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FERC approves $10B Golden Pass LNG project in Texas

FERC granted authorization to Golden Pass Products LLC to build and operate the approximately $10 billion, 15.6 million-tonnes-per-annum LNG export terminal near Sabine Pass, Texas.

In the same Dec. 21 order, FERC also authorized affiliate Golden Pass Pipeline LLC to build a related natural gas pipeline expansion project that will make the system bidirectional and will allow it to move up to 2.5 Bcf/d of gas to the export terminal.

The developers had pressed FERC in a Nov. 8 letter for an order before the holidays, after the commission issued a positive final environmental review in July. Golden Pass applied to FERC in July 2014. The developers are awaiting authorization from the U.S. Department of Energy to export LNG to countries without free trade agreements with the U.S.

"This is an important milestone for Golden Pass and another stepping stone in the development of the US LNG industry," Charlie Riedl, executive director of the Center for Liquefied Natural Gas, said in an emailed statement. "Having waited for over two and a half years to secure its FERC approval, we hope the Department of Energy will waste no time in reviewing Golden Pass' application to export to non-FTA countries, so that the developers can move ahead with realizing this important project."

Golden Pass joins Sabine Pass LNG LP, Cameron LNG, Freeport LNG Development LP, Dominion Cove Point LNG LP, Corpus Christi Liquefaction LLC, Elba Island, Lake Charles LNG and Magnolia LNG projects as approved U.S. LNG export terminals.

The terminal will include three liquefaction trains, each with a liquefaction capacity of 5.2 million tonnes per annum. Golden Pass will also construct about 2.6 miles of 24-inch-diameter pipeline, three new compressor stations and interconnections for bidirectional transport of natural gas to and from the export terminal.

Golden Pass Products is owned by an affiliate of Qatar Petroleum and Golden Pass LNG Terminal Investments LLC, an affiliate of Exxon Mobil Corp. Golden Pass Pipeline is owned by affiliates of Qatar Petroleum, Exxon Mobil and ConocoPhillips Co. (FERC dockets CP14-517, CP14-518)