Frequently Asked Questions:
1. What is Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)?
LNG is natural gas that has been converted to liquid for ease of storage or transport. To convert the gas to liquid it is cooled to approximately -162° Celsius which condenses it to about 1/600th the volume of natural gas in the gaseous state.
At the customers location, LNG is warmed back to its gaseous state and distributed as natural gas that is commonly used to heat and cool our homes, generate electricity, or fuel natural gas vehicles and ships.
LNG is a clean burning fossil fuel used throughout the world to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by replacing less efficient, less clean fuels such as diesel. Compared to conventional diesel fuel, LNG cuts carbon emissions by about 25 per cent, SOx (Sulphur Oxides) by almost 100 per cent and NOx (Nitrogen Oxides) by 85 per cent, which translates into much cleaner exhaust emissions. LNG usage is a key step in a global shift to cleaner energy production. It is an important bridge in the transition from conventional fuels such as diesel and coal to renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar.
2. Is shipping LNG safe?
Yes. To date, since the first commercial LNG voyage in 1964, LNG carriers have safety loaded and sailed over 100 million miles globally without a major accident or incident that resulted in loss of cargo or human health impacts.
Like any fuel, LNG is an energy source that needs to be transported following strict safety standards. LNG ships are double-hulled for safety. Ships and marine facilities are equipped with sophisticated leak detection, emergency shut-down, security and other systems designed to ensure safe and secure transport of LNG.
3. How is this project related to the existing FortisBC Tilbury LNG Facility?
The WesPac Tilbury Marine Jetty Project is independent from the FortisBC Tilbury LNG Plant and WesPac and FortisBC are separate organizations. WesPac’s proposed Jetty will be a berthing site for carriers to receive LNG from the FortisBC Plant for transport. FortisBC has safely operated the FortisBC Tilbury LNG plant since 1971. Visit the FortisBC website to learn more about the FortisBC Tilbury LNG Plant.
4. What Studies are being done for the Project?
WesPac and their project team are completing numerous studies and technological reviews to analyze the existing conditions of the project site and surrounding area to inform the approval process and the technical planning for the facility.
The Project studies include, but are not limited to the following:
- Aboriginal Interests;
- Community Interests;
- Marine Geotechnical;
- Surface Water and Hydrology;
- Marine Flora and Fauna;
- Terrestrial Flora and Fauna;
- Heritage Resources;
- Air Quality;
- Contamination of Groundwater;
- Navigable Waters;
- Hazard Identification;
- Potential Accidents and Malfunctions(including effects of an LNG spill);
5. What safety measures will be in place?
WesPac is committed to building and operating a safe and secure Jetty. The Jetty design and operations will follow Canadian and International Standards for safety and security. Navigational safety, traffic, and emergency response will be part of the studies undertaken during the project approval process. To understand local conditions, WesPac is completing a Marine Transportation Study for the Project, working with First Nations, Fraser River stakeholders and government agencies to identify and minimize potential risks. This assessment will help define appropriate local safety measures to be used in conjunction with international safety requirements for development and operation of the Jetty.
The LNG marine shipping industry has an exemplary safety record. The International Group of Liquefied Natural Gas importers reported in 2011 that more than 135,000 LNG carrier voyages have taken place without major accidents or safety or security problems, either in port or at sea.
6. What is proposed to be built at the project site?
The proposed Jetty would consist of:
- A loading platform (dock or jetty).
- An access trestle and walkway to connect the platform to shore and support the LNG product lines, safety supplies and utilities.
- Individual breasting and mooring dolphins to secure a ship at the dock.
The Jetty will have minimal impacts on the river shoreline and riverbed features, crossing the shoreline only where piles will be located and where the access trestle connects with the shore.
7. How many ships will this project bring up the Fraser River?
The exact number of vessel calls at the jetty will depend on market conditions during operation. It is estimated that up to 90 LNG barge calls and up to 122 LNG carrier calls (of various sizes) could occur at the jetty per year. Initially the number would be much lower.
WesPac is working with First Nations, BC Coast Pilots, Fraser River Pilots, Fraser River stakeholders, and regulatory agencies to complete a Marine Transportation Study to identify and mitigate potential impacts of marine transport to and from the Jetty.
8. What is the size of ships that will be using the Jetty?
The bunkering ships that transport the LNG from the Jetty to local LNG-fueled ships are small – 2,000 m³ to 4,000 m³ in size – no larger than other barges that currently transit the Fraser River.
The Jetty can also accommodate LNG carrier ships – 40,000 m³ to 90,000 m³ in size. This is the same size range or smaller than the existing vessels currently operating on the Fraser River. The ships calling on our jetty will be much smaller than LNG carriers used in northern BC, which can be up to 265,000 m³ in size.
65,000 m3 LNG Portovenere
LOA: 216m, Beam: 32m, Draught: 9.5m
Proposed Jetty relative to FortisBC Tilbury LNG
Proposed New Construction Rendering
Comparison Ship Sizes