This study discusses key environmental and Indigenous Peoples issues facing development of the natural gas and LNG industry in BC, and examines the main approaches to mitigate, manage and monitor these issues effectively.
The study is based on the review of environmental assessment (EA) applications for 29 major natural gas and LNG projects in BC that have undergone a typical EA process with the provincial or federal responsible authorities since 2010, as well as the content analysis of primary regulatory documents and issues identified in relevant case law.
The key environmental issues identified from the review include significant residual adverse effects related to greenhouse gas emissions; significant residual adverse effects and cumulative effects to rare and threatened wildlife species; and cumulative adverse impacts of natural gas development. The most common potential adverse impacts on Indigenous Peoples interests summarized in the review include but are not limited to effects on health and socio-economic conditions; physical and cultural heritage; the current use of lands and resources for traditional purposes; sites of historical and archeological significance; and potential cumulative impacts on Aboriginal interests. The study also provides examples of key approaches to mitigate the foregoing issues and stresses the importance of effective consultation and engagement with Indigenous Groups at early stages of proposed projects development.
Canadian Crude Oil and Natural Gas Production and Supply Costs Outlook (2016-2036)
In a low cost environment for both oil and natural gas, the future of Canada’s conventional oil and gas development is being questioned. The last two years have seen significant declines in drilling and production as Canadian supply costs are high relative to the commodity prices.
CERI’s “Canadian Crude Oil and Natural Gas Production and Supply Costs Outlook (2016 – 2036)” breaks down drilling and production forecasts as well as supply costs across the various producing regions in Canada. Total natural gas production is expected to start to rise by 2019 as the price of gas increases and drilling rates overcome well decline rates. The rise in the gas production is totally dependent on whether LNG projects will be constructed. While oil prices are expected to rise as well, conventional crude production is expected to drop slightly and remain stable throughout the study period, as growth is concentrated in the oil sands. The Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin will see the vast majority of both natural gas production and conventional crude oil production, however, offshore Newfoundland will contribute approximately one-tenth of the crude oil over the study period.
The Canadian natural gas market has been heavily impacted by the shale boom out of the United States, leaving many in the industry to wonder what is ahead for producers. With current depressed natural gas prices, many drilling areas that were previously profitable are no longer economically attractive. Canadian drilling and production, particularly in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin, has dropped off significantly since 2012.
CERI’s “Canadian Natural Gas Market Review” shows that despite the current reduction in Canadian activity, the Canadian industry will see growth from its current levels due to the advances in horizontal drilling that enabled the shale boom, rebounding prices and growing demand for natural gas in both Canada and the United States. While the market for natural gas from Western Canada will remain impacted by the high levels of growth out of American shale plays, Canada will remain a net exporter of natural gas throughout the duration of the 20-year study period.