Tilbury Phase 2 LNG expansion project

About this project

For nearly 50 years, the Tilbury liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility has been at the heart of B.C.’s energy system, providing natural gas on the coldest days of the year. Now we’re planning to expand our facility to meet increasing demand for liquefied natural gas (LNG) into the future and help us reach our 30BY30 target to reduce our customers’ greenhouse gas emissions 30 per cent by 2030.

LNG is natural gas that has been cooled to -162C, becoming a clear, non-toxic and non-flammable liquid. We use LNG to supplement the Lower Mainland gas supply when you need it most – on days of high demand like when the temperature drops.>

The Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project will improve the resiliency of the gas system – ensuring we have the natural gas supply our customers need, in the event of an emergency. It will also help us advance LNG as a marine fuel or meet demand from overseas customers. The project will include the construction of:

  • a new storage tank that can hold up to 162,000 cubic metres of LNG, potentially tripling Tilbury’s current storage capacity
  • a new liquefaction unit with capacity of 3.5 million tonnes per year to produce LNG for marine fuelling or overseas export

Ship owners are responding to new sulphur emission regulations from the International Maritime Organization by adopting LNG as a marine fuel. Traditionally, about 86 per cent of ocean-going ships have used heavy fuel oils to power their engines, but these oils can be harmful to the environment. As of 2020, an estimated 10-20 per cent of new ships on order will be LNG fuelled. At the same time, there is growing interest from overseas customers looking to buy LNG from Canada to lower their carbon footprint.

Our Tilbury LNG facility is ideally positioned to meet these opportunities and we’re aiming to elevate Tilbury’s role in the global transition to lower carbon energy. Tilbury is powered by renewable hydroelectricity, which means it can produce a cleaner marine fuel than other LNG facilities.

Next steps

Tilbury rendering
Rendering of potential Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project

Impact Assessment/Environmental Assessment

We’ve submitted an Initial Project Description for the Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project to the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada and the BC Environmental Assessment Office. FortisBC is committed to ongoing engagement throughout the project.

The Project is now in the Early Engagement phase, which gives the public, Indigenous Groups and stakeholders an opportunity to learn more and provide feedback to the regulatory agencies. Virtual open houses were held in June 2020.

For more information on the regulatory process please visit:

Impact Assessment Agency of Canada

Environmental Assessment Office of BC

Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity

The Tilbury LNG Storage Expansion project is subject to regulation by the BC Utilities Commission (BCUC).  In December 2020, we filed our project application for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity with the BCUC. The project will include the construction of the new LNG storage tank and equipment to increase our capacity to flow gas from the Tilbury LNG facility back into our system that serves BC.

While preparing to submit our application, we’ve been engaging local governments, Indigenous communities, landowners, and area residents to share details on the project and obtain feedback. Anyone interested in getting involved with the process has until February 25, 2021 to register with the BCUC.

We’re pleased to be one step closer to ensuring we have an additional backup source of natural gas in the event of a gas supply disruption. If approved, construction could start in 2022 and be completed by 2026.

Community and Indigenous engagement

FortisBC is committed to continuing engagement with the local community, including opportunities for dialogue throughout these regulatory processes. The feedback we receive will form part of our application to the BCUC and part of our detailed project description we will file with the Impact Assessment Agency and Environmental Assessment Office later this year.

If approved, construction could start as early as 2022 and be complete by 2028.

Project highlights

Creating jobs and economic opportunities

Employment, training and contractor opportunities will be available throughout project planning and construction, and approximately another 110 new long-term jobs will be created once construction is complete. Job postings will be added to our career postings when they are available. You can also apply to become a supplier or vendor for the project.

We are working closely with local businesses like Ideal Welders to create local jobs and put money back into the BC economy. Learn about the work we’re doing with Ideal Welders.

Tilbury apprentice worker

About LNG

What is LNG?

Our LNG storage facilities are monitored 24/7 year-round by highly trained site personnel who have been producing LNG for decades.  Within its double-walled insulated storage tank, LNG is maintained in liquid form, without air, and will not burn.

Tilbury marine LNG: reducing emissions, expanding opportunities

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) from our Tilbury facility is helping marine industry partners reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 27%. Through industry-leading initiatives, and continued investment in our LNG infrastructure, our vision of Vancouver as a global LNG marine hub is becoming a reality.

