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    US Regulator Approves Jordan Cove LNG Project

Summary

Project awaits resolution of Oregon state water quality certifications

by: Dale Lunan

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US Regulator Approves Jordan Cove LNG Project

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Ferc), voting notationally on March 19 due to the cancellation of the commission’s regular meeting, has approved Pembina Pipeline’s controversial Jordan Cove LNG project and the accompanying Pacific Connector natural gas pipeline.

It is the first ever approval by the commission of a US west coast LNG export project, and comes despite significant environmental opposition and difficulties acquiring critical state permits.

“We appreciate Ferc's science-based approach to their review,” Harry Andersen, Pembina’s senior vice president and chief legal officer, said in a statement. “The approval emphasises yet again that Jordan Cove is environmentally responsible and is a project that should be permitted given a prudent regulatory and legal process was undertaken.”

The project includes a 7.5mn mt/yr liquefaction and export terminal on the shores of Oregon’s Coos Bay and the 229-mile Pacific Connector pipeline, which would deliver feed gas – sourced from Canada or the US Rockies region – to the terminal from the Malin Hub in southern Oregon.

Calgary-based Pembina Pipeline acquired Jordan Cove in 2017 as part of its acquisition of Veresen, and since then has been working to obtain extensive local, state and federal regulatory approvals. All 14 required permits from local counties and cities have been received, but the project has not yet received a critical water quality certification from the state of Oregon.

Pembina has yet to make a final investment decision on the estimated US$10bn project, and said in May 2019 it would slow work on Jordan Cove while it sought federal and state approvals.