Norway’s Equinor pushes back Hammerfest LNG restart to May 27

Norwegian energy group Equinor has again delayed the restart of its 4.3 mtpa Hammerfest LNG export plant, following a fire that broke out at the facility in September 2020.

Equinor said last week that it would delay the planned restart of the facility until May 23 due to a “minor fault” on a compressor.

However, according to data by Gassco, Equinor now expects to bring back the LNG plant online on May 27.

Gassco did not provide the reason for the new delay.

An Equinor spokesperson told LNG Prime in emailed comments on Monday that the firm had completed works on the compressor, but “some final tests are remaining”.

“If testing goes as planned, we can resume operations on the plant tomorrow/Tuesday,” the spokesperson said, adding that the plant would produce LNG to tanks on May 27.

The 2006-built Arctic Voyager and Arctic Princess are still waiting in the vicinity of the LNG plant, according to their AIS data provided by VesselsValue.

Hammerfest LNG liquefies natural gas coming from the Snohvit field in the Barents Sea.

Gas reaches Hammerfest LNG via a 160-kilometer gas pipeline which became operational in the autumn of 2007.

Equinor is the operator of both the Snohvit field and Hammerfest LNG with a 36.8 percent stake.

Prior to the incident, the facility supplied LNG mainly to terminals in Europe but also in Asia.

(Article updated to include a statement by an Equinor spokesperson.)

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