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February 2017

Jacques Benoit named PFEC president

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Jacques Benoit

Jacques Benoit, Pacific Future Energy Corporation’s chief operating officer, has taken on the additional role of company president.

“Jacques will lead our engineering, environmental and permitting effort through the next few years,” said Samer Salameh, executive chairman and CEO.

“He’s an environmental engineer with considerable large-scale project experience. His experience and commitment in that field will be crucial as we move forward to build the world’s greenest refinery.

“He will also play a vital role in building relationships and trust with all the First Nations who would be affected by the project. He will deliver on our approach of ‘First Nations First’ through which we recognize Indigenous title, rights, and governance.”

Salameh himself will primarily focus now on investor relations and capital markets, and on finalizing client-markets overseas and in North America for PFEC’s refined fuels.

Benoit has worked on more than 30 major projects, including the Hibernia Offshore Oil Development (on the Grand Banks, off Newfoundland and Labrador), the Hibernia offshore transshipment terminal, the Sable Offshore Energy Project (near Sable island, off Nova Scotia) and the Eastern Siberia-Far East natural-gas pipeline project in Russia.

Salameh noted that the Hibernia project is the largest ever built by using pre-fabricated modules.

“Jacques’ experience will be critical for us as our plan is to have pre-fabricated modules built in Asia. We would then bring them in by sea and assemble them at the refinery site.”

Benoit has also led more than 25 energy-related projects through Canadian federal and provincial regulatory processes. These include the Arctic Pilot natural gas proposal in the High Arctic, and the Rabaska LNG terminal in Quebec.

Benoit has more than 37 years experience in the environmental and oil/gas engineering fields in Canada and internationally. He has lived and worked in Japan for nine years. Before joining PFEC in January 2015 he was senior vice-president for the environmental and water division of SNC-Lavalin, managing a staff of 1,200. He is also the author of many industry publications.

Pacific Future Energy plans to build its refinery, co-created with First Nations, at a site halfway between Terrace and Kitimat in northwestern BC. Cost is estimated at $11-14 billion (U.S. dollars).

PFEC’s project now is in the Federal Environmental Assessment process. PFEC expects the federal government to name soon an independent review panel of outside experts to conduct its assessment.   

The refinery would produce 200,000 barrels a day of diesel, gasoline and jet fuel. And it would create an estimated 3,500 jobs during construction, and 1,000 permanent jobs during operation.

Media contact: Don MacLachlan,, 604-329-8712