Is Nova Scotia’s gas industry about to go up in smoke?

Posted on March 22, 2021 | By Richard Woodbury | 0 Comments


Once upon a time, Nova Scotia was home to an impressive pair of firsts in Canadian offshore oil and natural gas production.

The country’s first offshore oil project, Cohasset Panuke, was about 250 km southeast of Halifax on the Scotian Shelf. It produced 44.5 million barrels of oil between 1992-99. Canada’s first offshore natural gas project, Sable Offshore Energy Project, encompassed seven production platforms spread over 200 square kilometres near Sable Island. It operated from 1999-2018 and produced 2.1 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. A third project, Deep Panuke, ran from 2013-18 and produced 147.2 billion cubic feet of natural gas. Since 1999, royalties from Nova Scotia’s offshore projects have totalled $2 billion.

The common theme through all of those stories? They’re all in the past. Decommissioning of Sable and Deep Panuke began in 2018 and there are no projects set to replace them.

The 1,101-kilometre Maritimes and Northeast Pipeline was built more than two decades ago to take natural gas from offshore Nova Scotia to markets in Atlantic Canada and the northeastern United States. With production having dried up, the pipeline is no longer doing what it originally set out to do.

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