BRITISH COLUMBIA

David Black 'Confident' Money In Place To Build Kitimat Refinery

08/12/2013 03:33 EDT | Updated 10/12/2013 05:12 EDT
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A B.C. media mogul says he has found the $25 billion he needs to build a crude oil refinery in Kitimat, but he had to raise more than $6 billion in Canada after Chinese investors backpedalled on the deal.

"They wanted me to raise the last quarter in Canada, and I'm confident the money is there," David Black told the CBC's Kathryn Gretsinger on The Early Edition Monday.

The owner of Black Press Group would not say where the $6 billion was coming from.

The plant, to be built north of Kitimat, would refine oil from the Alberta oilsands shipped either by pipeline or rail.

Black's initial proposal was estimated at $13 billion and prompted criticism from both the B.C. NDP and the federal Green Party leader, Elizabeth May.

A decision to adopt a new technology that would cut the carbon dioxide emissions by half, and other costs with the project, brought the total capital investment to $25 billion.

"It does increase the capital cost… but it's worth it," Black said.

The refinery — which should have the capacity to process the entire output of the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline — will create 3,000 full-time jobs, 6,000 temporary jobs and generate large tax revenues for the government, Black has said.

Earlier this year, B.C. Premier Christy Clark said she supported the Kitimat project, but it would be subject to her five conditions for allowing heavy oil pipelines in the province — the same conditions she laid down for the Enbridge proposal.

Environmental groups and members of Canada's First Nations have expressed concern about a pipeline moving crude oil across ecologically sensitive northern B.C.

But Black says it will be easier to sell the oil project to First Nations communities than Enbridge's Northern Gateway because his refinery will keep bitumen out of tankers off B.C.'s coast.

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