A coronavirus cluster has emerged at the LNG Canada site in Kitimat, western Canada, with at least 41 people testing positive.

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LNG Canada and the JGC Fluor joint venture — the grassroots liquefied natural gas project’s lead engineering, procurement and construction contractor — said they are working closely with Northern Health Authority to carry out the contact tracing protocols.

“Our efforts are currently focused on the recovery of these affected individuals, the disinfection and sanitisation of the impacted work areas, and the wellbeing of all project workers,” said LNG Canada.

“As well, we remain committed to protecting the health and safety of the First Nations and community stakeholders neighbouring our project site in Kitimat and Terrace.”

LNG Canada added that there had been thorough disinfection and sanitisation, including electrostatic cleaning, of the impacted work areas, and it had reinstated its work-from-home policy for non-essential staff.

“We are actively reviewing our Covid-19 safety plans with Northern Health and will make all necessary updates as they are identified,” said the project operator.

Thirty-four of the 41 coronavirus cases remain active, according to Northern Health, of which 16 people are in self-isolation at the LNG project construction site in British Columbia.

The Covid-19 outbreak was first declared on 19 November after evidence of transmission was found among workers at the site. Fourteen staff the tested positive. There is no known public exposure in Kitimat linked to this cluster, according to Northern Health.

The initial two-train LNG Canada development will have capacity for 14 million tonnes per annum of LNG and a further two trains could be added in subsequent development phases. First volumes are expected in the mid 2020s.

Shell operates LNG Canada with a 40% stake and is partnered by Petronas on 25%, PetroChina and Mitsubishi each with 15% and Kogas on 5%.