BC’s Liberal government is spreading the news about Liquified Natural Gas near and far. It wants to encourage trades people ad workers to head to the northern oilpatch, and it wants businesses all over BC to register for potential business.
Last Thursday night, Fraser-Nicola MLA Jackie Tegart introduced Peace River South MLA Mike Bernier to a small gathering in Ashcroft.
Bernier, a former mayor of Dawson Creek, began by describing work and potential in the northeast oilpatch, which provides millions of dollars in royalties to the provincial government every year.
Three hundred million years ago, he said, Dawson Creek, Tumbler Ridge and Fort St. John was all beach front property. Now we have gas molecules trapped in the shale 3 km below the surface.
Seventeen per cent of the natural gas produced in BC is used in Canada, he said. The rest is sold to the US. However, the US market is not guaranteed as that country wants to be self-sufficient by producing their own energy.
“We need to look for new markets,” said Bernier. “Without finding another market, we have an industry that is going to go dormant.”
The gas can’t be shipped off the continent in its present state, but natural gas can be condensed approximately 600 times by liquefying it.
There are other potential markets, but not enough people in the north to get the LNG plants up and running. The province needs workers, and local businesses need to be involved.
“It’s all about relationships,” he said. “That’s what LNG-Buy BC is about – it’s helping people connect.”
Businesses can register at http://engage.gov.bc.ca/lnginbc/lng-buy-bc-program/
“So do what businesses do,” said Bernier. “Be entrepreneurial and get out and make connections.”