2019 to bring more drilling, new propane exports

There was little new drilling activity in the natural gas fields of B.C. in recent years, but towards the end of 2018, Petronas, through its Canadian subsidiary Progress Energy, moved a drilling rig into Northeast B.C. to begin a new gas well drilling program. Progress owns a 25% stake in the LNG Canada project.

“They’ve now got one rig going non-stop, and they plan to add to that over the next year to go to two rigs,” said Dan Allan, president of the Canadian Society for Unconventional Resources..

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“That’s a very a positive sign, when everybody else has been slowing down their activity.”

Some of the investments in the Montney formation in northeastern B.C. in recent years have had less to do with LNG and more to do with natural gas liquids – condensate, light oil and propane.

AltaGas Ltd., for example, cancelled its Douglas Channel LNG project and instead focused on propane.

The company has been building a new propane export terminal in Prince Rupert, at a cost of $400 million to $500 million. The new Ridley Island Propane Export Terminal is expected to begin exporting propane in the first quarter of 2019.

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