FERC on Thursday approved Sempra Energy's plans to expand the Cameron LNG terminal in Hackberry, LA, to about 2.65 Bcf/d of sendout capacity from 1.5 Bcf/d. The sendout capacity of the expanded terminal would be about 1.8 Bcf/d on an interim basis, ramping up to the full 2.65 Bcf/d. The expansion project is expected to be in service in October 2010.
The project also would include the addition of a fourth LNG storage tank, bringing the storage capability of the facility to 640,000 cubic meters. In addition, the project would increase the LNG unloading rate at each berth from 12,000 cubic meters per hour to 17,500 cubic meters per hour, and would include facilities to produce and inject inert gas into the exiting gas stream as an optional method of controlling its heat content.
To date, Sempra has sold Cameron LNG capacity to Merrill Lynch Commodities and Eni Spa. "Because the expansion project will provide incremental capacity at market-based rates, the economic risks of the expansion project will be borne by Cameron LNG," FERC noted in its draft order. The Commission also noted that since the project is not yet in service there is no danger of subsidization of expansion costs by existing customers. Commercial operations at Cameron LNG are expected to begin in 2008.
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