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Cheniere to tag LNG cargoes with emissions data to aid buyers' environmental goals


European utilities under pressure over US shale

Full-service platform gives exporter unique window

  • Author
  • Harry Weber
  • Editor
  • Debiprasad Nayak
  • Commodity
  • LNG Natural Gas
  • Topic
  • Energy Transition Environment and Sustainability

Cheniere will give its LNG customers emissions data associated with each cargo it produces at its two US export terminals, in a bid to make its environmental footprint more transparent at a time of increasing pressure on buyers to reduce their shale consumption.

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As the biggest US LNG exporter, Cheniere is a major buyer of physical gas that it uses in the liquefaction process. Much of the gas is drilled in shale basins stretching from the US Gulf Coast to the Northeast to Western Canada.

Amid the energy transition to greater use of renewables and cleaner burning fuels, France's Engie said in November 2020 that it had halted talks with NextDecade about a supply deal tied to the developer's proposed Rio Grande LNG facility in Texas. With strict carbon emissions goals, European utilities are being pressured to shy away from signing new deals for importing US shale gas.

RELATED: Cheniere eyes contracting lift at US terminals from global LNG market volatility

While Engie's reported decision did not drive the carbon emissions data initiative that Cheniere announced Feb. 24, Cheniere's effort is aligned with Europe's goals, Chief Commercial Officer Anatol Feygin said in an interview with S&P Global Platts.

"We view LNG as a long-term solution for decades to come in partnership with renewables and as a way for our counterparties to achieve their environmental objectives," Feygin said. "In order to do that, we have to be more efficient and improve our CO2 e-footprint."

Cheniere operates liquefaction terminals at Sabine Pass in Louisiana and near Corpus Christi in Texas.

It plans to provide customers with cargo emissions tags associated with each LNG cargo produced at the terminals. The tags are designed to quantify the estimated greenhouse gas emissions of LNG cargoes from the wellhead to the cargo delivery point. Cheniere expects to begin providing the data to customers in 2022.

In putting together the cargo emissions data, Cheniere will utilize publicly available data from market participants, as well as operational data from both the Sabine Pass and Corpus Christi facilities.

"We are in the unique position of being in control of that value chain, contrary to other projects that are tollers," Feygin said. "We actually procure the gas, schedule it, transport it. We know exactly where it is at all times."