LNG Canada is Bad News

While the very sustainable expansion of the Kinder Morgan Trans-Mountain Pipeline was stalled by First Nations and (liberal) courts, another project, the LNG Canada plant and pipeline in northern British Columbia, is going ahead, and this is very bad news for Canadians.

The issue is not about exceeding carbon emission targets or associated environmental claims. We all rely on fossil fuels and opposing such projects over mere global warming concerns simply is unreasonable.

The LNG Canada project is simply organized looting of Canadian resources, with the inherent destruction it entails, financed by the taxpayers of British Columbia and Canada.

The first issue is that of royalties, with payments to the province of British Columbia and Canada being so low that the exploitation of these Canadian natural resources by foreign interests simply accounts to looting. As a matter of fact, while Norway’s Oljefondet (Oil Fund) has surpassed $1 trillion in assets, or nearly $200,000 per Norwegian citizen, British Columbia, or Canada, still do not enjoy any similar fund, and therefore, still do not have a mechanism in place to ensure the exploitation of natural resources actually benefit the country and its citizens.

Even worse, this looting is financed by the taxpayers of British Columbia. Electrical power needs for the LNG Canada projects are behind the Canadian-tax-payers-subsidized Site C Dam project in Northern British Columbia. In practical terms, the average British Columbia household will have to pay an extra $3,000 a year in residential hydro cost increases over the courses of only a few years, so Asian interests can exploit Canadian natural resources for free.

As with any looting, substantial destruction may also be expected. In this case, it involves the pollution, without any hope of remediation with current technology, of vast quantities of fresh water reserves in British Columbia. While this issue inherently associated with fracking could have been subjected to some mitigation requirements, the regulatory environment in British Columbia and Canada, or lack thereof, ensures natural resources company can get away with catastrophic environmental degradation with no actual consequences whatsoever. Latest incident in almost weekly occurrences being Kinder Morgan fined a mere $230 (two hundred Canadian dollars) for illegally using and polluting millions of liters of water. In contrast, a similar offense in Norway would have resulted in a fine for several hundred million dollars.

Despite the LNG Canada project being an economic, sovereign, and environmental disaster, First Nations approved it without any reservation (no pun intended), strongly suggesting that their typical virtue-signaling position that “Native” land is sacred and should be protected for future generations can be very quickly forgotten if a check is involved.

Christopher Bjørnsen

Tromsø, Norway