B.C. Liquefied Natural Gas: Frequently Asked Questions

British Columbia liquefied natural gas frequently asked questions

Fracking, the natural gas industry and proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) plants provide enormous opportunities for Canadian and Indigenous families across British Columbia.

But many questions remain about these projects, such as what fracking is and what environmental regulations are in place to protect the environment as Indigenous-led LNG projects approach construction. Also see:

What is fracking?

Hydraulic fracturing, also known as "fracking," is a method employed to generate channels in subsurface rock formations to facilitate natural gas extraction.

Fracking in B.C. occurs at greater depths than in other regions worldwide, occasionally reaching distances over four kilometres, below impermeable rock layers [1].

What is LNG?

LNG is natural gas that has undergone a cooling process to become a liquid, typically at temperatures around -162° Celsius, allowing for efficient transportation and storage. When in its liquid state, the volume of natural gas reduces to about 600 times smaller than its gaseous form.

The development of liquefaction, dating back to the 19th century, enables the transportation of natural gas to places unreachable by pipelines [2].

BC Minister supports Canadian-made LNG projects

Why does B.C. need to continue fracking for gas?

Indigenous-led projects like Cedar LNG and Ksi Lisims LNG must source natural gas from somewhere in order to liquefy and subsequently ship overseas. These export facilities are projected to produce some of the least-carbon-intensive LNG anywhere in the world and significantly lower net global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by displacing coal-fired power and heat generation plants in Asia.

Therefore, if low-emission Canadian LNG isn't used by consumers worldwide, other producers that are likely to have less protections for human rights and the environment will fill the void.

Global natural gas demand is expected to grow for decades, as the cleanest-burning fossil fuel is seen as playing a significant role while the global economy slowly transitions to renewable energy. Additionally, natural gas for power generation may still be required as a backup for wind and solar power, as storage technology for these energies is currently limited [3].

The wind doesn't always blow, and the sun doesn't always shine; therefore, natural gas is seen as a solution to the intermittency of renewables.

What are the benefits of LNG for Canadians & Indigenous communities?

LNG is a once-in-a-generation opportunity for remote Indigenous communities looking to attain own-source revenues and independence from Canadian government welfare. Projects like Coastal GasLink, Cedar LNG, and Ksi Lisims LNG have and will play a significant role in ushering in economic reconciliation with First Nations throughout the province, providing these communities with new funding for schools, healthcare, infrastructure and social programs.

The economic benefits of a healthy LNG sector in B.C. cannot be ignored.

• Between 2020 and 2064, total annual investment by the LNG sector would average over $11 billion, totalling more than $500 billion over the entire period [4]

• For Canada, a healthy LNG sector in B.C. would mean 96,550 more jobs annually and over $6 billion more in wages [4].

• British Columbia would have more than 71,000 more jobs annually and over $4.6 billion in wages [4].

• From 2020 to 2064, over $108 billion in provincial revenue could be generated for the provinces. Of this total, nearly $94 billion would go to British Columbia [4]

• Canada's federal government could expect to see $64 billion in total additional revenue from 2020 to 2064 [4].

• Coastal GasLink has spent more than $1.7 billion on contracts with Indigenous and local communities to date [12].

• LNG Canada has spent a cumulative $3.6 billion on contracts to local, Indigenous and other businesses as of early 2022, including $2.9 billion to Indigenous-owned and local companies [13].

Denying these benefits to Canadian and Indigenous families, many of whom are in remote locations across B.C. with very few economic opportunities, would be a poor decision that would only benefit less responsible foreign producers.

Canadian LNG can help reduce net global emissions, says First Nations in British Columbia

Why is natural gas good for climate action?

When used as a substitute for coal, natural gas has proven time and time again to reduce global emissions effectively. A few examples include:

• The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) says that coal-to-gas switching has resulted in a power-sector CO2 emissions decline of more than 30% from 2005 to 2019, despite the economy growing 28% [5]

• The International Energy Agency (IEA) said in 2019 that since 2010, coal-to-gas switching had prevented 500 million tonnes of CO2 from entering the atmosphere – an effect equivalent to putting an extra 200 million E.V.s running on zero-carbon electricity on the road over the same period [6].

Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the IEA, says that when used effectively, natural gas improves environmental outcomes.

"Natural gas is one of the mainstays of global energy. Where it replaces more polluting fuels, it improves air quality and limits emissions of carbon dioxide [6]."

Coal plants are being constructed at alarming rates across China, India and other parts of the world [7]. In developing economies, sustainable Canadian LNG can help reduce environmental impacts associated with power and heat generation via coal-to-gas switching.

How would shutting down B.C.'s natural gas sector affect the province?

