AGL scraps Crib Point LNG import project
Australia's gas and power retailer AGL Energy on May 3 said it would stop any further development of the proposed LNG import jetty at Crib Point. This comes just a month after the government of the state of Victoria had blocked the project on environmental grounds.
Victorian planning minister Richard Wynne in late March said that discharges from the project will have “unacceptable” effects on the local environment, including a nearby wetland of international significance.
“AGL takes its environmental obligations seriously and works cooperatively with all regulatory agencies to ensure we meet all regulatory requirements and engage with the communities where we operate, so as to respond to their concerns,” the company said.
AGL previously estimated the total committed on the project at A$130mn ($100mn). Of this amount, A$22mn has been expensed to date, it added. As a result, AGL expects to recognise a pre-tax loss of up to A$108mn in fiscal 2021.
There are other companies interested in setting up import terminals in the state. Another Australian company, Viva Energy, is planning a terminal at Geelong. Netherland’s Vopak recently said it is also looking to develop an LNG import terminal in the state.
Energy consultancy EnergyQuest October last year said that states on the Australian east coast, especially Victoria, will need to import LNG to bridge the expected supply shortfall. Victorian gas demand, the largest on the east coast, is supplied from fields offshore Victoria that also meet Tasmanian demand and a substantial proportion of gas for New South Wales and South Australia. Victoria’s fields are on the brink of decline, EnergyQuest said.