Tellurian on track to start construction on $27B Louisiana LNG terminal
- Energy company Tellurian announced during its third-quarter earnings call last week that it expects to begin construction on its $27.5 billion Driftwood LNG (liquefied natural gas) export terminal on the Calcasieu River near Lake Charles, Louisiana, sometime in the first half of 2019. The facility expects to be able to produce LNG by 2023.
- The company said there were approximately 35 potential customers that wanted to strike deals with Tellurian for partnerships interests in the purchase of LNG and Driftwood Holdings, the company's wholly owned subsidiary, that will build and operate the terminal, as well as Tellurian's gas-producing assets and pipeline assets. The company intends to release the names of the partners by the end of this year. Tellurian also reported that in September it received its draft environmental impact statement (EIS) from the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for the terminal and related pipeline, with the final EIS expected in January.
- The Driftwood terminal, according to Reuters, is one of many LNG projects awaiting customer partnerships so that they can begin construction and start providing natural gas in a time of increased global demand. Existing LNG facilities combined with those under construction are expected to boost LNG export capacity from 3.8 billion cubic feet per day to 5.2 billion cfpd by the end of 2018 and then grow to 8.9 billion cfpd by the end of 2019 and 10.3 billion by the end of 2020.
Tellurian already has a construction expert at its side. Not only did Tellurian award Bechtel with $15.2 billion of engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts for the Driftwood terminal in November 2017, but a Bechtel affiliate invested $50 million into Tellurian last March. Bechtel, according to Tellurian, has delivered 41 LNG trains around the world, and Bechtel-built facilities make up approximately one-third of global LNG capacity.
Bechtel also has other multibillion-dollar LNG projects underway. Bechtel figured into two of the biggest. In June, San Diego-based Sempra Energy selected Bechtel to help develop an approximately $9 billion LNG plant in Port Arthur, Texas, by providing EPC and commissioning services. Sempra's project will include two liquefaction trains, feed gas pre-treatment facilities, natural gas liquids and refrigerant storage, up to three LNG storage tanks and two marine berths.
Also in June, Bechtel received a notice to proceed with full construction for Cheniere Energy's $11 billion Corpus Christi Liquefaction facility in Corpus Christi, Texas. Bechtel's EPC contract includes the construction of a new LNG train, an LNG tank, the completion of a second LNG loading berth and existing construction of two LNG trains, two tanks, and a docking facility.
Follow Kim Slowey on Twitter