According to an open letter posted on the Huu-ay-aht First Nation webpage, Steelhead LNG has stopped work on the Kwispaa LNG project.
The letter, dated February 15 and co-signed by Huu-ay-aht Elected Chief Councillor, Robert Dennis Sr., and Hereditary Chief, Derek Peters, said the Nation was “deeply disappointed” after Steelhead LNG’s notification that they had “ceased current project work on the Kwispaa LNG project.”
The news was confirmed by Chief Robert Dennis Sr.
In the letter, the Nation stated they would “evaluate the implications of this decision by Steelhead LNG” and “identify all go-forward options.”
No reasons were given for the halt of the project.
The Kwispaa LNG project is a partnership project by Steelhead LNG of Vancouver, and Huu-ay-aht First Nations on West Vancouver Island.
It involves a 730 hectare natural gas liquefaction and export facility on Sarita Bay, about 45 kilometres south-southwest of Port Alberni, fed by a 1000 km pipeline from near Chetwynd in the interior. The project has been estimated to cost $18 billion for export of 24 million tons of liquid natural gas per year at full build-out, requiring six to seven LNG carrier ships weekly.
Update: February 19, 2019
Nigel Kuzemko, CEO of Steelhead LNG, cited investor uncertainty as a major factor in the decision for a “time out” in the Kwispaa LNG project, according to reporting by My Campbell River Now. To “resolve the uncertainty,” Steelhead will now focus on attracting First Nations and governments to partner on the project.
In late 2017, Steelhead LNG similarly scrapped an LNG export project with Malahat First Nation near Mill Bay in the Saanich Inlet.