Canadian Manufacturing

Fergus, Encana to build LNG production facility in northern Alberta

To be built near Grande Prairie, Alta., will produce 190,000-litres per day of liquefied natural gas


CALGARY—A pair of natural gas producers say they are building a liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility in northwestern Alberta.

Encana Corp. and Ferus LNG Inc., announced plans to build a 190,000-litre per day LNG production facility near Grande Prairie, Alberta, about 500 kilometres northwest of Edmonton.

The two firms say the planned facility is strategically located in close proximity to high levels of energy industry activity in northwestern Alberta and northeastern British Columbia.

It is expected to be operational by the end of 2013 and will be among the first in Canada designed to produce high-quality LNG fuel specifically for high-horsepower (HHP) engines used in drilling rigs and pressure pumping services, as well as heavy-duty highway and off-road trucks.

Other HHP applications for this LNG supply include rail, mining and remote power generation.

To support the entire LNG supply chain, Encana and Ferus have also designed and are in the process of building specialized mobile storage and dispensing equipment.

“LNG is quickly becoming the fuel of choice for HHP engines in both highway and off-road applications in North America,” Encana executive vice-president Eric Marsh said in a statement.

“This project demonstrates the increasing viability of LNG as a fuel alternative for a wide range of industries. With this new LNG plant, Encana and Ferus LNG are meeting a growing market demand by helping diesel consumers in northern and western Canada make the switch to cleaner-burning natural gas to both save costs and reduce their emissions.”

Both companies plan to use the fuel for their own internal consumption.

In 2011 alone, Encana saved $12-million in fuel costs by using natural gas instead of diesel in drilling rigs and company trucks and says it is on track to exceed that figure in 2012.

“Ferus Inc. understands the economic and environmental benefits of using LNG as an alternative fuel, and as such, not only are we operating the first two LNG tractors in Alberta, we plan to convert our entire truck fleet over the next five years,” Fergus president and CEO Richard Brown said in a statement.

“We are very pleased to be working with Encana to help develop the natural gas engine market by ensuring fuel supply and operating the necessary equipment to safely and reliably get the product to our customers’ site.”