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The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has given Freeport LNG Development, L.P. the approval it requested to restart some operations, a regulatory filing from Thursday shows.
“I grant your request for Freeport LNG Development, L.P. (Freeport LNG) to commence commissioning, including cooldown, of Loop 1 LNG transfer piping and commissioning and reinstate service of the boil off gas (BOG) management system,” the FERC’s Office of Energy Project letter said.
“This approval is based on a review of the written request and data request responses filed on December 21 and 23, 2022 and January 4, 10, 12, 13, 17, 19, 20, 23, 24 and 26, 2023 and previous submittals filed in response to certain actions taken to address the root and contributing causes identified as a result of the June 8, 2022 incident. This approval is also based on the items inspected and discussed during the joint Commission and Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) site visit, which took place on January 25, 2023.”
Refnitiv flows data showed earlier in the day that small volumes of natural gas began to flow through to the Freeport LNG export Terminal. Still, those flows only amount to a fraction of the pipeline gas going to the facility when it is fully operational.
Repairs have been completed at Freeport LNG for days, after being offline for seven months. Some analysts suspect, however, that Freeport LNG will be unable to restart until March. Freeport LNG declined to comment on this speculation.
Freeport LNG is standing by its restart timeline, set for the second half of this month, a company spokesperson told Oilprice.com earlier this month.
When operations at Freeport LNG went down in June, the call for LNG exports was high as Europe struggled to build up its gas stores for this winter. Gas prices have since eased, slacking off for four days straight, as traders eye warm weather ahead, combined with fat energy stores and the prospect of additional LNG from the United States.
By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com
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Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for Oilprice.com, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group.
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