Plans for storing and shipping LNG raised a huge public outcry on the Sunshine Coast in the ’90s, and that’s one of the reasons an LNG plant at the old Woodfibre pulp mill on Howe Sound is generating a lot of interest.
Fortis is looking for approval to expand a pipeline to serve the plant, but they’re not involved in Woodfibre LNG itself. The two projects are separate, but related, and subject to different approvals.
West Howe Sound SCRD Director Lee Turnbull says the public is getting confused, burned out and suspicious because of a lack of clarity around the players and the process.
Fortis’ Carol Greaves told the SCRD recently they never thought to hold an open house on the Sunshine Coast because the project involves only one small change in the area; a new, more efficient, compressor at the station in Port Mellon.
Greaves says they they’re willing to hold an information session on the Sunshine Coast, but Fortis can only deal with the pipeline, not larger questions around LNG storage and shipping.
The SCRD is now hoping Fortis and Woodfibre LNG will host a joint open house where people can get answers about both the pipeline expansion and the LNG export project.
Senior governments, meanwhile, have faced criticism from some residents for having a public comment period that ran over the Christmas break, making it hard for some to make their views known.