Newfoundland and Labrador’s Noia addresses further delay on Bay du Nord project
News that a further delay in approving the environmental assessment of the Bay du Nord project is disappointing to Newfoundland & Labrador Oil & Gas Industries Association (Noia) and its members, however, the association is confident in the merits of the project and looks forward to the Government of Canada approving the project as soon as possible based on the information reviewed as part of the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada process.
“Learning that the decision on the Bay du Nord project has again been delayed is disappointing for Noia and our members,” said Charlene Johnson, Noia CEO. “This project is environmentally sound and critically important to the future of our province.”
Any project delay creates uncertainty in our industry, she said, and while this is disappointing, a final decision will come within the next 40 days and Noia believes that decision should be approval of the environmental assessment due to the sound environmental and economic qualities of the project.
“In August 2021, the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada, after a comprehensive review by one of the most robust environmental assessment processes in the world, recommended the project for approval as it stated the project is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects,” Johnson said.
The Bay du Nord project will include industry leading innovations in not just production, but also environmental mitigations and employee safety. The project stands to set the international standard for future offshore development projects which places Newfoundland and Labrador and Canada as global leaders during the energy evolution. The Bay du Nord project currently estimated to be a project valued at over $12 billion is expected to provide $3.5 billion in government revenues, 11,000 person years of employment, and $300 million in research and development. These benefits are very conservative as they were calculated prior to the resource total increasing; they represent substantive fiscal benefits for Newfoundland and Labrador and Canada while greatly contributing to the province’s efforts to develop renewable energy projects and achieve net zero by 2050, if not before.
“We have been working closely with our provincial and federal representatives and we need to do what is right for Newfoundland and Labrador and follow the recommendation of the Impact Assessment Agency to approve this world-class project,” Johnson said. “Our world requires low carbon energy to meet demand. The oil produced offshore Newfoundland and Labrador is below the global average for emissions at extraction and is produced with world leading ESG standards. Noia has been saying for years that as long as the world needs oil, Newfoundland and Labrador should be a supplier because of our ESG standards. Equinor is a global leader in energy production and the energy evolution and strives to achieve the lowest carbon energy footprint possible.”
Noia recently hired an independent firm to survey public opinion on the offshore oil and gas industry. The poll taken in January shows that 84% of respondents support the Newfoundland and Labrador offshore oil and gas industry and 89% of respondents with knowledge of the Bay du Nord project support its approval.