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Manatee County approves offshore Port Dolphin LNG facility

Christopher E. Smith
OGJ Pipeline Editor

HOUSTON, Mar. 24 -- The Manatee County Port Authority Mar. 18 approved a long-term $30 million agreement with Port Dolphin Energy LLC for construction of an LNG port facility and pipeline off Florida. Port Dolphin is a subsidiary of Hoegh LNG, which operates a fleet of five LNG carriers. Port Dolphin will also base an operations center at Port Manatee.

The proposed project will consist of:

• Two submerged turret unloading and mooring buoys for receiving gas from Hoegh’s vessels.

• A 42-mile offshore pipeline for transportation of gas from the offshore terminal to Port Manatee in Tampa Bay.

• A 6-mile onshore pipeline connection to the Florida gas network.

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved construction of the onshore pipeline in December 2009 (OGJ Online, Dec. 7, 2009).

Construction is to begin in 2012 with completion in 2013. The terminal would lie 28 miles off Tampa Bay and use LNG carriers specially designed to regasify LNG for shipment through the pipeline.

Port Dolphin will have peak sendout capacity of as much as 1.2 bcfd of gas.

The FERC order followed approval of Port Dolphin by the US Maritime Administration and US Coast Guard (OGJ Online, Nov. 3, 2009). And that action followed formal approval of the proposed project in September 2009 by Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.

Port Dolphin officials estimate the project will generate more than $150 million in direct economic impact within Manatee County during the next 20 years.

Contact Christopher E. Smith at chriss@ogjonline.com.


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