Pieridae’s Goldboro Debacle

Something the vast majority of Canadians don’t seem to realize is that we, as citizens, are on the hook for cleaning up billions (if not trillions) of dollars’ worth of environmental waste across the country.

Industries continue dumping their waste into the laps of citizens, who are completely unaware of these looming, massive and unpaid environmental bills. It is my belief that corporations should be required to post significant bonds before they start operations of any kind. These dedicated funds, held in trust, would be used to clean up any and all environmental messes should the corporation prove unable to afford the cleanup once they have completed the extraction of whatever resources they obtained permits for.

Artist's rendering of proposed Goldboro LNG Terminal

Artist’s rendering of proposed Goldboro LNG Terminal (Source: Pieridae)

My premise is that Canadian citizens should NOT be on the hook to clean up the environmental mess left behind by businesses that make significant profits and then simply walk away. Big oil/gas corporations have abandoned thousands of drill sites that have NOT been capped properly so they continue to leak huge amounts of methane and other harmful greenhouse gases (GHGs).


And on the subject of businesses that are (apparently) supposed to start operations soon in this part of the country, I would like to talk about Pieridae. Founded in 2011, Pieridae, a majority Canadian owned corporation based in Calgary, is focused on the development of integrated, energy-related activities, from the exploration and extraction of natural gas to the development, construction and operation of the Goldboro LNG facility and the production of LNG for sale to Europe and other markets.

Pieridae’s stated plan is to use conventional and fracked gas — a prime culprit in the production of GHGs — send it through a pipeline to Goldboro, Nova Scotia where it will be liquified and transported to Europe for sale there. Besides the absolutely enormous negative environmental consequences attached to this project, Pieridae has no confirmed end-price deal at the other end, which is one more flaw in this bizarre scheme. CEO Alfred Sorensen has been trying to obtain financing for this $10 billion idea from almost anywhere he can, including the Canadian federal government, of which he is asking almost $1 billion.

Ken Summers of the Nova Scotia Fracking Resource and Action Coalition (NOFRAC) said the proposal should be scrapped because LNG plants are notoriously large polluters. As Summers told the CBC last October:

If this project were to go ahead, Nova Scotia’s greenhouse gas emission targets would be gone out the window.

We already have eight fossil fuel-driven power generating stations (four coal and four fuel oil) that need to be shut down sooner rather than later but this won’t happen until we can get more solar and wind generators on line. The federal and provincial governments should be spending as much of our taxes on GREEN energy development as possible but definitely NOT on Liquid Natural Gas.


Intelligent decisions are based on facts and past performance, so when you take a look at Pieridae’s performance on the stock market right now — and how it has performed for the past several years — you will understand my lack of faith in them.

To allow their  Goldboro project to move forward, Peiridae petitioned the Province of Nova Scotia to re-route Hwy 316 around the proposed project site for “safety” reasons. Environment Minister Keith Irving has recently agreed to this, which raises a lot of questions in my mind.

2018 site preparation for proposed Goldboro LNG project. Photo: Alexander Bridge

2018 site preparation for proposed Goldboro LNG project. Photo: Alexander Bridge courtesy Halifax Examiner https://www.halifaxexaminer.ca/province-house/the-goldboro-gamble/

Former-Environment Minister Gordon Wilson said making room for a large emitter such as an LNG plant would make meeting emission reduction targets “challenging,” but that overall, greenhouse gas emissions are coming down in Nova Scotia, as if this somehow might justify approval of the Goldboro LNG project. Well yes, those emissions are coming down, thanks to wind and solar installations built in the last decade, but it is definitely NOT because of the decommissioning of fossil fuel-fired and biomass-generating stations. Does this permission to re-route Highway 316 mean the Pieridae Goldboro project has already been approved by our provincial government?

How are we going to reach our climate change goals if projects like this are even considered? This makes NO sense to me whatsoever, especially when very knowledgeable people within the energy and financial industry are viewing this idea as a boondoggle. The public needs to research the issue and understand the future consequences of this decision and make their views well known.

A good place to start might be Joan Baxter’s very thorough article about this same issue for the Halifax Examiner. I encourage you to read it.


Paul Strome

Paul Strome worked 12 years as an educator in the Northwest Territories/Nunavut where he experienced the culture, language and geographic parameters of Indigenous people. He has petitioned the government at every opportunity to bring about the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous People. As an elder and David Suzuki Ambassador he has championed the Blue Dot Movement in Unama’ki (Cape Breton) and in recent years was the Atlantic regional representative for the Council of Canadians.