Further expansion unclear for LNG plant

Further expansion unclear for LNG plant

Proposed deal to supply product from Tilbury liquefied natural gas facility to Hawaii falls through

It's not clear what will become of any further expansion for FortisBC's Tilbury liquefied natural gas

plant following a proposed deal to supply product to Hawaii fell through. Late last month, a longterm

contract, which would have financed a second major expansion worth hundreds of millions of

dollars, was squashed after a regulatory body rejecting a proposed merger between Hawaiian

Electric Co. and Florida-based NextEra Energy. In May, a deal was announced with Hawaiian Electric

to deliver 800,000 metric tonnes from the Tilbury LNG facility for 20 years, starting in 2021. When

the deal was announced, B.C. Minister of Natural Gas Development Rich Coleman said the

agreement showcases the province's capacity to supply clean energy to new markets.

However, that deal was contingent on the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission approving the merger.

FortisBC is already undertaking a $400-million expansion at its Tilbury plant.

In operation since 1971, the plant cools natural gas into a liquid state for storage. It's then converted

back into gas vapour and delivered by pipeline during periods of high demand.

A FortisBC spokesperson at the time of the Hawaii deal noted the new contract would have meant

additional liquefaction equipment and a storage tank would be needed

at the Tilbury site, as well as a new 230 kV power line connecting Tilbury to B.C. Hydro's Arnott

substation in East Ladner. The expansion project would have commenced in 2018.

Asked about any future expansion at Tilbury, a FortisBC spokesperson

issued a statement only saying the site at Tilbury can accommodate additional storage and

liquefaction equipment, which is what makes it attractive to potential customers.

"Currently we are in discussion with a number of other potential customers who are interested in


If we bring on new LNG customers, our Tilbury operations will need to increase to meet the demand

and we'll be looking to expand our facility." FortisBC notes that "in addition to upgrading the facility

to fulfill a future expansion, we'll also need to build new electrical power lines so we can continue

powering Tilbury with clean electricity. We've started very early discussions with elected

representatives, city officials, local landowners and community groups about constructing a new 230

kV power line connecting Tilbury to BC Hydro's Arnott substation in Delta."

https://www.delta-optimist.com/news/further- expansion-unclear- for-lng- plant-1.2317075

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