Navius Research recently issued a report that suggests the development of a B.C. LNG industry will cause British Columbia to fall short of its greenhouse gas targets.
What the report failed to talk about is that natural gas exported from BC as liquefied natural gas (LNG) can play an important role in reducing global greenhouse gas emissions. While emissions may increase, if we are serious about addressing climate change, we have to look to the more important target — reduction in overall global emissions, which LNG from B.C. would help provide.
B.C. currently produces 0.02 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, while the markets targeted for LNG exports from B.C. account for more than 30 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. As these markets look to reduce their emissions – primarily by replacing coal-fired power with natural gas, B.C. can help. Countries including China and India are choosing natural gas to replace coal because it is an affordable and reliable source of energy that emits half the C02emissions and does not contribute further to air pollution.
For these reasons, global demand for natural gas is expected to increase 50 percent by 2040 according to the International Energy Agency. Natural gas from B.C. is poised to meet some of that demand through LNG exports. B.C. has some of the highest environmental standards in the world for natural gas production and liquefaction, including a stringent CO2-intensity benchmark for LNG facilities. If B.C. does not produce and export natural gas to global markets, it will not lead to less production and consumption of natural gas globally. Instead, demand for natural gas will be met by countries that do not have B.C.’s strong environmental standards and regulations.
Developing LNG in B.C. has benefits globally as well as significant benefits for British Columbians. If even just one large LNG project is built in B.C., it would invest billions of dollars into the economy, creating thousands of new jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue on an annual basis when in operations. In turn, this revenue will fund services we rely on, including hospitals and health care, transportation infrastructure and social services.