Andy Calitz, CEO of LNG Canada (Black Press files)

LNG Canada support far outweighs protests, CEO says

Andy Calitz vows completion on schedule at B.C. Natural Resource Forum

The narrow media focus on a pipeline protest camp in northwest B.C. obscures the larger picture of broad support and nearly $1 billion in economic benefits that have already flowed from Canada’s first large-scale liquefied natural gas project, LNG Canada’s CEO says.

Speaking to the annual B.C. Natural Resource Forum in Prince George, Andy Calitz vowed that the project will stick to its five-year construction schedule that began last fall.

“It is difficult for me to fathom how there could be such a strong show of support for one Indigenous group that opposes the Coastal GasLink pipeline, and by association, LNG, and so little attention to all of the support the project has from first nations communities, elected and hereditary chiefs – and the communities across B.C.’s North and in the Lower Mainland that want these projects to succeed,” Calitz said.

RELATED: Q&A with Premier John Horgan on LNG environmental impacts

RELATED: Prime Minister Trudeau lauds LNG benefits in displacing coal

By the end of 2018, LNG Canada had approved more than $530 million in contracts and subcontracts to area businesses across the province, including first nations businesses.

“The number jumps to $937 million when we add in amounts for contracts in businesses in other parts of the Canada,” Calitz said. “It is just the beginning. We still have years of construction ahead of us.”

He expressed frustration with the attention focused on a dissident group of Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs and their outside supporters, which included a wave of protests staged simultaneously across North America and extending to Europe.

Little mention is made of the Indigenous communities that support the export facility at Kitimat, the Haisla, Gitga’at, Gitxaala, Kitselas and Kitsumkalum First Nations, he said.

The list of communities who have signed agreements for the pipeline spans the province, including the Blueberry River, McLeod Lake, West Moberly and Doig First Nations in the northeast.

Along the pipeline route from the shale gas fields around Dawson Creek to Douglas Channel at Kitimat, impact and benefit agreements have also been signed with elected councils of the Cheslatta Carrier, Halfway River, Lheidli-T’enneh, Nadleh Whuten, Nak’azdli Whut’en, Nee Tahi Buhn, Saik’uz, Salteau, Skin Tyee, Stellat’en, Wet’suwet’en, Witset and Yeekooche First Nations.

“There is far too much at stake for LNG Canada not to defend our project,” Calitz said. “Not to stand up for first nations and the more than 15,000 members they represent; not to stand up for the northern communities, and municipal, provincial and federal governments that have stood up for our project in the past.”


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Prince George police arrest third suspect in targeted shooting

RCMP still searching for 38-year-old Eric Vern West, who is considered dangerous

Nisga’a leader named UNBC chancellor

Dr. Joseph Arthur Gosnell is the first Indigenous leader to assume the role

Quesnel Junior School Girl’s volleyball team competes in Kelowna

Despite a losing record the squad was never an easy out

MOTI will hold West Fraser Road open house May 1 in Quesnel

Ministry of Transportation staff will provide an update on the year-long road closure

Quesnel River Archers float away from provincials with huge medal haul

Local squad nabbed 11 medals at indoor championships in Victoria

VIDEO: ‘Alarm bells’ raised by footage allegedly from B.C. pig farm, SPCA says

PETA released video Wednesday showing dead and injured piglets next to nursing piglets

Haida youth travels to New York for UN forum on Indigenous issues

Aayaad Edenshaw presented her speech in Xaad Kil, Masset dialect of the Haida language

Female real estate agents warned of suspicious man in Metro Vancouver

The man requests to see homes alone with the female agent, police say

Can you put your phone down for Mother’s Day?

#DiningMode campaign encourages people to leave the phone alone while eating

Horgan heckled as gas prices sit at record high, could go up more

Premier John Horgan blames refiners, not taxes

SPCA investigating after newborn kittens found in Vancouver dumpster

The kittens were found suffering from hypothermia and dehydration

Judge rejects hunter’s bid to get back a sheep shot in northern B.C.

Despite expert testimony, judgement says ram probably underage

Tumble Ridge grandma wins millions in Lotto 6/49 draw

“I always say that if I win, I win, and if I don’t, I don’t.”

Ministry announces highway road work planned for this spring

Drivers should expect delays to last into the summer

Most Read