US Regulator Approves Alaska LNG Project
The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Ferc) has approved Alaska Gasline Development Corp’s (AGDC) proposed 20mn mt/yr Alaska LNG project, it announced May 21.
The approval came in the form of a Section 3 Natural Gas Act authorisation, with conditions. The Ferc did not detail what those conditions were, although the project – which includes an 807-mile, 3.9bn ft3/day pipeline from Alaska’s North Slope to the Kenai Peninsula, where the liquefaction terminal would be located – has met with stiff environmental opposition.
And AGDC – an independent, public corporation of the State of Alaska – has not been able to find a suitable partner, or partners, for the estimated $43bn project.
“Today’s federal authorisation is a key step in determining if Alaska LNG is competitive and economically beneficial for Alaska,” Alaska governor Mike Dunleavy said. “The ongoing project economic review and discussions with potential partners will determine the next steps for this project.”
AGDC president Frank Richards said Ferc’s approval was critical in finding partners because it validates that the project can be built safely and with manageable environmental impacts.
“Obtaining Ferc approval significantly de-risks the project execution with defined environmental stipulations,” he said. “Our momentum continues as we complete our assessment of the project’s economics and competitiveness, and engage with potential project partners to determine the best path forward for the Alaska LNG project.”
The US Department of Energy has approved the export of 20mn mt/yr of LNG from the terminal to countries with free trade agreements with the US, and conditional export authorisations for a similar volume to non-FTA countries.