Sempra eyes Cameron LNG expansion FID in 2023

US LNG player Sempra is expecting to take a final investment decision to expand its Cameron LNG export plant in Louisiana in 2023.

Last month, the company’s unit Sempra Infrastructure entered into a heads of agreement with its partners in Cameron LNG. The firms include affiliates of TotalEnergies, Mitsui & Co. and Japan LNG Investment, a company jointly owned by Mitsubishi Corporation and NYK.

Additionally, Cameron LNG awarded two front-end engineering design (FEED) contracts to Bechtel and a joint venture between JGC America and Zachry Industrial.

Sempra expects the FEED process to conclude in the summer of 2023, resulting in better scope, definition, cost and schedule for the project.

Sempra holds 50.2 percent of Cameron LNG, the operator of the existing three-train 12 mtpa liquefaction facility.

The Cameron LNG Phase 2 export project includes buidling the fourth train with a capacity of about 6.75 mtpa.

Besides the additional train, the expansion also includes debottlenecking of the existing three LNG trains and design enhancements such as electric turbines.

US LNG supplies to Europe have been constantly rising this year due to high gas prices and as European countries look to slash reliance on Russian gas.

The Cameron LNG expansion project could supply both customers in Europe and Asia.

“Look, we’re very excited about the Cameron Phase 2 project. There was a flurry of activity in the first quarter that I think gives us a lot more confidence today about that project’s ability to move forward,” Sempra’s CEO Jeff Martin told analysts during the company’s first-quarter conference call on Thursday.

“So right now, we’re estimating that, that EPC work will come together in the summer of 2023, and soon thereafter, we’ll take FID,” he said.

Mexico LNG projects progress

Besides the Cameron LNG expansion, Sempra continues to work on its planned Vista Pacífico LNG export project in Mexico’s Topolobampo, but the company’s main focus is to complete the Costa Azul LNG export plant in the country.

Sempra took FID on ECA LNG Phase 1 in November 2020. The $2 billion project includes one train with a capacity of about 3.25 mtpa.

Justin Bird, CEO of Sempra Infrastructure, said during the call that the project “is on time and on budget”.

“Technip is doing a great job there and we have achieved over one million work hours without a recordable safety incident,” he said.

According to Bird, the project remains on track to begin producing LNG by the end of 2024.

Sempra is also looking to build the second phase of this project with a capacity of up to 12 mtpa.

“We think this is a project that will make sense. And we’re working on looking at opportunities there to bring in gas and to optimize the design of that project,” Bird said.

In addition to these developments, Sempra is in talks on its planned Port Arthur liquefaction project in Texas with a 13.5 mtpa capacity.

“Because of its scale and advanced permitting status, we’re seeing a significant renewed interest in Port Arthur, and we’re advancing commercial discussions with a number of partners and key offtakers,” Bird said.

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