Spanish company drops LNG terminal in New Brunswick citing high costs to ship gas

FREDERICTON — The Spanish company behind a proposal to export liquefied natural gas to Europe through a terminal in Saint John, N.B., says it will not go ahead with the project because the costs are too high.

New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs says he is disappointed by Repsol's decision to drop the project but not completely surprised because he was aware of issues surrounding costs.

The owner of the Saint John plant had meetings with the federal government in June on turning it into an export facility to help Europe wean itself off Russian oil and gas after the invasion of Ukraine.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said last year his country was open to accepting more gas from Canada but also warned that the distance from the gas fields made for a poor business case.

Higgs says Repsol made it clear that the economics of transporting the gas by pipeline from Western Canada before shipping it to Europe "were just completely out of the question."

Michael Blackier, spokesman for Repsol's Saint John plant, says the decision to scrap the liquefaction project was made following a feasibility study that found the overall costs to ship the gas to their terminal were too high.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 17, 2023.

The Canadian Press