A Quebec liquefied natural gas project that was announced in March, 2014 has now been approved by the Quebec government. Stolt LNGaz (SLNGaz) said that it would invest $570 million in the project, which aims to bring LNG to industries in Quebec that are not served by the existing natural gas pipeline. A plant will be built at Bécancour, Quebec, with the capacity to produce 500,000 tons of LNG per year, equivalent to 1.4 billion cubic metres of gas, according to the company.
That LNG will be transported by “small” LNG ships and trucks directly to customers. Once at its destination, the LNG will be re-gasified on site and made available for customer use by SLNGaz. This integrated approach is one that was pioneered in Norway and used “for many years” throughout Scandinavia.
Shipment of the LNG produced at Bécancour is scheduled to begin in 2018. Partnership agreements for shipping have been signed between SLNGaz and Quebec companies Petro-Nav and Servitank. The former is a subsidiary of Groupe Desgagnés, which specializes in maritime transport of bulk liquids. Petro-Nav will become co-owners and operators of the tanker ships that will carry the LNG. They will have a capacity of from 15,000 to 40,000 cubic metres. The shipping work is expected to result in the creation of about 100 new jobs.
Servitank is a leading Quebec provider of warehousing and delivery of hazardous materials and will provide transport by road tankers from SLNGaz’s regional terminals to its clients’ facilities.
Construction of the plant will generate approximately 250 jobs locally, the company said, as well as fifty additional jobs upon completion. There will also be “numerous” indirect jobs created. The site at Bécancour was selected because of its accessibility to natural gas, hydro-electricity, and deep water port facilities with year-round access to the St Lawrence Seaway.
The CEO of SLNGaz predicted that the Bécancour project would make Quebec a global model for the production and distribution of LNG on a regional scale. It will enable businesses not served by the traditional natural gas grid to be more competitive and cost-effective, while significantly improving their environmental performance, the statement said.