Sarita Bay LNG Project, Vancouver Island, Canada

Sarita Bay liquefied natural gas (LNG) project is one of the biggest land-based LNG projects proposed for development in British Columbia (BC), Canada.

The facility, to be developed by Steelhead LNG
Corporation, an development company based in BC and the Huu-ay-aht First Nations (HFN).

The LNG project is expected to be developed with an investment of approximately $30bn, and will have a capacity of 24 million tonnes per annum (mtpa). Final investment decision (FID) on the project is expected to be made in 2018.

Location and site details

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The project will be located 10km north of Anacla at the southern end of the Alberni Inlet on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The site is situated 40km from Port Alberni. The processing facility will be developed on 300ha of First Nations Treaty Settlement Lands at Sarita Bay.

The site was chosen for reasons including its suitable waterfront access, minimal dredge requirement, access to workforce in Vancouver, short navigation route, and limited requirement of winterisation.

Sarita Bay LNG project details

"The project will include the construction of a pipeline that will deliver natural gas from northern BC, to Huu-ay-aht territory, as well as a land-based liquefaction facility in Sarita Bay"

The project will include the construction of a pipeline that will deliver natural gas from northern BC, to Huu-ay-aht territory, as well as a land-based liquefaction facility in Sarita Bay, and a processing facility at that will treat, liquefy, and store the natural gas. The LNG will then be loaded into carriers for export to customers, primarily in Asia.

Construction of the project is expected to begin in 2018 and be completed in four years, by 2022. The facility is expected to be operational until 2062 and is proposed to be decommissioned in 2063.

Employment benefits of the LNG project

The project is expected to generate between 3,000 and 4,000 jobs during the construction phase and between 300 and 400 jobs in the operational phase.

In addition, it is expected to generate spin-off jobs and business opportunities in a number of sectors including fabrication, transportation, security, equipment supply, and so on.

Sarita Bay LNG Project history and milestones

"The project is expected to generate between 3,000 and 4,000 jobs during the construction phase."

Steelhead LNG and the HFN reached an opportunity development agreement in June 2014 to explore developing the LNG project on HFN-owned land at Sarita Bay.

In July 2004, Steelhead LNG applied to the National Energy Board for a license to export up to 30 million tonnes of LNG a year for 25 years from the proposed LNG project. The project development will be split into four 6mtpa production trains initially, while options for an additional pipeline route to export a further 6mtpa are also being explored.

The preliminary assessment and screening studies were conducted by WorleyParsons, which did not find any environmental, regulatory, geotechnical, geological or natural hazard that would prevent the project to be developed at the Sarita Bay site. The preliminary assessment findings were also reviewed and verified by an independent agency called DNV GL.

The HFN People's Assembly voted in favour of leasing the land for the proposed LNG project at Sarita Bay in November 2014.

Contractors involved

WorleyParsons was awarded a contract to provide front-end engineering and design studies, geotechnical investigations, environmental impact assessments, and permitting approvals support for the Sarita Bay LNG project in January 2015.

WorleyParsons initiated environmental studies by employing its technical personnel based in Burnaby, Canada, and London, England, in February 2015. Hemmera, a Canadian environmental consultancy, will provide environmental and social sciences engineering solutions for the LNG project.

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