Port NOLA produces international supply chain solution; INEOS green lights PAO plant in Texas; US LNG export capacity to soar by 2019

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The top side deck piece of an oil platform, manufactured by Chet Morrison Contractors, is discharged from barge onto the Intermarine Edge by terminal operator Coastal Cargo at the Harmony Street Wharf at Port NOLA. Photo: Coastal Cargo

Port of New Orleans moves pre-fab modules to Carribbean

The second of five heavy-lift project module pieces manufactured in Louisiana was recently exported through the Port of New Orleans to the Carribbean, bringing together three New Orleans-based entities on an international supply chain solution.  

Port NOLA is partnering with Intermarine, a New Orleans-based shipping company, and Chet Morrison Contractors, a Harvey-based land and marine construction company, to export five shipments of locally manufactured oil platform components to Trinidad through 2019.

The first piece, the base of an oil platform built by Chet Morrison Contractors, arrived at Port NOLA by barge at the Poland Avenue wharf and was discharged directly from barge to the Intermarine Industrial Edge by terminal operator Coastal Cargo in August.

The second piece, the top side deck also built by Chet Morrison Contractors, arrived by barge at the Harmony Street wharf and was also discharged directly from barge to the Intermarine Industrial Edge by Coastal Cargo last month.

“Working hand in hand with our local resources we were able to identify cost savings for the transport of pre-fabricated modules from our Harvey facility to the project location in the Caribbean,” said Brent Desselle, Chet Morrison Contractors Project Manager.

Both oil platform components arrived in Trinidad and were successfully discharged. The next project will commence loading in March 2018 with the same two components.

INEOS green lights PAO plant in Texas

INEOS Oligomers announced it has made the Final Investment Decision (FID) to build a new world scale, low viscosity Polyalphaolefin (PAO) unit on the INEOS site at Chocolate Bayou, TX.

This unit will have a capacity of 120,000 tonnes/year, and become the world’s largest single PAO train. The plant is scheduled to start-up in the third quarter of 2019. The new PAO unit will obtain its feedstock from the adjacent Linear Alpha Olefin (LAO) plant, which is currently under construction at the same site.  

This investment represents a major step forward in the ambitious growth plans for the INEOS Oligomers PAO business, complementing existing units in La Porte, TX and Feluy, Belgium.

“The industry needs an ample supply of high quality base oils, such as PAO, to formulate the next generation of advanced lubricant products. INEOS is making the commitment to invest close to a billion dollars, in both PAO capacity and the necessary LAO feedstock supply, to ensure PAO is a viable and secure long term formulation option for our customers” said Bob Learman, INEOS Oligomers CEO. 

US LNG exports growing as new facilities come online

US liquified natural gas export capacity will grow by more than 200% by 2019.  In August 2017, total U.S. natural gas liquefaction capacity in the Lower 48 states increased to 2.8 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) following the completion of the fourth liquefaction unit at the Sabine Pass liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Louisiana, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

Image: EIA

With increasing liquefaction capacity and utilization, U.S. LNG exports averaged 1.9 Bcf/d, and capacity utilization averaged 80% this year, based on data through November.

Sabine Pass, located on the U.S. Gulf Coast near the Louisiana-Texas border, consists of four existing natural gas liquefaction units, or trains, with a fifth train currently under construction. When complete, Sabine Pass will have a total liquefaction capacity of 3.5 Bcf/d.

Overall utilization of existing LNG liquefaction facilities is expected to average 80% in 2017 and 79% in 2018, based on LNG export projections in EIA’s latest Short-Term Energy Outlook. 

Five additional LNG projects are currently under construction in the U.S., and they are expected to increase total U.S. liquefaction capacity to 9.6 Bcf/d by the end of 2019:

• Cove Point liquefaction terminal (one train, 0.75 Bcf/d capacity) in Maryland is 97% complete, and Dominion Energy expects to place it in service before the end of 2017.

• Elba Island LNG (10 modular liquefaction trains, 0.03 Bcf/d capacity each) in Georgia is owned by Kinder Morgan. Six trains are scheduled to come online in the summer of 2018, and four trains are scheduled to come online by May 2019.

• Freeport LNG (three trains, 0.7 Bcf/d capacity each) in Texas is being developed by Freeport LNG Development, L.P. The first train is expected to come online in November 2018, with the remaining two trains following in six-month intervals.

• Corpus Christi (two trains, 0.6 Bcf/d capacity each) in Texas is being developed by Cheniere and is expected to come online in 2019.

• Cameron LNG (three trains, 0.6 Bcf/d capacity each) in Louisiana is being developed by Sempra LNG and is expected to come online in 2019.