthy information from objective and reliable sources: to ease our inner angst. What we are hearing is this: oil/gas development and manufacturing is detrimental environmentally. Most of us agree with this point of view. However, we are bombarded with mixed-up, spun and misrepresented information on the issue from both Government and the Oil and Gas industry. We don’t know who to believe. Our Government has promised balance. Will our Government follow-through? So, the people in community and in business MUST educate themselves: aside from the propaganda machine of media. We MUST take considered time to ask ourselves these very questions. We must involve ourselves in the process. Government and Industry both: could do us all a HUGE favour: and represent the issue with clarity and with REGARD for OUR environmental concerns and point of view.

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  11. Moderator Bowen Moderator Bowen says:

    We have noticed that this discussion is getting fewer comments that others. Would you be able to share more if you had more information on liquefied natural gas?

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    • Lou says:

      I would like more info on the industry and what jobs/careers are usually related to this industry…i.e., for crude oil we know we have refineries, petrochemical plants, etc. Is BC planning on exporting the majority of its natural gas or will BC build the infrastructure to benefit BC residents first and then look at what to do with the “surplus” natural gas?

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      • Moderator Bowen Moderator Bowen says:

        Let me answer your questions in two parts. Firstly, within the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) industry, there are actually three tiers of anticipated employment. Because the industry is so new in BC, the “getting it ready to go” jobs -- which are the first tier -- are the ones that have a great deal of focus for the next ten years. Construction of multiple LNG projects is expected to create thousands of jobs over the next decade – this includes field preparation work, trade services, heavy-equipment operators and many engineering positions, to name just a few.

        The second tier will emerge as LNG starts to mature and facilities are built and come on line. Once in operation, each LNG facility will provide long-term jobs. LNG plants require highly skilled and technically qualified employees. The Canadian Energy Research Institute estimates that direct employment in our natural gas sector will grow to as many as 40,000 people by 2035. This is a significant increase from the 12,000 workers employed in the industry as of 2010. We’re looking at job creation in many fields of work. For instance, service sector opportunities will substantially increase in geophysical services, permitting and reclamation work, well servicing, maintenance contractors, and transportation are just a few of the areas where jobs will be created.

        The third tier are the indirect jobs created as the gas begins to move from well to facility to port. As an export industry, LNG will create marine and coastal business opportunities that will need port authority and safety operators, longshoremen, and crane operators.

        The second part of your question is a bit trickier to answer, as it depends, in part, on market forces and domestic vs international demand. Currently, over 80 percent of the natural gas produced in BC is exported to markets in Canada and the USA. However, the demand for Western Canada gas from these markets is decreasing as new natural gas supplies emerge across North America. Liquefying our natural gas and bringing it to new markets, like those in Asia, will increase the value of BC’s natural gas and strengthen the sector for the longer term. If BC’s natural gas industry follows the current market model, then likely 80 percent would continue to be exported.

        With the potential of over 1,000 trillion cubic feet of unconventional natural gas in BC there are vast opportunities to expand industry both through LNG for export as well those for domestic use.

        Does this info help you see how you can fit in to the emerging industry?

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        • john says:

          Let’s see, NG priced at $2.50 per mbtu? LnG priced at??? 600:1? The resource sector is bailing on NG due to the simple fact of cost vs profit. Will there be profit in LNG? Or will the gov’t adopt a more socialist view and subsidize LNG to make all the infrastructure cost effective for private enterprise? It might be cheaper to just focus on increasing EI or welfare..

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    • F.Brian Fisher says:

      LNG harvesting must be done without FRACKING -- There is no good fracking. Fracking destroys water resources. Put a 10 year moratorium on fracking and new technology will be developed. This in itself will create thousands of jobs. If we continue to allow fracking, the jobs created will be at a colossal and unrecoverable price. You may be getting less comments because most of the population know that LNG is not all good. Fracking is and Environmental Travesty. People may be reluctant to comment because they don’t want to be inundated with lies from the industry.

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      • Moderator Bowen Moderator Bowen says:

        Protecting BC’s water is an important and highly emotional subject. Indeed, you’ve likely identified one the challenges that may be facing input on this topic. The stakes feel pretty high, and the emotions on both sides can get out of hand. That’s part of the reason why your suggestion of developing new technologies to extract BC natural gas with less risk is so insightful.

