B.C. workforce ready to take advantage of 10,000 LNG jobs, says trades council


Author: Megan Thomas

Original Article

Of the $40B investment by LNG Canada, officials say $24B will be spent in B.C.

B.C.’s trades sector is confident most of the thousands of workers required to build and operate the province’s first major LNG export facility will come from within the province.

LNG Canada’s $40-billion investment in a liquefied natural gas export terminal in Kitimat, B.C, and a  670-kilometre pipeline from Dawson Creek, is expected to generate roughly 10,000 jobs by 2021.

The joint-venture has agreed to place priority on local and B.C. hiring and has conditionally awarded a $620-million contract to work with Indigenous businesses in northern B.C. for the pipeline.

But some critics have questioned whether B.C. has the skilled labour supply needed to take full advantage of the touted economic benefits, which the government has said are a worthy tradeoff for the increase in carbon emissions the plant will bring.

Tom Sigurdson, executive director of the B.C. Building Trades Council, says the province’s workforce is ready.

“We may have to turn to other western provinces to get some of the trades, but for the most part I’m pretty confident that we’ll be able to supply the vast majority of the skilled labour force out of British Columbia,” Sigurdson said.

Some temporary foreign workers with specific expertise in LNG may be required when the plant goes into operation and about 950 more jobs come into effect, he added.

“I see that for the short term as being very temporary and in supervisory roles. We should be able to scale up a workforce sufficient enough that they will be able to do the plant operations.”

Years of preparation

One reason B.C. is prepared is because planning for the construction boom that was expected to come with LNG started years ago when hopes were high in the province, said Sigurdson, who sat on a provincial LNG working group back in 2013.

At that time, it was hoped two major LNG facilities would be under construction at the same time, and there were fears B.C.’s labour force would fall short and large amounts of temporary foreign workers may be needed.

“We had a very real concern about skilled labour supply,” he said.

It took years longer than expected for B.C. to see a major LNG investment, but in that time labour market conditions have changed, in part due to downturns in Alberta’s oil patch and in Saskatchewan’s uranium industry, Sigurdson said.

Over the years, various trades organizations have also upgraded skills and training programs with the hope work in the LNG sector would one day be available, he added.

Modules produced overseas

Of the $40 billion investment by LNG Canada, provincial officials say $24 billion will be spent in the province and the remaining billions will be spent overseas.

Some of that overseas spending is expected to go toward the fabrication of the modules for the Kitimat facility in South Korea because B.C. does not have a suitable fabrication facility.

“We’d much rather see it here,” Sigurdson said. “The fact of the matter is we live in a global economy.”

Ellis Ross, the LNG critic for the B.C. Liberals and the MLA for Skeena, said he also believes there was no way around having some of the manufacturing done overseas.

“There is no place in Canada, let alone B.C., that can actually build these same modules,” Ross said.

Spin-off benefits

Outside of the direct construction jobs created by the project, B.C. service and supply companies can expect to benefit, said Dan Baxter, director of policy development with the B.C. Chamber of Commerce.

“There is truly an opportunity here for the entire province,” Baxter said.

The project is also large enough that some people may shift to fields that are in demand as they enter and move through post-secondary education programs, said Baldev Pooni, dean of trades at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops.

Everything from pipe fitters and welders to heavy equipment operators will be in demand in Kitimat, Pooni said.

“It’s a huge impact on a whole variety of trades.”

LNG Canada has also committed to a 25 per cent target for apprenticeships, provincial officials said.

LNG Canada Announces a Positive Final Investment Decision

First large-scale LNG export facility in Canada receives a green light

VANCOUVER, October 1, 2018 – LNG Canada today announced that its joint venture participants – Shell, PETRONAS, PetroChina, Mitsubishi Corporation and KOGAS – have taken a Final Investment Decision (FID) to build the LNG Canada export facility in Kitimat, British Columbia, in the traditional territory of the Haisla Nation.

“The Final Investment Decision taken by our joint venture participants shows that British Columbia and Canada, working with First Nations and local communities, can deliver competitive energy projects,” said Andy Calitz, CEO of LNG Canada. “This decision showcases how industrial development can co-exist with environmental stewardship and Indigenous interests.”

The Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada said, “Today’s announcement by LNG Canada represents the single largest private sector investment project in Canadian history. It is a vote of confidence in a country that recognizes the need to develop our energy in a way that takes the environment into account, and that works in meaningful partnership with Indigenous communities.”

Each joint venture participant will be responsible to provide its own natural gas supply and will individually offtake and market its share of LNG. The FID is for two processing units or “trains,” with first LNG expected before the middle of the next decade.

“The project LNG Canada is bringing to northern B.C. symbolizes the kind of balanced and sustainable path forward British Columbians are looking for,” said B.C. Premier John Horgan. “We welcome the unprecedented commitment shown by the LNG Canada partners to work within our province’s ambitious climate goals. The critical importance of this project is what it represents – the intersecting of economic development, jobs for local workers, partnerships with Indigenous communities and forward-looking climate leadership. We’re delighted the global business community sees British Columbia as a natural home for this kind of investment.” LNG Canada has worked towards FID since it first identified Kitimat from a list of 500 potential sites in British Columbia as the ideal location for an LNG export facility.

LNG Canada’s export plant has been designed to achieve the lowest carbon intensity of any largescale LNG plant operating in the world today. LNG Canada achieved this through a combination of using renewable hydropower from BC Hydro and highly-efficient gas turbine engines. With demand for LNG expected to double by 2035 compared with today as a result of global commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality, LNG Canada will provide natural gas to countries where imported gas could displace more carbon intensive energy sources and help to address global climate change and air pollution.

“We look forward to helping Canada take its place on the global map of LNG exporting countries and want to recognize the important role played by all levels of government, First Nations and the many people that supported LNG Canada to help us get to an FID,” said Calitz. “We also thank our joint venture participants for their trust in our ability to deliver a cost-competitive and reliable source of LNG for their global portfolios.”

LNG Canada is advantaged by access to abundant, low-cost natural gas from British Columbia’s vast reserves and the relatively short shipping distance to North Asia, which is about 50% shorter than from the US Gulf of Mexico and avoids the Panama Canal. The LNG Plant will be constructed on a large, partially-developed industrial site with existing deep-water port, roads, rail and power supplies.

Comments from Joint Venture Participants

“LNG Canada is an attractive investment opportunity in a strong joint venture, with companies that have deep LNG industry experience,” said Maarten Wetselaar, Integrated Gas and New Energies Director, Royal Dutch Shell. “In the last two years, LNG Canada has improved its competitiveness, reduced execution uncertainty and gained significant stakeholder support. Together with our joint venture participants and contractors, we look forward to working with the local community, First Nations, government and the LNG Canada team to build and operate this game changing project for Canada’s energy industry.”

“The final investment decision with our joint venture participants is a significant milestone for PETRONAS and for the energy industry in Canada. The decision is a testimony of the strong collaboration among our partners and stakeholders who share the same aspiration of delivering long-term value via LNG, in line with our commitment to sustainable and responsible development of resources,” said PETRONAS President and Group CEO Tan Sri Wan Zulkiflee Wan Ariffin.

PetroChina Company Limited (PetroChina)

“PetroChina is proud to be amongst the experienced joint venture participants that approved the Canada-based LNG Canada project today,” said Mr. Wei Gao, CFO of the China National Oil and Gas Exploration and Development (CNODC). “As PetroChina strives to build a diversified oil and gas portfolio, the LNG Canada project is an attractive investment opportunity. The project’s competitiveness, low carbon emissions and relatively short shipping distance to China mean LNG Canada can help supply the increasing demand for gas in China.”

Mitsubishi Corporation
“By launching this project, Mitsubishi Corporation will diversify its LNG supply portfolio, which contributes to enabling more stable energy supply to Asian customers,” said Hidenori Takaoka, Group CEO, Energy Business Group, Mitsubishi Corporation. “At the same time, this project will contribute to expanding local employment and economic development opportunities and will have the lowest GHG emissions of any LNG export facility in operations today. This is consistent with Mitsubishi’s goal of generating economic, societal and environmental value.”

