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First cargo leaves APLNG’s Curtis Island plant

Published by
World Coal,

Australian Pacific LNG (APLNG) has commenced operations with its first LNG cargo departing from its LNG facility on Curtis Island, new Gladstone in the Australian state of Queensland. The LNG vessel Methane Spirit departed the facility on 9 January and marked the end of over four years of planning and construction.

“This achievement is testament to an extraordinary amount of work completed by co-venturers, Origin Energy, ConocoPhillips and Sinopec, a multitude of key contractors, including Bechtel, and a 15 000 strong workforce,” said APLNG CEO, Page Maxson. “In addition, we are thankful for the ongoing support from all of our stakeholders, including local, state and federal governments, landholders and community members.”

APLNG expects to reach full production from two LNG trains on Curtis Island by the end of 2016. “We are delighted to be part of the establishment of the CSG-LNG industry in Queensland, one that will continue for many decades and provide economic opportunities across the state,” concluded Maxson.

Origin Managing Director, Grant King, also welcomed the departure of the first cargo, calling it a “landmark moment”. Origin owns a 37.5% stake in APLNG and is responsible for the upstream sourcing of the coal seam gas (CSG, also known as coalbed methane) that feeds the plant, as well as the main gas transmission pipeline.

At full capacity, APLNG’s two train LNG production facility will supply 9 million tpa of LNG to export markets.

The Queensland natural gas industry has seen AUS$70 billion of investment and contributed AUS$22.1 billion to the state economy in 2014 – 2015, according to Queensland Resources Council CEO, Michael Roche, who called the sector a “vital and growing pillar for Queensland’s economy”.

“As organisations such as APLNG continue to achieve these significant milestones, Australian will remain on track to become the world’s leading exporter of natural gas by 2020 – with Queensland amongst those leading the pack,” Roche concluded.

The shipment of the first cargo from APLNG is also a significant moment for Bechtel, the contractor responsible for all three LNG plants on Curtis island.

“The simultaneous work on the three giant plants constitutes the greatest concentration of greenfields construction for Becthel anywhere in the world,” said Alasdair Cathcart, General Manager of Bechtel’s LNG business line. “With all three plants now producing LNG, we are proud of the significant role Bechtel colleagues are playing in bringing Queensland’s cleaner energy resources to the world.”

In November, Bechtel handed over operational control of the Queensland Curtis LNG plant to QGC, while in October the Santos GLNG project produced its first cargo.

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