Project application filed for Tilbury Storage Expansion

Today marks a major step forward as we file our project application for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity with the British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC). The Tilbury Storage Expansion project would strengthen the resiliency of our natural gas system so that we can help ensure our customers have the energy they need in their homes and businesses.

The project would include the construction of a new liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage tank and equipment to increase our capacity to flow gas back into our gas system. If approved, construction could start in 2022 and be completed by 2026.

Visit BCUC’s web site to learn more how you can get involved in the BCUC’s regulatory process.

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Tilbury Phase 2 public comment period begins

The environmental assessment of the Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project resumes June 1 with a 45-day public comment period led by the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada and BC Environmental Assessment Office. During this time, the public is invited to learn more about the project and participate in virtual open houses on June 18 and June 23. Full details on how to participate online or by phone will be shared soon. For more details on the regulatory process, and to provide input on the project, visit either the EAO or IAAC websites.

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Engagement timelines for Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion project extended

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, FortisBC has requested and received approval from the Environmental Assessment Office to extend Early Engagement on the Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project from 90 days to 120 days. At the same time, FortisBC has requested and received approval from the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada to suspend the 180-day time limit of the Planning Phase for 30 days. This will allow additional time to ensure meaningful engagement with the public, stakeholders and Indigenous groups.

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Early engagement begins on Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project

FortisBC Holdings Inc. (“FortisBC”) has filed an initial project description with regulators to begin the federal impact assessment and provincial environmental assessment processes for the Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project (the “Project”). 

If approved, the Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project may involve:

  • Constructing a new tank that could triple the site’s storage capacity and strengthen the resiliency of our gas system
  • Constructing additional liquefaction equipment to produce LNG for marine bunkering or bulk export by ship
  • If approved, construction could start as early as 2022 and be complete by 2028.

FortisBC is committed to continuing engagement with Indigenous groups and the local community on the Project. As part of early engagement with the public, Indigenous Groups and other stakeholders, FortisBC will be participating in an EAO-led open house scheduled for this spring in Delta. Learn more about the Project.

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Regulatory process

We’ve submitted an Initial Project Description for the Tilbury Phase 2 LNG Expansion Project to the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada and the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office. FortisBC is committed to ongoing engagement throughout the project.

The project is now in the early engagement phase, which gives the public, Indigenous groups and stakeholders an opportunity to learn more and provide feedback. This will include in-person engagement activities such as a public open house. For more information on the regulatory process please visit:

Canada Impact Assessment

B.C. Environmental Assessment

Virtual open houses

June 18, 2020
Review our presentation   

June 23, 2020
Review our presentation

Indigenous engagement

We’re committed to ongoing engagement with Indigenous groups so we can better understand the interests, concerns and vision of their respective communities. As the project develops, we will be working with Indigenous communities on securing opportunities for procurement, training and employment as well as oversight of construction and operation.

How we partner with local communities

FortisBC supports the communities where we live and work. A big part of that is providing support for local organizations and the great work they do in the community. Here are some of the organizations in the City of Delta we’ve supported recently.

Delta Community Animal Shelter

FortisBC supports Delta Community Animal Shelter

Free seminars for animal lovers, children calmly reading books to purring cats, dogs frolicking in an off-leash fenced yard…no, this isn’t a spa for pets.  This is the Delta Community Animal Shelter, and it’s changing perceptions of what an animal shelter can be.

OWL (Orphaned Wildlife) Rehabilitation Centre

OWL (Orphaned Wildlife) Rehabilitation Centre

Of the 650 to 700 birds of prey that come through its door every year, OWL is able to successfully rehabilitate and release more than 50 per cent back into the wild. Others may be kept at the centre permanently to help with public outreach and education programs in schools, such as long time OWL resident Sonsie, a male bald eagle who is an “education ambassador” for the OWL Rehabilitation Centre.

Reach Child and Youth Development Society

In 2016, FortisBC presented the Reach Child and Youth Development Society  with $10,000 for their Building for Children Together project. This venture will see that a new child development centre is built to ensure children with special needs have a safe and accessible location for support.

In 2016, a donation was presented to the Rotary Club of Ladner, and will go towards a brand new water park located in Memorial Park. The upgrade is critical for this park due to safety issues, including an old concrete floor surface.

The water park is directly across from the new Reach Child Development Centre, and the families it supports will be frequent users of the park.