“LNG Canada is Korea’s first major project in Canada,” said Jongkook Lim, Senior Executive Vice President, KOGAS. “LNG Canada is a significant and meaningful opportunity for Canada, as well as for the participants in the Joint Venture. It will provide a great opportunity for Korea to diversify its LNG supply sources and will be an example of LNG projects in Canada that value safety, environment and the local community in the years to come.”

-End of Article-

real estate vancouver, real estate development, condos, surrey real estate, real estate investment, investing, investment

Real Estate Development 101

Real Estate Development 101

Did you know that between Downtown Vancouver and Langley there are just over 2,000 total units available for sale – and only about four dozen of those are move-in ready right now?  With so many towers going up throughout Metro Vancouver, it may seem surprising that there is so little supply. But, the truth is that almost everything that’s being built today is nearly sold out before it’s even built.

But, that isn’t stopping those presale lineups. The math is simple: we have a finite amount of land in the region and a growing population that’s leading to increased housing demand.

This is particularly apparent in the City of Surrey, where the population is expected to grow by another 300,000 people by 2030.  There are approximately 150 new towers in the cue for development in Surrey, and exciting new amenities and transportation for the city’s five neighbourhoods make this community an appealing focus for real estate investment. In particular, Surrey City Centre is set for massive growth with a new LRT, expanded amenities and emerging businesses.  

Despite the looming growth, Surrey is still very affordable market to invest in real estate. Earlier this year, condo units were selling for around $750 per square foot. In contrast, the average new concrete condo in Vancouver sells for between $1,200 – $1,500 per sq. ft.

For most investors, the prices don’t make sense unless you get in on the ground floor and partner with other investors to fund the purchase or re-development of a real estate project in a top market like the City of Surrey.  

With mortgage rates creeping up and a more strict stress test for qualifying for a mortgage, many investors are opting for the partnership model. Our team at Investment Revenue Realty has developed the RealSimple investment strategy – a proven approach that often nets our investors’ double digit annual returns from their first year.

So, how does it all work?

1. Market Research and Discovery

As an investor, you’ll want to learn as much about the market and the real estate opportunities as possible. Investors can sign up for online webinars, walking tours, discovery trips, and real estate investment events to learn more about the process, the top markets, and the specific properties we have on offer.  Our team is also on hand throughout the process to help answer any questions you might have along the way.

2. Investment

We create a Limited Partnership (LP) for each property. One of the benefits of the LP is that investors don’t need to sign for the financing or qualify for a mortgage. We take care of the paperwork and secure financing from lenders. All you have to do is make the commitment, and let our team take care of the heavy lifting.

We also structure returns so that the investor receives 85% of the profit for returns up to 18%. Once we achieve this milestone, the investor will then receive 15% of the profits going forward. This is the second layer of protection for the investor to ensure they’re receiving sound returns should there be cost overruns.

3. Refreshing The Property

When we acquire an existing apartment unit, one of the benefits is that it is already cash flow positive. This means that the units are already tenanted and their rent is generating income for investors from Day 1.

We’re often able to increase that rental income shortly after acquiring the building by improving the units with small updates, such as a fresh coat of paint, flooring or new appliances. This means profits will increase right out of the gate.

4. Rezoning

When we purchase a property, there may be potential to rezone it for redevelopment.

These days, buildings are designed to be efficient and sustainable, so we can add more units to the existing land. For example: a six-story building with 200 units has the potential to become a 26 story building with 350 units, which will ultimately increase the amount of returns we can yield throughout the process.

Junior one bedroom units are common, offering comfortable living space at reasonable prices. At today’s going rates in Surrey, a 450 sq. ft. would only cost under $350,000, which is a fraction of the cost of a Vancouver condo. New buyers will be lining up to buy in no time!

It’s important to note that the building remains tenanted while we are going through the rezoning and permitting process, ensuring that our investors are protected against unexpected delays and we aren’t sitting on vacant land.

5. Pre-sales

Developers are required to pre-sell a property by between 75-95% before breaking ground. Once we’ve received approval to rezone an acquired property, we can then create a marketing plan to promote the new vision. We partner with British Columbia’s top firms, who specialize in pre-sales to ensure we are selling out as quickly and efficiently as possible.

6. Construction

Once we’ve achieved our pre-sale threshold, we will then go through the process of notifying tenants, demolishing the building and bringing to life the new vision for the tower. Depending on the building design, construction may take between 18-24 months.

