NSP not interested in importing LNG1/3/2013
Nova Scotia Power has looked into using imported liquefied natural gas but says it is not an economical fuel choice right now.
The power company recently told the provincial regulator that it does have an option to acquire LNG imports but isn’t using it.
“Ultimately, price is the determining factor for access to LNG,” the utility said in a natural gas report filed with the provincial Utility and Review Board.
“If Nova Scotia Power is willing to pay a sufficiently high price, LNG is available.”
The report, which is redacted, doesn’t name the would-be supplier.
Nova Scotia Power, which uses natural gas at its Tufts Cove plant in Dartmouth, also told the provincial regulator that LNG supply is constrained because the Canaport LNG terminal in Saint John, N.B., isn’t importing much of it.
“Until the price of gas rises in the Maritimes or falls in Europe and Asia, it does not make economic sense to import LNG to North America,” the utility said in the filing.
Canaport LNG is co-owned by Spanish energy firm Repsol, which holds a 75 per cent interest, and Irving Oil, which has a 25 per cent stake.
The facility was put up for sale last year, with Indian gas giant GAIL reportedly being among the potential buyers. There is speculation that Canaport would be converted to an export facility because of higher overseas demand.
Nova Scotia Power said another barrier to getting liquefied natural gas from Canaport is the fact that a lateral would have to be built between the Brunswick Pipeline and Maritimes and Northeast Pipeline systems.
“Building and paying for an interconnect is not a reasonable option,” the report said.
Canaport uses Brunswick, owned by Nova Scotia Power’s parent, Emera Inc., to ship gas to the United States, where shipment continues on the American segment of Maritimes and Northeast.
The power company said it has talked to Repsol and Maritimes and Northeast, in which Emera has a 13 per cent stake, about the possibility of natural gas storage, but neither company was interested.
“If the Canaport terminal is sold, Nova Scotia Power will approach the new owner to determine whether (it) can offer any services worth pursuing,” the filing said.
An LNG export facility proposed for Guysborough County could also have an impact on the market and not necessarily a positive one, the utility said in a separate filing.
“Whether this is a positive (encourages exploration for gas in the region) or negative (price of gas in the region goes to international LNG pricing) will be determined,” the related report said.
“All consumers of gas in the region should be engaged if the project goes forward.”
Pieridae Energy Canada announced plans in October to develop a $5-billion LNG plant and terminal in Goldboro.
(The Chronicle Herald)