Floating Florida LNG terminal moves closer to reality

Warren R. True
Chief Technology Editor-LNG/Gas Processing

HOUSTON, Nov. 3 -- A Gulf of Mexico offshore LNG terminal took a major step towards reality Nov. 2 when acting Maritime Administrator David T. Matsuda approved its construction off western Florida.

The approval was expected after Port Dolphin Energy LLC announced last week it had signed a “record of decision” in its application for a license to build the deepwater LNG port.

The signing, according to the announcement by the company, “paves the way to the awarding of a deepwater port license” to be issued by the US Maritime Administration. It marked the “successful completion of a comprehensive environmental impact statement” directed by the US Coast Guard and formal approval [in September] by Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.

As part of the approval agreement, Port Dolphin Energy agreed to employ and train American mariners on ships using the port.

Port Dolphin will be about 28 miles southwest of Tampa Bay. At full capacity, sometime in 2013, the system will deliver about 400 MMcfd into Florida markets; at peak it will be able to deliver up to 1.2 bcfd. It is a subsidiary of Hoegh LNG, which develops floating LNG terminals.

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