        Your concerns about hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” echo those of many in BC. While it is important important to recognize these concerns, it’s also important to note that much has been done to reduce any potential risks that could come from current “fracking” in BC. BC’s waters are a vital resource, which is why BC has some of the most up-to-date regulations for shale gas development. This includes requiring a steel casing and cementing in wells to a depth of 600 metres -- to provide complete isolation of water from a natural gas well. BC is the first province in Canada to regulate the public disclosure of additives used for hydraulic fracturing. Not surprisingly, BC has never had a reported incident of water contamination resulting from hydraulic fracturing.

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  12. Felix Addison says:

    I am writing to draw your attention to a recent discovery in materials science in which carbon dioxide can be converted into solid matter in a process which releases significant amounts of heat energy. This method could be used to recapture the waste carbon dioxide from fossil fuel combustion and convert it into electricity.

    I strongly recommend that you investigate the possibility of incorporating this technology into the proposed natural gas plants as a method of mitigating their carbon output and enhancing their energy production potential.

    Information follows in links.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120521115656.htm

    http://www.mtu.edu/materials/department/faculty/hu/

    http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jp205499e

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  13. Paul Reniers says:

    The best way to seize new economic opportunities is with a well educated and highly trained workforce. Educational infrastructure is important, but well qualified and experienced educators are essential to educational quality. Promoting a skills strategy while withholding a fair wage increase at BCIT and other institutions is self-defeating.

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  14. George Hawirko says:

    Our Buildings use, or better “Wast” a majority of our precious dirty energy. Why are we not teaching our population how-to build using, higher quality sustainable methods that produce Net Zero Energy Buildings.

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  15. Tniet says:

    There seems to be a dissconnect between the governments Jobs plan and their support for this plan. The nice clip (see right sidebar) “Mila shares her advice on accessing new types of trades training” shows the need for good training (in this case at Camosun) to get people into the workforce. However, the government isn’t willing to properly fund wages and infrastructure at colleges and institutes such that they can attract qualified instructors and have effective classrooms and labs to make it happen. The job action at many public post secondary institutions in the last few months is evidence of this lack of funding. This is an issue for LNG, but it is also an issue for ALL job creation in the province.

    Fund education, make more tax revenue by graduating people able to find a well paying job, and create more jobs as qualified graduates drive the economy forward!

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  16. Kim Morton says:

    The biggest problem is going to be keeping the anti work crowd from derailing the process.

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  17. Joe Blown says:

    If there are not enough trained workers then the wages need to be higher to encourage more people to take up those jobs. Companies need to see this and help fund the training so they have adequate supply of trained workers. The government can provide help by subsidising training. That is how the government helps Canadians. By training them for work. In the end the government makes more tax money and spends less on social support. So training actually makes money for the government.

    The government does not help Canadians by allowing companies to import low paid workers so foreign owned companies can make larger profits..

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  18. Laura Cornish says:

    I’d much rather see BC invest in the jobs that we’ll need in the future. Let’s invest in green jobs and renewable energy.

    Let’s look at prosperity with a long-term lens. We have a lot to work with here. We have abundant renewable energy resources, a skilled workforce and strong engineering and knowledge sectors, and a small but growing clean tech sector. With the right policy moves, we can leverage these assets to begin to create a different economy—one that is less dependent upon the whims of the global commodities market.

    A new report shows if the $1.3 billion in federal government subsidies, now given to the oil and gas sector, were instead invested in renewable energy and energy efficiency, Canada would create more jobs: 18,000 more. http://bluegreencanada.ca/more-bang-for-our-buck

    Lets make that investment in BC.

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  19. Jens Wieting says:

    New reports by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the World Bank warn that current emissions trends will lead to 4 degrees or more warming this century. The International Energy Agency warned in 2011 that new fossil fuel infrastructure built over the next few years will lock the world into catastrophic global warming. The proposed LNG terminals would result in massive additional greenhouse gas emissions and significant economic risks because there is still hope that the international community will eventually act and seek to slow down climate change by pricing carbon pollution. Alternatives to fossil fuels exist: renewable energy and energy conservation create more jobs. If we care about our future we have to phase out fossil fuels as quickly as possible.

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  20. AJ Klein says:

    They can turn tail and run the other way like anyone sane would. Invest in energy that won’t hurt the habitat we *need to survive* (not actually optional), that won’t infringe on Indigenous rights, that won’t run out in a generation or two, and that won’t contribute to climate change.

    Do what makes sense.

    It’s not brain surgery.

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  21. Jolan Bailey says:

    Any credible discussion of LNG must address the environmental and social implications of unconventional gas development.

