EIA: Three U.S. LNG projects advanced to construction phase in ‘23

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports that developers advanced three liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects to the construction phase in 2023, following the signing of sale and purchase agreements (SPA) that underpin the projects. Developers signed contracts with buyers for almost 22 million metric tons per year of LNG last year, or about 3 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of natural gas, according to data from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and from company websites. The volumes contracted in 2023 totaled 52% less than the contracted volumes in SPAs signed in 2022.

The final investment decisions (FID) for these projects came before DOE paused review of LNG export permits to countries with which the United States does not have a free trade agreement. All the projects that reached FID in 2023 already had export approvals from DOE.

Venture Global began construction of Phase 2 of the Plaquemines export facility in Louisiana. In Texas, Sempra began construction on the first phase of its Port Arthur project, and NextDecade began construction of the first phase of the Rio Grande project. The in-service date of these projects under construction ranges from third-quarter 2024 to 2027.

About three-quarters of the volumes in the 2023 SPAs had a contract duration of 20 years, beginning when the project starts commercial operations; the earliest start date would be the third quarter of 2024.

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