Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC)Plaquemines LNG will be regulated principally by FERC. On June 18, 2015, Plaquemines LNG initiated its pre-filing request with FERC, setting in motion the environmental review process for the project.
On July 2, 2015, FERC accepted the pre-filing request made by Plaquemines LNG. On February 28, 2017, Venture Global Plaquemines LNG and Gator Express Pipeline, LLC filed a joint application with FERC requesting authorization to site, construct and operate (i) Plaquemines’s proposed natural gas liquefaction and export terminal and (ii) Gator Express Pipeline’s proposed natural gas pipeline that will connect the Plaquemines LNG terminal to the U.S. natural gas grid. These developments are subject to the jurisdiction of FERC under the Natural Gas Act. FERC issued a formal notice of the applications and assigned the docket numbers CP17-66 and CP17-67 to these applications, which can be found and read in full at FERC’s website.
In September 2015, Plaquemines LNG hosted two open house events — in Plaquemines Parish and Jefferson Parish, Louisiana — as part of FERC’s pre-filing process. The informal meetings provided community members, local elected leaders, and community and economic development officials with an opportunity to provide input and learn more about the project. Topics included economic projections, local job creation, environmental considerations, and timelines and hiring.
In October 2015, FERC hosted a Scoping Meeting in Plaquemines Parish with Venture Global leadership. Venture Global team members, elected officials, and parish residents attended the meeting to learn about the project and provide formal comments. Leaders who provided supportive, on-the-record commentary regarding Plaquemines LNG included: Councilwoman Audrey Trufant-Salvant; Parish President Amos Cormier; Plaquemines Parish Port and Harbor Terminal District Executive Director Sandy Sanders; Plaquemines Association of Business and Industry (PABI) Chairwoman Denise Buford; and Ryan Bourriaque, parish administrator for southwestern Louisiana’s Cameron Parish, the location of Venture Global’s Calcasieu Pass project.
In January 2017, the U.S. Coast Guard, Captain of the Port, Sector New Orleans provided a Letter of Recommendation (LOR) to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regarding the proposed Plaquemines LNG terminal. Specifically, the LOR states that the lower Mississippi River is suitable for the LNG marine traffic associated with this project.
The LOR process is a lengthy and comprehensive review of the LNG carrier transit route relating to the maritime safety and security of the associated waterway and surrounding community. Several elements such as existing marine traffic, vessel maneuverability, and potential threats were thoroughly analyzed by a combined team of U.S. Coast Guard, state and local law enforcement, emergency response personnel, river pilots, and other maritime stakeholders. Further, the Associated Branch Pilots and Crescent River Port Pilots verified the suitability of the river for LNG traffic in a complex series of marine bridge simulator runs.
Regulatory Permits and ApprovalsOther agencies with regulating authority include the U.S. Dept. of Transportation, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, and various other agencies of the state of Louisiana and Plaquemines and Jefferson Parishes.
Plaquemines LNG has received authorization from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to export up to twenty four million (24,000,000) metric tonnes of LNG per year to free trade agreement (FTA) nations, and the application for export to non-FTA nations is pending. Further information on this approval process can be found at the DOE’s Office of Fossil Energy.
FERC has additional information on LNG terminal permitting processes as well as resources for community stakeholders and neighbors.