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    Spanish LNG project secures regulatory approval


Enagas's idle LNG terminal in the Bay of Biscay could be ready in just six-to-eight months.

by: Callum Cyrus

Posted in:

NGW Interview, Natural Gas & LNG News, Europe, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), News By Country, Spain

Spanish LNG project secures regulatory approval

Enagas said July 7 it had secured Spanish ecological authorisation to deliver an up to 8mn metric tons/year LNG regasification and import terminal in the Bay of Biscay town of Gijon.

The permit from Spain's Ministry for Ecological Transition should allow Enagas to deliver first gas into the El Musel regasification facility within six-to-eight months. Enagas completed the majority of El Musel's development in 2012, but was then forced to mothball the facility due to insufficient gas demand.

Enagas says the ministry's approval was based on positive feedback on its application from Spain's National Commission on Markets & Competition (CNMC). The national commission will now look at approvals for a special economic package that Madrid has proposed for the new facility.

More than 100 LNG carriers are expected to pass through Enagas' new project each year, contributing to European security of supply at a time when customers are hard pressed to reduce their reliance on Russian gas imports. Spain already possesses the most LNG terminals of any EU country, and Gijon's location in the Bay of Biscay should allow easy access to re-export gas into western France.

The regasification terminal will have two storage tanks with a combined capacity for 300,000 m3 of LNG. It is designed to contain enough berthing and unloading space to host the world's largest LNG carriers, with a storage capacity of up to 266,000 m3.

Enagas currently runs four LNG import terminals in Spain, in Barcelona, Huelva, Cartagena and Gijon. It also has a 72.5% stake in an LNG facility in Sagunto, and a 70% shareholding in a regasification plant in Bilbao. 

The award of the ecological authorisation was marked in a formal ceremony attended by Enagas CEO Arturo Gonzalo, Spain's minister for ecological transition and demographic challenge Teresa Ribera, the president of Spain's Asturias principality Adrian Barbon, and the mayor of Gijon Ana Gonzalez.