Feb 9 – March 11: Public input Woodfibre LNG amending EA certificate

As you might know, October last year Woodfibre LNG was required by the Squamish Nation to change its seawater cooling system to air cooling. Since Woodfibre LNG had received a Environmental Assessment Certificate that specifically included the seawater cooling system, the company is required to amend its certificate.

Since the changes to facility are significant and the air cooling system introduces other environmental impacts, like noise concerns, Woodfibre LNG is required by the Environmental Assessment Office to go through a amending process which includes a public comment period.

From February 9 to March 11 you can submit your comments to the Environmental Assessment Office.
You can submit your questions and comments here

Are you familiar with the BC environmental assessment process?
Than you should read this critical review.

Here are some questions about the amendment:

On November 4 2016, Woodfibre LNG announced that it will change its cooling system and go ahead with its project and after receiving a 37.5% reduced Hydro rate from the BC Government for its proposed LNG plant.

In general air cooling setups use more power than seawater cooling systems, but curiously the above reduced Hydro rate is not part of the amendment. This is surprising since the reduced Hydro rate would seriously lower the tax revenue from this project for the Provincial and Federal Government.

Question: -Why is the 37.5% reduced Hydro rate [eDrive LNG rate] not part of Woodfibre LNG’s amendment?

Question: -What will the power consumption [‘normal operating power requirement’] of the new proposed project configuration be?

Dr. Eoin Finn found another mistake in Woodfibre LNG’s original Environmental Assessment:

The BC Government adopted Woodfibre LNG’s estimated economical benefits of the project when it approved the project. However these estimates hinge on an economic multiplier of 28 to 1. Meaning that for every Woodfibre LNG job up to 28 indirect and induced jobs would be generated. All calculations for Federal and provincial tax revenues seem to be based on this estimate. (EAO-WFLNG-Assessment Report, August 19 2015)

But is this multiplier of 28 to 1 realistic?
The logging and mining industries in BC’s Coast Forest Region have a multiplier of 1.7 to 1, and the Paper & Pulp industry has one of 2.5 to 1. (Economic Dependencies for Forest Districts 2006, BCStats, February 2009).

These industry multipliers are both less than 10% of the 28 to 1 multiplier Woodfibre LNG used and the BC and Federal Governments simply adopted.

Remember that the BC Government promised 100,000 jobs and a one trillion LNG prosperity fund. We would like to know how much revenue of this project will flow into the LNG prosperity fund at all.

Here are some questions relating to this:

The input-output model for employment as estimated by Woodfibre LNG and adopted by the BC Government uses a multiplier of 28 indirect and induced jobs created for every Woodfibre LNG job. Compared to Logging, mining and pulp & paper the multiplier Woodfibre LNG used is more than 10 times higher than has been found to be the case for these industries.

Question: -Since the Provincial and Federal Taxes were calculated using this unrealistic multiplier, and since Woodfibre LNG has received a reduced ‘LNG eDrive’ Hydro rate to compensate for the higher energy need of its proposed air cooling system, why are the new Provincial and Federal tax revenue estimates not part of this amendment?

Question: -What are the realistic Provincial and Federal tax revenue estimates when using a realistic multiplier of 2.5 to 1 and the reduced ‘LNG eDrive’ Hydro rate?

The application for the amendment is short on detail and refers only to the specifics of the air cooling system. During the 2015 Environmental Assessment Woodfibre LNG stated that changing its cooling system would be huge. The amendment is unclear on changes made to the rest of the plant and infrastructure.

Question: -Why is there no visual representation of the hew configuration?
And of course you can still express your displeasure with this project too!

Please note, you can submit more than question or comment. You don’t have to do this on one session or letter. You can make multiple entries.

Comments can be submitted online:

By Mail:
Mr. Michael Shepard
Project Assessment Manager
Environmental Assessment Office

PO Box 9426 Stn Prov Govt
Victoria BC V8W 9V1

Or by Fax:
Fax: 250-387-0230

The Application for the Amendment Information, and how to submit your questions and comments are found in the documents below:

Download release

Woodfibre LNG’s Application for an Amendment to the Environmental Assessment Certificate:

Download Amendment

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