Freeport LNG asks US FERC to restart remaining train

Freeport LNG, the operator of the three-train 15 mtpa liquefaction plant in Texas, has asked the US FERC for approval to restart and launch commercial operations of Train 1.

Earlier this month, the LNG terminal operator shipped the first cargo from its LNG export plant in Texas since the shutdown in June last year onboard the 2008-built 155,000-cbm LNG carrier, Kmarin Diamond. After that, it sent more partial LNG cargoes.

Last week, Freeport LNG secured regulatory approval to launch commercial operations of two trains, Train 2 and Train 3, at its liquefaction plant in Texas as part of the restart process.

It said at the time that the restart and return to service of Freeport LNG’s remaining liquefaction train will require subsequent regulatory approval once the LNG terminal operator meets certain operational conditions.

Train 3 in full production, Train 2 restarting

Freeport LNG said in a filling with the FERC dated February 26 that Train 3 had been restarted and is in full, commercial operations and production of LNG, while Train 2 “is safely continuing through its restart activities.”

“At this time, and as requested by FERC as a condition to request the reinstatement of service of Train 1, Freeport has performed a full pre-startup safety review (PSSR) of Train 1 (Unit 11), identified and completed corrective work necessary to be able to safely restart the unit, and is ready to commence activities to safely restart Train 1 (beginning with re-inventorying Train 1 with refrigerants),” the firm said.

Given the foregoing, Freeport requests authorization from the US FERC to progress to the full, commercial operations of Train 1 and Phase I.

Phase I operation is comprised of the operation of all three LNG liquefaction trains, two LNG storage tanks, and one LNG loading dock.

According to Freeport LNG, Tanks 1 and 2 have continued in operation throughout our recovery of the June 8th incident, safely maintaining LNG inventory that was within the facility at the time of the incident.

Dock 1 and LNG Loop 1 have been fully reinstated and are loading cargoes with LNG produced from Train 3, it said.

More approvals

Freeport LNG noted that any authorization pursuant to this request will be limited to Phase I operations and will not extend to utilizing Loop 2 for LNG circulation, Dock 2 to perform loading activities, or Tank 3 for the storage of LNG.

The firm will need subsequent approvals to fully reinstate Loop 2, Dock 2, and Tank 3.

“Given the close coordination that Freeport, PHMSA and FERC continue to maintain, Freeport would greatly appreciate FERC’s response to this request on March 1, 2023,” it said.

BP, Jera, Osaka Gas, SK E&S, and TotalEnergies have long-term contracts with Freeport LNG.

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