A Kinder Morgan Inc. (KMI) affiliate has asked federal regulators for permission to bring into service a fourth liquefied natural gas (LNG) production unit at the Elba Island Liquefaction project in Georgia.
In a letter to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Monday, Elba Liquefaction Co. LLC, Kinder’s joint venture with EIG Global Energy Partners, said the Movable Modular Liquefaction System No. 2 facilities would be ready for service on Thursday (Jan. 16). The first, third and fourth trains already are operating, with the first cargo from Unit 1 exported last month.
All 10 of the 0.3 million metric tons/year units at the terminal near Savannah, GA, are expected to enter service by the end of the summer.
The fourth train’s projected ramp up comes as feed gas deliveries to Lower 48 export facilities have taken a hit after establishing fresh record highs. Genscape Inc.’s estimate of feed gas flows for Monday set a record high by getting within inches of 8.8 Bcf/d, but Tuesday’s volumes retreated nearly 0.7 Bcf/d, primarily from deliveries to Cheniere Energy Inc.’s Sabine Pass facility in Louisiana dropping to an 18-day low.
Russia’s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to move supply into Europe has been delayed because of recent U.S. sanctions. The 1.9 Tcf/year pipeline eventually will be completed, but the delay could limit growth in Europe’s imports from Russia this year, according to EBW Analytics Group.
“That, in turn, could provide some headroom for U.S. LNG shipments and help soak up a global supply glut, although European inventories remain very well-stocked so incremental demand is likely to be modest overall,” the firm said.
KMI also has sold all of the roughly 25 million shares of Pembina Pipeline Corp. stock received from selling the Canadian company the U.S. segment of the cross-border liquids pipe, Cochin Pipeline. Proceeds are to be used to pay down debt.
During KMI’s third quarter earnings call, management had indicated it was targeting growing dividend payments this year and investing $2.4 billion in expansions and joint ventures. KMI’s 4Q2019 earnings call is set for Jan. 22.
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