Encana Corp. and Ferus LNG Inc. have announced plans to build a 190,000-litre-per-day liquefied natural gas (LNG) production facility near Grande Prairie, Alberta, about 500 kilometres northwest of Edmonton.
The facility will be the first in Canada to produce high-quality LNG fuel specifically for high-horsepower (HHP) engines used in drilling rigs, pressure pumping services, heavy-duty highway and off-road trucks.
“LNG is quickly becoming the fuel of choice for HHP engines in both highway and off-road applications in North America,” Encana Executive VP Eric Marsh said in a December 17, 2012 statement about the project.
LNG’s reduced volume makes it a cost-efficient way to transport natural gas. It is often regasified upon delivery to the market.
With the Grand Prairie LNG facility expected to be operational by the end of 2013, Encana and Ferus are also building specialized mobile storage and dispensing equipment to support the entire LNG supply chain in the region.
Other HHP applications for the LNG supply chain include rail, mining and remote power generation.
“This project demonstrates the increasing viability of LNG as a fuel alternative for a wide range of industries,” Marsh said. “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.
“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 the released statement.
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