Pieridae shows strong Q1 results despite oil prices, pandemic

Guysborough Journal Helen Murphy June 3 2020

GUYSBOROUGH – With strong financial results, an eager customer and changing economic conditions, Pieridae Energy says now is the time for governments to get on board to help get its Goldboro LNG project built.

The company continues to reap benefits from its acquisition of gas-producing Shell assets in the Alberta Foothills last fall. Despite a steep drop in oil prices and the impacts of COVID-19, Pieridae announced strong financial results for the first quarter of 2020.

“We continue to see the benefits of last fall’s Foothills asset acquisition, with Pieridae recording strong financial results in spite of very challenging market conditions,” said CEO Alfred Sorensen in a news release May 28. “Once again, our strong operational performance and positive hedging strategy helped insulate us from the current harsh realities.”

The quarter saw a substantial increase in revenue and net operating income compared to Q1 2019. The strong financial position allows Pieridae to continue development of the Goldboro LNG project, and the CEO said he’d like to see provincial and federal governments help make it a reality.

“With a number of global LNG projects either being cancelled or delayed, now is the time for Canada to seize the opportunity to enter into this industry at a time when others are exiting,” said Sorensen. “Our Goldboro LNG Project is sound and supports the fundamental principles of First Nations reconciliation; interlocks with the goals of the Paris Climate Accord; would create good paying, middle-class jobs across the country; and opens up new energy trade routes to get sustainably-produced Canadian natural gas to global markets.”

During a telephone interview Monday, Sorensen told The Journal he’s been working with provincial and federal governments to see how Pieridae might “take advantage of programs coming out to relaunch the economy.”

He said the company is “creating enough cash flow now that we can fund the LNG project much more stably than we have in the past,” moving the project forward without the “stops and starts” of the past.

“Our buyer (Uniper) really wants to see this happen. They continue to be very supportive,” Sorensen said. “We’re trying to see how we can begin doing site prep work in 2020 and early 2021 so we can take advantage of where economies are right now and get some boots on the ground. We are construction ready.

“This is an important infrastructure project, not only for Nova Scotia and Alberta, but for all of Canada as well…2024 -25 is when we will see demand flip and we want to be ready for that.”

Sorensen said he wants to see how the project can fit into government funding programs. “My desire is not to be given something for nothing,” he said. Rather, he said he’s looking for financing support, such as how the Alberta government supported the Keystone pipeline project.

“Some kind of financing to get us to when project reaches commissioning.”

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