The U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD) and Coast Guard Monday announced the availability of the final environmental review for Port Dolphin Energy LLC’s proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) deepwater port off the western coast of Florida.

Public comments on the final environmental impact statement (FEIS) are due Aug. 23. Federal and state agencies must submit comments, recommended conditions for licensing or letters of no objection by Sept. 11. Also by Sept. 11, Florida Gov. Charlie Crist may either approve, disapprove or notify MARAD of inconsistencies with state programs relating to environmental protection, land and water use, and coastal zone management for which MARAD may condition the license to make it consistent.

The deepwater LNG project would have a peak delivery capacity of 1.2 Bcf/d, according to Port Dolphin Energy, the U.S. subsidiary of Norwegian company Hoegh LNG AS. It noted that no major onshore facilities would be needed to bring the natural gas to the Florida market. The offshore terminal would be located 28 miles from the Florida coast and would not be visible from shore, the company said.

The project applications, which were filed in April 2007, propose installing two submerged turret unloading and mooring buoys to receive up to 800 MMcf/d of natural gas from LNG Shuttle and Regasification Vessels (SRV), which are designed to regasify the LNG onboard and deliver gas to a subsea pipeline; and a 42-mile offshore pipeline to bring the natural gas from the offshore facilities to Port Manatee in Tampa Bay (see Daily GPI, April 4, 2007). The pipeline would connect with Gulfstream Natural Gas System and Tampa Electric Co.

The Port Dolphin Energy deepwater port remains the only such project proposed for the Florida market. Calypso LNG LLC informed MARAD and the Coast Guard in February of its intention to withdraw its application for a deepwater port license to build an LNG facility off the southeastern coast of Florida (see Daily GPI, Feb. 27).

The announcement came a week after Crist vowed to oppose the Calypso project, which was to be located eight to 10 miles offshore Broward County northeast of Port Everglades. The explosive growth in gas shale production, which has offset the demand for LNG in the United States, also may have factored into Calypso’s decision to pull the plug on the project (see Daily GPI, Jan. 5).

Port Dolphin’s FEIS, application and comments can be viewed at under docket number USCG-2006-28532.

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