The U.S. Coast Guard and Maritime Administration (MARAD) Friday announced the availability of the final environmental impact statement (FEIS) for a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal offshore Alabama in the Gulf of Mexico proposed by Norwegian firm TORP Terminal LP. The agencies have scheduled a public hearing on the measure for Aug. 26 in Mobile.

The notice of the FEIS for TORP’s proposal to build a deepwater LNG terminal was published in the Federal Register. Public comments on the FEIS and application are due by Sept. 22 (45 days after the notice); and federal and state agencies’ comments, recommended conditions for licensing, or letters of no objection are due by Oct. 10 (45 days after the final public hearing).

MARAD is required to issue a record of decision accepting or denying the application to build the proposed Bienville Offshore Energy Terminal by Nov. 24.

The $400 million Bienville Offshore project calls for a combined offshore receiving and regasification station 63 miles south of Mobile Point, AL, that would allow any LNG ship to offload. It would be located in the federal Outer Continental Shelf waters on Main Pass Block 258 south of Mobile Point in a water depth of approximately 425 feet.

The deepwater port would be capable of mooring two LNG carriers and processing an average of 1.2 Bcf/d. The regasified LNG would be sent through a new 30-inch undersea pipe to a support platform connected to four existing pipelines. No new onshore pipelines or LNG storage facilities are proposed. With a 30-month construction timetable the sponsors project the start-up of commercial operations in 2011, should a license be issued. The port would have an operating life of approximately 25 years.

The four interconnecting pipelines include the Dauphin Island Gathering System Feedline, the Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Feedline, the Destin Pipeline Feedline and the Viosca Knoll Gathering System Feedline.

Written comments should include the docket number USCG-2006-24644, and be mailed to the Department of Transportation, Docket Management Facility, 1200 New Jersey Av. SE, West Building, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001. They can be faxed to (202) 493-2251 or sent electronically at For further information, contact Hannah Kim at (202) 372-1438.

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