Canada First Nation Makes History with LNG Vote

Canada First Nation Makes History with LNG Vote
Sarita LNG would source natural gas from northeastern British Columbia and northwestern Alberta via existing and new pipelines.

Citizens of the 750-strong Huu-ay-aht First Nation in western British Columbia recently voted in favor of a proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) export project on Vancouver Island, according to a press statement Monday from the Huu-ay-aht.

"The people have spoken," Robert J. Dennis, Senior Chief Councillor of the Huu-ay-aht First Nations, said of the citizens' 70-percent approval of the group's co-management arrangement with Steelhead LNG to develop the proposed Sarita LNG facility on western Vancouver Island. "We can move forward and take the people's message to the world, showing them what world-leading means. The people's vote will give the project business certainty to take it to the next stage."

The Huu-ay-aht contend the vote is historic because it marks the first time a British Columbia Nation approved a co-management development arrangement for an LNG export facility. "Our co-management arrangement for this project is ground breaking and, by approving such a world-leading approach, Huu-ay-aht is continuing to be a leader among First Nations," said Dennis.

"This is a first in B.C. and Canada and creates a significant degree of certainty early in the project for not only Huu-ay-aht and Steelhead LNG, but also for government, investors and customers, added Nigel Kuzemko, CEO of Vancouver-based Steelhead LNG.

Currently in the preliminary engineering and conceptual design stage, the proposed liquefaction and export facility would be located on nation-owned land on Sarita Bay near the Vancouver Island community of Bamfield. Sarita LNG would source natural gas from northeastern British Columbia and northwestern Alberta via existing and new pipelines, according to Steelhead. Canada's National Energy Board has granted Steelhead LNG four licenses to export up to 24 million tonnes per annum of LNG for 25 years, the company stated.

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