As the world marks the first anniversary of Russia’s expanded attack on Ukraine, BC Liberal leader Kevin Falcon says British Columbia has an “obligation” to help fill Europe’s energy needs with liquefied natural gas.
“Right now in Europe, you are witnessing first-hand the challenges Europeans are facing as they desperately seek alternative forms of energy, so that they don’t have to rely on a corrupt, autocratic dictatorship like Vladimir Putin’s Russia and other jurisdiction like Saudi Arabia ” he said. “(Here) we are in British Columbia and Canada,where we have ethically, environmental-sensitively produced LNG that can help jurisdictions like Europe around the world.”
Falcon made these comments when asked whether the provincial government should approve three LNG projects — Cedar LNG, Tilbury LNG and the second phase of LNG Canada — still undergoing review.
Falcon believes that government should approve these projects.
“It’s important to recognize that we are global citizens,” he said. “We have an obligation to do our bit to help the world transition from dirty power like coal-fired power in India and in China and to a lesser degree in Japan onto LNG, which would reduce emissions from those jurisdictions by up to 50 per cent. That would be a tremendous contribution we could make to a future that is transitioning to a greener future.”
Falcon acknowledged that increasing LNG production in B.C. would raise greenhouse emissions in this province but added that the government is wrong when it links approval of LNG projects to its climate change goals.
“We can shut down the entire province…and it would represent a couple of days worth of emissions in all out of Asia,” he said. “So we have to be smart about this.”
B.C.’s role is to help other jurisdictions also reduce their emissions, he said.
BC Liberals had raised questions about delayed LNG projects during Question Period Tuesday (Feb. 21), often linking them to the question of reconciliation, as some First Nations stand to benefit from those projects.
Premier David Eby had responded by saying that projects have to hit provincial goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
“LNG is — let’s be frank — a fossil fuel that contributes in part to global climate change.”
Eby also tried to defuse the argument that government is not serious about reconciliation by standing in the way of LNG projects.
“These are not simple, black-and-white issues,” Eby said.
“These are complex issues. We’ll work closely with nations on economic development. We’ll work closely with fossil fuel producers around LNG, to ensure that we’re hitting our carbon targets, but all of us in this House need to be focused, as well, on the fact that the world is transitioning rapidly away from fossil fuels…”