    For example, Shell plans to develop coal-bed methane in the Sacred Headwaters, the shared birthplace of 3 BC Wild Salmon rivers. The project would industrialize a pristine landscape sacred to many First Nations, and jeopardize the Skeena Salmon economy, worth approximately $110 million annually.

    Fracking in Northeast BC is sucking enormous quantities of fresh water, polluting groundwater, and fragmenting key wildlife habitat.

    I appreciate that BC needs a healthy economy, especially since the once-strong forestry sector is in decline. But let’s develop sustainable economies, not short-term boom-and-bust fossil fuel projects.

    That starts with protecting existing jobs in fishing and ecotourism by stopping projects like Shell’s plans for gas in the Sacred Headwaters. And then let’s invest in the clean energy economy our children deserve.

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  22. Jason Stanley says:

    I am a small business owner with 2 large Vans and a large pickup truck in my small fleet of work vehicles. Both vans run on Natural Gas, and I’ve noticed a considerable decrease in the amount of gas stations that have natural gas pumps available for consumers who use natural gas. Moreover, many gas stations who used to offer/have natural gas pumps have simply gotten rid of those pumps (and I can give you the names of specific gas stations that I used to gas up at, that no longer have natural gas pumps). Now there is literally only a handful of gas stations in the lower mainland that have natural gas pumps, so its becoming increasingly difficult to gas up my natural gas vehicles.

    I would also like to turn my third vehicle (a diesel pickup truck) into a natural gas vehicle (more environmentally friendly and cheaper to run), but due to the lack of gas stations that offer natural gas pumps, I’m extremely reluctant to buy any more natural gas vehicles; and I’m sure that I am not the only lower mainlander who feels this way.

    So one way for BC communities and businesses can get ready to seize the opportunities coming with liquefied natural gas (LNG) would be to somehow encourage gas station owners here in the lower mainland to start offering Natural Gas pumps at their gas stations because currently there are almost NO PLACES TO GAS UP WITH NATURAL GAS in the lower mainland.

    This is why there aren’t more people driving natural gas vehicles because its so difficult to find a gas station that has a natural gas pump -- its not a viable option for most people. Why would anyone buy a natural gas vehicle if there’s nowhere to fill it up? More people are becoming aware of the how much cheaper natural gas is, and how much better it is for the environment. I think if most gas stations had natural gas pumps, you would see a dramatic increase in the amount of consumers driving natural gas vehicles.

    I sincerely hope that someone (anyone) in the government might get the chance to read my suggestion.

    Thank you for your time!

    Sincerely

    Jason
    North Delta

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  23. Darren Chambers says:

    Priority should be given to BC residents for the new student spots in educational institutions for jobs in the BC energy sector. Tax cuts for the families that are supporting said students would encourage enrollment, as well as reduced tuition fees for BC residents.

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    • Moderator Kevin Moderator Kevin says:

      Hi Darren, two interesting points. I talked to my colleagues at the Ministry of Advanced Education, Innovation and Technology about priority given to BC residents for new student spots.

      I learned that by far the largest number of students in our post-secondary institutions are from British Columbia. However, labour market supply and demand forecasts indicate over 1 million new job openings over the next decade, and that one-third of those will need to be met through immigration and/or in-migration. This means our post-secondary institutions not only need to attract British Columbia students, but also students from across Canada and around the world.

      British Columbia and other Canadian students pay “domestic” tuition rates, which reflect only about one-third of the actual cost of their post-secondary education, while international students pay the full costs of their educational program.

      Hope this helps.

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  24. Manoj says:

    Liquified natural gas (LNG) can turn wonders for BC economy.
    Cross country pipelines are not a viable option for transportation of natural gas over longer distances specially when we need to transport it across the oceans. When Natural Gas is liquified its volume get reduced by 1/600 or in other words if we take 600 littres of NG then it gets converted to 1 littre of LNG. Now the small volume of LNG can be transported in large specially designed LNG carrier ships. There will be jobs in following categories:
    1. Engineering and construction jobs during plant erection period. It includes all sorts of trades people.
    2. Regular LNG plant jobs. It includes plant operators, power engineers, maintanance persons.
    3.Shipping jobs like marine engineers and port operations persons.
    4. Surveyors for custody transfer of LNG.

    I have worked for 6 yeras in LNG industry. I am eagerly waiting for the opportunity to come in BC in utilize my skills for development of this industry.

    I wish good luck to Premiere Clark for developing Natural Gas resources of BC.

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  25. Marysue says:

    No exporting of our resources and jobs. Let’s preserve what we have for our own use in the future. This is not a brainer.

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