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Calgary energy firm eyes B.C. for LNG export site

A 12-storey LNG storage tank. A rolled steel and double-walled, perlite-insulated cryogenic tank that can keep 1.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas in compressed liquid form, chilled to -160 C at the Mt. Hayes Natural Gas Storage Facility in B.C.

CHAD HIPOLITO/The Globe and Mail

Quicksilver Resources Canada Inc. has filed an application to export liquefied natural gas from a site near Campbell River on Vancouver Island.

"The multibillion-dollar project will be designed to take delivery of gas primarily from the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin and liquefy it for export to Pacific Rim markets in Asia," Quicksilver said in its filing Monday with the National Energy Board.

So far, the NEB has approved 11 LNG export applications. Nine of those projects are proposed for British Columbia while two have Oregon terminals on the drawing board. Industry experts say it is realistic to expect four B.C. LNG projects at most to be constructed, but there are a flurry of proposals.

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Quicksilver's Discovery LNG plan is one of 15 B.C. projects envisaged by an array of proponents.

Calgary-based Quicksilver wants to build an LNG export terminal north of Campbell River on a site where Catalyst Paper Corp. formerly operated the Elk Falls pulp mill. Catalyst sold the industrial site to Quicksilver last year. The mill closed in 2010.

In its application for a 25-year export licence, Quicksilver said Discovery LNG would have production capacity of roughly 20 million tonnes annually of LNG.

Discovery LNG could start production as early as 2021, "subject to the completion of the feasibility study, consultations with aboriginal groups and local communities," said Quicksilver, which is a subsidiary of Quicksilver Resources Inc. of Fort Worth, Tex.

The Canadian firm's assets include natural gas reserves in the Horn River basin in northeastern British Columbia. "Given the applicant's large resource base, gas supply for the project will be primarily from the applicant's proprietary gas," according to the filing to the NEB.

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About the Author

Brent Jang is a business reporter in The Globe and Mail’s Vancouver bureau. He joined the Globe in 1995. His former positions include transportation reporter in Toronto, energy correspondent in Calgary and Western columnist for Report on Business. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Alberta, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of The Gateway student newspaper. Mr. More

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