Upstream: G2 LNG relaunches with net-zero goal, will seek new permit

19 June 2020 6:09 GMT

By Caroline Evans


Developers of a long-planned US liquefied natural gas export terminal in Louisiana have relaunched the project with an ambitious goal: to be the first net-zero carbon emissions LNG facility in the world.

They will restart the process of getting a permit from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission early next year, after exiting the federal permitting process in 2017 as competition had stacked up in the US LNG sector, the project’s chairman Charles Roemer IV said last week.

“I didn’t see that we had an inherent advantage in the market,” Roemer said in a 19 June webinar hosted by the Atlantic Council, a think tank focused on international affairs. “I didn’t see that the market was actually moving in our direction.”

Now, the LNG project has been redesigned and rebranded as G2 Net-Zero LNG. The net-zero concept gives the project a competitive advantage in a world where cleaner energy is expected to be in high demand in the coming years, he said.

‘From wellhead to dock’

The $11 billion facility will include 10 small-scale trains of 1.3 million tonnes per annum each, for total capacity of 13 million tpa, according to the project’s website.

If approved by regulators, Roemer said the greenfield project would be built on a 1266-acre site on the Calcasieu Ship Channel, close to existing pipeline infrastructure to feed the facility.

To achieve its goal of net-zero emissions “from wellhead to dock”, the project is relying on a number of partners. Technology specialists 8 Rivers and NET Power will provide the engine for the G2 terminal, Roemer said.

“They have technology that allows us to take natural gas, generate electricity, capture those emissions simultaneously, remove all the emissions and generate enough excess electricity so we can then run our LNG facility,” he said.

But Consultancy Ming Energy Partners determined 85% of upstream and midstream emissions could be captured, leaving a “small component” for a carbon offset, Roemer said.

A final component would involve providing end users with technology that would lower their emissions when the product leaves the facility.

The G2 team has also brought on other partners, including Siemens to provide gas turbines and compressors, and KBR to carry out front-end engineering and design, plant study and engineering, procurement and construction work.

In addition, Roemer said he consulted with former US Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz and environmental groups over the course of the redesign.

Profitable and clean

Roemer expects LNG demand in general will pick up in the coming years, but anticipates the demand for cleaner products to be even stronger.

“We are getting a lot of interest from Europe, we’re getting a lot of interest from around the world,” he said. “And to me, that’s a testimony to the demand in the world for clean energy. So we are entertaining a number of groups. Some I would call strategic partners; some I would say are strictly financial advisors.”

Roemer also expects G2 to be competitive from a cost standpoint, as it will be able to sell carbon products that it has captured. He sees that adding up to an additional $400 million in revenue that can be applied to per-unit costs of the LNG cargoes.

“I end up with a net-zero LNG product that’s also less expensive than my competitors,” he said.

Louisiana legacy

The original G2 LNG project was hatched by Roemer’s father, Buddy Roemer, who was Louisiana’s governor from 1988 to 1992 and was a US presidential candidate in 2012.

The younger Roemer is president and chairman of investment firm RRM. He also has had a political career, and served two terms as an elected member on the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education from 2007 to 2015.

Roemer established RRM in 2008, and his father is listed on the firm’s website as a co-founder.(Copyright)

Nash Sanderson