Canaport LNG Ramping Up For First Ship

Canaport LNG is prepared to receive the first MOSS tanker at the jetty above in early 2009.

Canada's first LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) terminal is about to go into production in early 2009. Canaport LNG in Saint John is a partnership between Repsol and Irving Oil Limited on a $1-billion energy facility adding as many as 100 ship calls to port each year.

The terminal features three 160,000-cubic-metre storage tanks and a send-out capacity of 1.2-billion cubic feet of liquefied natural gas a day for markets in Canada and the northeastern United States.

Double-hull tankers will vary in size from 65,000 cubic metres and will berth at the terminal within the coming weeks. LNG will soon be pumped from ships to a jetty and transferred to the terminal through an insulated pipeline. Watch for the first MOSS tanker to arrive with spherical tanks that keep LNG at a temperature of -162.C.

Earlier this year, offshore construction was completed and this fall as many as 1,500 people were employed at the site-hundreds more than originally planned, and almost all of them were regional subcontractors. Onshore construction of a third storage tank was a major factor leading to the expanded workforce. In October of this year, approximately 85 per cent of the overall project was complete.

Among the contractors on site at Canaport LNG are SNC-SNAM, a partnership between SNC-Lavalin of Montreal and Snamprojetty of Milan, Italy, and Kiewit-Weeks-Sandwell Partnership, a consortium of Peter Kiewit Sons Co of St. John's, Newfoundland; Weeks Marine of Cranford, New Jersey; and Sandwell Engineering of Vancouver, as well as Lorneville Mechanical Contractors Ltd. of Saint John. Approximately 85% of the project's workforce has come from New Brunswick including many workers from the northern part of the province.

Throughout construction, Keiwit & Sons' Inc. contracted Logistec Stevedoring at the Port of Saint John for staging and loading of terminal materials and special cargos. The Port of Saint John's Pier 2 and floating dock were used for staging and loading of materials including outfitting of a 350-tonne crane barge. The port handled heavy lifts of trestles, and frame work for the jetty roadway and pipe rack.

When the natural gas is re-gasified at the terminal it will be distributed via the Brunswick Pipeline which extends from the terminal through southwest New Brunswick to an interconnection with the Maritimes and Northwest Pipeline at the Canada-U.S. border near St. Stephen. The investment in the pipeline is approximately $465-million.

"These energy hub facilities are attracting world-class companies and shipping lines to Saint John," said Captain Al Soppitt, President and CEO of the Saint John Port Authority. "The economic activity and port traffic generated by this project reveals to potential customers what our international marine gateway has to offer."

November 2008 Port Progress