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NextDecade’s Rio Grande LNG project approved by FERC

Rio Grande LNG project : NextDecade has been issued an order from the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) which authorizes the siting, construction and operation of the Rio Grande liquefied natural gas export facility (Rio Grande LNG export project) in Brownsville, Texas and the associated Rio Bravo Pipeline.

The Rio Grande LNG facility is a natural gas liquefaction and export facility, which is proposed to be developed with an investment of $9.56bn. To be developed in multiple phases, the Rio Grande LNG project will have an overall capacity of 27 million tons per annum (mtpa).

Currently, the US LNG development company expects to wrap up key commercial milestones during Q4 2019 and Q1 2020 before taking the expected final investment decision (FID) in Q1 2020.

Construction on the Rio Grande LNG project is likely to begin shortly after taking the FID with commercial operations scheduled for late 2023.

Commenting on the FERC approval for the Rio Grande LNG export project, Matt Schatzman – NextDecade Chairman and CEO said: “Issuance of the FERC order marks an extremely important milestone for our project.

“We appreciate the comprehensive and rigorous review of our project conducted by the FERC and numerous other federal, state and local agencies over the last four and a half years.”

NextDecade Rio Grande LNG project in Texas.

NextDecade Rio Grande LNG project in Texas. Photo courtesy of Business Wire.

In May 2019, Bechtel was awarded the engineering, procurement, and construction contract (EPC contract) for the first phase of the Rio Grande LNG export project.

Phase 1 of the Rio Grande LNG project will feature three liquefication trains, a couple of storage tanks with 180,000 cubic meters capacity each, and also two marine berths. An additional storage tank and LNG truck loading facilities are also likely to be accommodated in the first phase of the Rio Grande LNG export project.

Recently, NextDecade secured an investment of $50 million from Abu Dhabi based state-owned investor Mubadala Investment Company for a minority stake in the former. The investment from Mubadala Investment Company will further boost the capital position of NextDecade in advancing the Rio Grande LNG project.

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