Why are you expanding the Tilbury LNG facility?

FortisBC is already producing LNG for marine customers and for customers overseas. This expansion will allow us to produce more LNG to meet increasing demand and to support our 30BY30 target. By expanding Tilbury’s capacity, we can advance LNG as a lower-carbon alternative fuel to diesel or bunker oil for marine shipping.

•    Our facility is powered by renewable hydroelectricity, which means our LNG has among the lowest carbon intensity in the world on a lifecycle basis. 
•    LNG as a marine fuel can lower ship exhaust emissions of: Sulphur oxides (SOx) to almost zero, nitrogen oxides (NOx) by up to 95%, particulate matter (PM) by up to 99% depending on the engine used. It can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 21%.
•    Chinese industrial customers can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30-50% if they switch from domestic sources of energy such as coal to LNG from Tilbury, according to an analysis commissioned by FortisBC.

 

Will the Project provide local jobs and other economic benefits?

The Tilbury Expansion project will create employment and contracting opportunities during planning and construction, and approximately 110 long-term jobs once construction is complete. We are committed to creating jobs for local workers through education and training programs, as well as direct and indirect opportunities.

The project’s economic benefits will be distributed not only in the LNG industry, but also to the industries that support it, including everything from manufacturing to engineering to professional services. Economic benefits will go beyond the Lower Mainland to the energy heartland in northeastern BC where gas is produced.

When will the Project be in service?

Phase 1: The Tilbury liquefaction expansion, phase one, is scheduled to be in service by 2023.

Phase 2: The new Tilbury LNG storage tank is scheduled to be in service by 2025. The phase two liquefaction equipment expansion is scheduled to be in service by 2028.

What environmental benefits will the Project provide?

LNG is a clean burning fossil fuel that reduces greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by replacing less efficient, less clean fuels such as diesel, coal and oil. LNG-powered ships can reduce GHG emissions by up to 21%. They can also reduce air pollution including nitrogen oxides by up to 95%, particulate matter by up to 99% and sulphur oxides to almost zero, compared to other marine fuels.

Who do we contact if we have more questions about the Project?

Please call us at 1-855-576-7133 or email tilbury.info@fortisbc.com.

What is LNG and is it safe?

Liquefied natural gas is made from the same natural gas we use in our homes every day. To make it easier to transport by truck or ship, it is cooled to a liquid form. Within its double-walled insulated storage tank, LNG is maintained in liquid form, without air, and will not burn.

FortisBC’s Tilbury LNG facility has been operating safely since 1971.

What happens if there is a leak?

LNG is made from the same natural gas we use in our homes and businesses every day. LNG is stored and transported at low pressure in double-walled tanks designed to keep it cold. The tanks are vapour tight, so air cannot get in and LNG cannot leak out. When stored in its double-walled tank, LNG cannot burn because there is no oxygen to react with.

In the unlikely event of a leak, LNG will warm up, rise and dissipate. If spilled, it will quickly warm up and revert to a gaseous state. LNG is flammable only in a narrow range (if the gas to air ratio is between five and 15 per cent). When ignited, LNG burns slowly with a lazy flame.

What safety measures will be in place?

The Tilbury LNG facility already has procedures and safety measures in place to prevent and manage emergencies. This includes complete on-site fire control and response systems independent of the fire department. The facility is also monitored 24/7 year-round by highly-trained site personnel who have been producing LNG for decades.

We also do regular emergency exercises with first responders to coordinate our response in the unlikely event of an emergency.

Could LNG have an impact on water or soil?

LNG is colourless, odourless, non-toxic and non-corrosive. In the unlikely event of a spill, LNG would warm up quickly, turn back into a gas and rise, leaving no residue. If spilled on water, it won’t mix. It remains on the surface and vaporizes quickly.

Will this project be regulated by the BC Utilities Commission? What will the rate impact be?

The Tilbury LNG Storage Expansion project is subject to regulation by the BC Utilities Commission. The project would include the construction of the new LNG storage tank and equipment to increase our capacity to flow gas from the Tilbury LNG facility back into our system that serves BC This will strengthen the overall resiliency of our natural gas system for all customers.

Costs and rate changes were included in our application to the British Columbia Utilities Commission that was submitted on December 29, 2020. The typical FEI residential customer will see an average increase of approximately $6 per year over six years.