Origin: Australia Pacific LNG deliveries impacted as tanker loses power at jetty

Deliveries from the ConocoPhillips-operated Australia Pacific LNG plant on Curtis Island have been delayed as a loaded LNG tanker docked at the terminal’s jetty had lost power and was unable to leave, according to shareholder Origin.

Origin, which is subject to a takeover offer from a consortium consisting of Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management and a unit of US-based energy investor EIG, said in a statement on Tuesday that downstream operator of APLNG, ConocoPhillips, “is working with all parties concerned, including the relevant maritime regulator and port authority, to resolve the situation.”

The firm, as upstream operator, has started turning down production to reduce the flow of gas to the LNG facility.

In addition, Origin is taking steps to bank its non-operated portfolio production and execute additional domestic gas sales, it said.

The company did not reveal the name of the vessel but its AIS data provided by VesselValue shows that the tanker in question is the 2017-built 174,100-cbm, Cesi Qingdao.

Cesi Qingdao is owned by a joint venture of MOL, Cosco Shipping, and Sinopec. It transports APLNG volumes for China’s Sinopec.

Origin currently owns a 22.5 percent in the APLNG project, while Sinopec owns a 25 percent share in the project.

US energy giant ConocoPhillips has a 47.5 percent share in the APLNG project and operates the 9 mtpa LNG export facility on Curtis Island near Gladstone.

However, ConocoPhillips revealed plans in March to become upstream operator of APLNG following the closing of EIG’s transaction with Origin, and it has also agreed to purchase up to an additional 2.49 percent shareholding interest in APLNG for $0.5 billion.

LNG cargo delays

Origin said only one LNG vessel is able to dock at the LNG facility at a time.

As a result, no other cargoes can be loaded until the situation is resolved, it said.

According to the firm, two LNG cargoes have already been deferred out of the FY2024 delivery schedule.

“It is expected that more LNG cargos will be deferred, with Australia Pacific LNG ordinarily loading a LNG vessel for export approximately every three days,” it said.

The total number of cargoes to be deferred will depend on the timeframe for resolution, Origin said.

Origin added there is no impact to domestic gas customers and the firm “will provide further updates as appropriate.”

ConocoPhillips Australia working to resolve the situation

ConocoPhillips Australia also confirmed later on Tuesday that an LNG vessel docked at the APLNG LNG facility lost power and was unable to leave the terminal as scheduled.  

The company said that there have been no injuries to personnel on the vessel or at the LNG Facility from the event.

“We have been working with the ship captain and management, local and federal regulators, and the customer to respond to this event,” it said.

The company said it has assessed and planned for scenarios to best manage the supply through the APLNG facility while the situation is being resolved—this includes deferring cargoes as required.   

“We remain focused on ensuring safe operations and continue to support the ship management with their repair plans,” ConocoPhillips Australia said.

(Updated with a statement by ConocoPhillips Australia.)

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