7. New Owners Move In

Once the building is completed, the new homeowners move in and the investment term has completed. It’s then time to move on to the next opportunity!
So, there you have it, our RealSimple investment strategy. Want to learn more? Get in touch with one of our experts.

Colorado Springs, Phoenix, and Tampa, will see strong rent growth in 2017 because increased demand outpaces supply, allowing landlords to raise rents at a quick pace. As these areas have emerged from the Great Recession, they have added jobs and experienced population growth but have not had as much of an increase in multifamily construction as many other areas have had. READ MORE

BC working with feds on Pacific NorthWest LNG delay

Provincial officials are in Ottawa today to work with their federal counterparts on overcoming the latest delay for Pacific NorthWest LNG (PNW), B.C.’s natural gas minister says.

In a statement, Rich Coleman said senior officials from the province are in the capital to “reach a positive final outcome that helps our economy, protects the environment, and respects First Nations.”

“I’m confident that any remaining questions can be answered completely and quickly. They have to be. Jobs for British Columbians should not be held by unnecessary delays,” Coleman said.

“After all, this just isn’t any project. At $36-billion and 18,600 jobs, PNW LNG would be the largest private sector investment ever in Canadian history.”

“The positive impacts of PNW would be felt across almost every community in BC and across [full article here] 

Jordan Cove LNG lands sales agreement for gas

Jordan Cove LNG, a natural gas export facility proposed on the Oregon coast, has signed a 20-year sales agreement with world’s largest liquefied natural gas buyer.

The deal appears to put the project, which could take gas from the B.C. Montney formation, back on track after running into a roadblock with U.S. regulators.

JERA Co. Inc, a joint venture of the Tokyo Electric Power Company and Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc., signed on to buy 25 per cent of the project’s proposed 6 million tonnes per year output in a deal announced Tuesday.

The company is owned by Veresen Inc., a major midstream natural gas player with assets in the Dawson Creek area. [read full article]

Site C Dam civil construction begins in May

Site C Dam is 8 months into the 10-year Site C Dam project. While the physical construction of the Dam doesn’t begin until May, there has been lots of progress made to date.

This is the largest infrastructure project happening across Canada, located 7 km from Fort St. John.

Over the course of the project 33,000 jobs are expected to be created.

Billion-dollar gas plant approved for Dawson Creek area

A partnership involving Veresen Inc. and Encana Corp. that has already committed $1.5 billion to two new gas processing plants in the Dawson Creek area has announced plans to spend nearly $1 billion more on a third gas processing plant.

Veresen is already building two new gas plants in the Dawson Creek area – the Sunrise and Tower plants – with a combined capital cost of $1.5 billion.

Last year, Veresen acquired natural gas gathering and compression assets from Encana and the Cutbank Ridge Partnership.

As part of that deal, Veresen committed to $5 billion worth of investments to build out additional assets for Encana and the Cutbank Ridge Partnership. Under the agreement, Veresen is funding 55% to 60% of the three new gas plants.

The investments underscore the attraction of the Montney formation in Northeastern B.C. [full article here] 

Squamish Woodfibre LNG project gets federal environmental approval

The federal government gave its stamp of approval to the $1.6-billion Woodfibre liquefied natural gas project Friday.

Exporting and processing 2.1 million tonnes of LNG each year from the former pulp mill site southwest of Squamish is unlikely to hurt the environment, according to a release from Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change.

Winning environmental approval from the federal government was the last major hurdle to clear for the polarizing project, which can start launching 40 double-hulled LNG-bearing tankers to Asia each year, beginning as early as 2017.

The project should create about 650 construction jobs during the building phase and more than 100 jobs once the plant is operational. [full article here]


BC Hydro has finalized and awarded its civil works contract with Peace River Hydro Partners for the Site C dam.SiteCContract

The eight-year contract, announced Monday, now has a confirmed value of $1.75 billion.

The main civil works includes the construction of an earthfill dam, two diversion tunnels and a roller-compacted concrete foundation for the generating station and spillways.

At the peak of construction, roughly 1,500 people will be working on main civil works, Hydro says.

[read full article here]