Shutting down B.C.'s responsible natural gas industry would have particularly devastating effects on remote communities across the province. Such a decision would prevent First Nations communities like the Haisla and Nisga'a from achieving economic reconciliation and enriching their communities over the next several decades. Canadian families, businesses and governments who stand to benefit from these export facilities would also see significantly fewer jobs and revenues.

Every year the natural gas sector generates billions of dollars in revenues for the B.C. government. If shutdown, the province would miss out on a significant revenue stream equivalent to the approximate cost of the new St. Paul's Hospital in Vancouver every year [8].

But the natural gas sector contributes far more to the lives of British Columbians than just government revenues.

In 2017, for example, B.C.'s oil and natural gas industry generated about $18 billion in goods and services and added $9.5 billion to the province's economy (GDP). Furthermore, the sector supported nearly 26,500 direct jobs and over 36,100 indirect jobs – or from another lens, it paid $3.1 billion in wages to B.C. workers that year [9].

Shutting down B.C.'s world-class natural gas sector would have far-reaching consequences felt by Canadians and First Nations in every corner of the province.

BC premier david eby supports LNG projects

What role does natural gas play in B.C.'s energy mix?

Despite producing nearly all its electricity from renewables, B.C. still relies on natural gas for nearly a third of its end-use energy demand [10].

Natural gas plays a critical role in buildings across the province, supplying more than 50% of B.C. homes with heat as of 2021, which jumps to two-thirds when looking at detached homes [11]. The fossil fuel is also heavily used by B.C. industries, with more than 60% of production consumed by industry every year [12].

In other words, natural gas plays a critical role in providing British Columbians with the energy they need. Without it, homeowners, businesses, and industry alike would suffer because there are currently no alternatives.


The natural gas sector plays a significant role in the lives of families across B.C. while also providing substantial revenues for Indigenous and non–Indigenous governments. And, with new LNG export facilities to come, these benefits stand only to grow significantly in the decades ahead.

Please help us support a healthy B.C. LNG sector by signing up today:

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1. BC Energy Regulator. (Year Published). Title of webpage. BC Energy Regulator. https://www.bc-er.ca/news-publications/trending-topics/hydraulic-fracturing. Date Accessed: July 2023.

2. U.S Energy Information Administration. (No Date). Liquefied Natural Gas Explained. https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/natural-gas/liquefied-natural-gas.php. Date Accessed: July 2023.

3. International Energy Agency. (No Date). Natural Gas. https://www.iea.org/energy-system/fossil-fuels/natural-gas. Date Accessed: July 2023

4. The Conference Board of Canada. (Year Published). Title of webpage. https://www.conferenceboard.ca/in-fact/abstract-aspx/?did=10764. Date Accessed: July 2023.

5. American Petroleum Institute. (2021, July 12). Eight Points: Natural Gas - Reducing Emissions and Environment. https://www.api.org/news-policy-and-issues/blog/2021/07/12/eight-points-natural-gas-reducing-emissions-and-environment. Date Accessed: July 2023.

6. International Energy Agency. (2021). The Role of Gas in Today's Energy Transitions. https://www.iea.org/reports/the-role-of-gas-in-todays-energy-transitions. Date Accessed: July 2023.

7. National Public Radio. (2023, March 2). Title of webpage. https://www.npr.org/2023/03/02/1160441919/china-is-building-six-times-more-new-coal-plants-than-other-countries-report-fin. Date Accessed: July 2023.

8. Government of British Columbia. (2021, Date of Publication). Title of Press Release. https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2021HLTH0018-000412. Date Accessed: July 2023.

9. Made The Canadian Way. (Year Published). Title of webpage. https://madethecanadianway.ca/oil-gas-critical-bc-economy/. Date Accessed: July 2023.

10. Canada Energy Regulator. (Year Published). Title of webpage. https://www.cer-rec.gc.ca/en/data-analysis/energy-markets/provincial-territorial-energy-profiles/provincial-territorial-energy-profiles-british-columbia.html. Date Accessed: July 2023.

11. BC Hydro. (2021). Heating Practices Adding to Climate Change. https://www.bchydro.com/news/press_centre/news_releases/2021/heating-practices-adding-to-climate-change.html. Date Accessed: July 2023.

12. Coastal GasLink. (Year Published). Indigenous Relations. https://www.coastalgaslink.com/sustainability/indigenous-relations/. Date Accessed: July 2023

13. LNG Canada. (2022). Project Overview Update. https://www.lngcanada.ca/uploads/subpages/downloads/323592-03-LNG-Project-Overview-Update-2022-V9-LoRes-Pages-2.pdf. Date Accessed: July 2023.

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