Cheniere Ramps Up Activity As Greenspan Touts LNG

Following closely on the heels of Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan's pro-LNG testimony before a House panel, Cheniere Energy Inc. said Friday that it has closed the formation of its partnership with BPU LNG, an affiliate of Sherwin Alumina, to build an LNG receiving facility on a site adjacent to the Sherwin Alumina plant in Corpus Christi, TX. The partnership was first announced in mid-May (see Daily GPI, May 16).

Corpus Christi LNG, LP (CCLP) will own a 210-acre tract of land and will control approximately 400 additional acres through permanent easements. BPU said it will contribute the land, the first $4.5 million of development costs and 33.33% of any additional expenses associated with the project in return for a 33.33% limited partnership interest. The project is expected to consist of two docking berths, three storage tanks and 2.6 Bcf/d of peak vaporization capacity.

"Since announcing our intent to form a partnership with BPU last month, we have met with a variety of agencies in Corpus Christi and San Patricio county and have found the local community to be quite supportive of the LNG receiving terminal project," said Charif Souki, Cheniere's CEO.

On Tuesday, Greenspan told the House panel that if the United States wanted to maintain its current standard of living, it would have to become a bigger player in the global gas market by importing more liquefied natural gas (see Daily GPI, June 11).

From the looks of things, Cheniere intends to do just that. The company's other LNG projects include a 30% stake in Freeport LNG Development LP, which is developing an LNG receiving terminal facility in Freeport, TX. The facility will have one berth and two storage tanks and will have peak vaporization capacity of 1.5 Bcf/day. Freeport filed an application for permits with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in March 2003.(see Daily GPI, April 1).

Houston-based Cheniere is also developing a facility in Sabine Pass, LA. Like the Corpus Christi facility, the Sabine Pass facility will also have two docking berths, three storage tanks and 2.6 Bcf/d of peak vaporization capacity. Cheniere said these two LNG facilities are planned to be larger than any facilities yet built in the U.S. Just last month, Cheniere awarded the Front End Engineering Design contract for both facilities and expects to file applications for permits with FERC in January 2004.

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