On June 8, 2013, British Columbia Premier Christy Clark announced the creation of a new Ministry of
Natural Gas Development. Rich Coleman, one of her most experienced
Ministers, was named as the first Minister of the new department.
The extraordinary step – of creating a new Ministry tasked
with delivering on the current preliminary plans for LNG Facilities
in British Columbia - is just the latest and perhaps the most
concrete example of the Government's consistent commitment to
promoting natural gas development in British Columbia, and to LNG
Since Premier Clark first took office, the Government has first
re-formulated its energy policy through the publication of the Natural Gas Strategy in
February 2012, accompanied by a specific LNG Strategy. That LNG Strategy was updated in
February 2013, and coincided with a Throne Speech that gave pride
of place to a vision of the future of LNG in British Columbia
generally. The Throne Speech specifically articulated a target of
having three major LNG Facilities operational by 2020, and also
proposed to establish a BC Prosperity Fund designed to reduce or
even eliminate BC's public debt, improve its social services
and/or make life more affordable for BC's families.
The size and scope of the Government's commitment to the LNG
industry was clarified through background reports by reputable
accounting firms, commissioned by the Province and also released in
February 2013. Each report analysed certain long-term economic
effects of developing up to five significant LNG Facilities in
British Columbia. One report indicated, among other things, that
Provincial revenues from the LNG sector over a 20 year period from
2018 to 2037, inclusive, could be in the range of $ 80 - $160
billion. The other report indicated that the aggregate capital
costs for LNG Facilities could be close to $100 billion for the
period from 2013 to 2021, inclusive.
Of course, these various estimates and/or assumptions could
ultimately prove to be optimistic, but there are a number of
credible syndicates currently proposing to develop major LNG
Facilities in British Columbia, involving world-class participants
such as Shell, Chevron/Apache, Petronas, and British Gas/Spectra.
As the Government pointed out in the Throne Speech, over $6 billion
has already been invested to acquire gas fields and/or related
facilities to produce LNG for export. The Throne Speech also
estimated that a further $1 billion had already been spent in
connection with background work for the development of the various
proposed LNG Facilities themselves.
Regardless of the credibility of the proponents or sponsors and
regardless of the amount of sunk costs incurred to date, these
various projects may not be completed on time or at all. But the
commitment, the stakes and the ambition involved here are
demonstrably huge. History may well judge the Premier's first
full term on her Government's success or failure in
facilitating delivery of some or all of these LNG Facilities. From
her actions in forming a special Ministry, and putting one of her
most experienced Ministers in charge, she appears to share that
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In Bank of Montreal v Bumper Development Corporation Ltd, 2016 ABQB 363, the Alberta Court of Queen's Bench enforced the "immediate replacement" provision in the Canadian Association of Petroleum Landmen 2007 Operating Procedure...
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