June 25–Sempra Energy is going full-speed ahead on its plans for constructing liquefied natural gas facilities, announcing Monday that two companies have formed a partnership to act as contractors for a proposed liquefaction project near Ensenada, Mexico.
Sempra LNG & Midstream selected international energy services company TechnipFMC and Nebraska-based Kiewit as the engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning contractor at the Energía Costa Azul facility in Baja California, Mexico.
The announcement comes just days after Sempra selected construction giant Bechtel as a contractor for a proposed LNG project near Port Arthur, Texas.
Along with partners from Japan and France, Sempra is already constructing the $10 billion Cameron LNG facility in Hackberry, Louisiana, that is expected to go online next year, sending LNG cargoes from the Gulf of Mexico to customers in international markets.
Should the Energía Costa Azul expansion be completed, it would enable San Diego-based Sempra to have LNG export capability on the Pacific Ocean as well. Energía Costa Azul already has an existing regasification facility.
“The (Energía Costa Azul) liquefaction project is one of three North American LNG export projects we are developing — two on the Gulf Coast and one in the Pacific Basin — to help meet global demand for LNG,” Joseph Householder, Sempra’s chief operating officer, said in a statement. “This project is an exciting part of our LNG growth strategy and geographically positioned to serve Asian natural gas markets.”
Energía Costa Azul ‘s expansion is contingent upon obtaining commitments from LNG customers, completing the required commercial agreements and securing the necessary permits and approvals, as well as “other factors associated with the investment,” Sempra said in a news release.
The market for LNG — the process in which natural gas is cooled to minus-260 degrees Fahrenheit and condensed into liquid — has boomed in recent years as U.S. producers have tapped into ever increasing amounts of gas found in shale fields.
The first U.S. export facility opened in Louisiana in 2016, the second opened in Maryland earlier this year and Sempra is among a number of companies racing to get facilities up and running. Some analysts have predicted LNG growing 4 to 5 percent a year through 2040.
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