Greenhouse Gas (GHG) reduction incentives extended to include trains and mine-haul trucks
The Government of British Columbia will support energy supplier FortisBC’s investment of up to CAD 400 million to expand its Tilbury liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility, by exempting expansion of the facility from a certificate of public convenience and necessity review by the BC Utilities Commission (BCUC) and increasing incentives pertaining to greenhouse gas emissions reduction. John Walker, president and CEO of FortisBC, explained these measures will help to increase FortisBC’s ability to rapidly and cost-effectively supply liquefied LNG as a cleaner alternative to diesel for the B.C. marketplace.
Bill Bennett, Minister of Energy, Mines and Minister responsible for Core Review, said: “Government wanted to get out of the way and allow the transportation fuel component of the LNG industry to develop quickly.”
“This $400-million investment in FortisBC’s Tilbury LNG facility will build B.C.’s market place for the world’s cleanest fuel, LNG, and create over 300 person years of employment in the Lower Mainland,” Bennett added.
Rich Coleman, Minister of Natural Gas Development: “British Columbia has a vast supply of natural gas to meet global demands and local markets. The FortisBC’s Tilbury LNG facility is a good example of how the diversification of our natural-gas sector is creating cleaner transportation options and economic advantages at home.”
Changes to the Government’s greenhouse gas reduction regulation will deliver incentives for natural gas uptake as a transportation fuel. Key benefits include:
- an increase to the allowed capital per station for building LNG or compressed natural gas (CNG) fuelling stations that will meet the needs of customers with larger fleets;
- an increase in the incentive funding for safety training and upgrades to LNG or CNG vehicle maintenance facilities; and
- the expansion of incentives to rail and mining vehicles.
Government is also directing the BCUC to set an LNG dispensing rate of $4.35/gigajoule.
The investment in the FortisBC Energy Inc. gas utility would be subject to FortisBC Board approval and additional regulatory and environmental permits and approvals, including the B.C. Oil and Gas Commission. The expansion is expected to include a second tank and a new liquefier, both to be in service by mid-2016. The expansion will add approximately one million gigajoules of LNG storage, as well as 30,000 to 60,000 gigajoules of liquefaction capacity per day.
The current Tilbury LNG Facility, located near the FortisBC transmission pipeline system just a few kilometres from metropolitan Vancouver, can liquefy 5,000 gigajoules of natural gas per day.
Converting fleets and vehicles to natural gas not only helps the province meet its greenhouse gas reduction goals but also helps improve air quality in the communities in which they serve:
- Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, the principal greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming, are reduced by 20 to 30 per cent.
- Natural gas vehicles emit virtually no particulate matter, the harmful microscopic component of air pollution that penetrates deeply into the lungs.
As a cleaner burning, lower carbon fuel than diesel or gasoline, natural gas for transportation helps achieve B.C.’s energy objectives defined under the Clean Energy Act while also delivering more stable fuel costs and reduced engine noise.
(Sources: BC Government, FortisBC)