Storage Worth Its Salt
CBW Engineering is an oil services firm that is flourishing – building salt caverns to store the flood of gas and liquids from North America’s shale boom
KEEPING UP WITH CUSTOMER DEMAND IS NOT A PROBLEM
that many energy service companies have the luxury of dealing with these days. But CBW Engineering is a notable – and noteworthy – exception. That’s because the Calgary firm specializes in designing and drilling salt caverns, which can be used to store everything from hydrocarbons to waste products. And while the volume of work available in the above-ground world has dwindled considerably, the salt cavern trade continues to be a good one. Natural gas production and natural gas liquids output are still rising across North America, and some markets need greater liquidity at hubs and face pipeline capacity bottlenecks.
“I don’t think we’re in a boom,” says CEO Ken Kindjerski. “It’s just that the industry is in a slump, and that’s the only business that’s going. If it was busy, nobody would see us.” His business partner, Dustin Kinch, says the company intends to press that advantage. “There are lots of people knocking on the door right now. They see the place that we’re fortunate to be in right now, so our goal right now is to ramp up and improve the quality of what we’re