A liquefied natural gas export terminal under construction in Plaquemines Parish has received a preliminary environmental greenlight to proceed with a planned output expansion.
The FERC has released an environmental assessment that weighs the pros and cons of allowing Plaquemines LNG to push its annual output from 24 million metric tons to 27.2 million.
FERC had already approved the facility’s construction, which began in August 2021. Last year, Venture Global LNG, the terminal’s parent company, filed an application asking for FERC’s blessing to expand the terminal’s export capacity to meet market demand.
“We have determined that if Plaquemines LNG operates the proposed Amendment in accordance with its application and supplements, approval of the Amendment would not constitute a major federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment,” the assessment says.
Environmental justice groups had opposed the expansion, citing concerns about the project’s potential impact on air and water quality and climate change, among other issues.
Though the environmental assessment does not reflect a final decision from FERC on the expansion — the full commission still needs to OK it — the document shows federal regulators appear to be willing to let it keep moving forward.
Venture Global LNG sewed up a $13.2 billion financing package in May. The terminal is expected to come online by 2024.