LNG terminal approval seen as help for Piceance

Approval of a terminal by which liquefied natural gas could be shipped from an Oregon port promises a market expansion that could pump new life into production from the Piceance Basin.

The U.S. Department of Energy on Monday approved a permit for the export of natural gas from a terminal at Jordan Cove in Coos Bay.

The project is particularly valuable to producers in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, which can ship to the terminal using an existing pipeline, according to the Western Energy Alliance.

“When it comes to LNG exports, a rising tide literally helps all ships, no matter where in the country natural gas is actually produced from,” said David Ludlam, executive director of the West Slope Colorado Oil and Gas Association.

The approval was expected, said Kelly Flenniken, executive director of the Grand Junction Economic Partnership, who said she hoped it would “help push things a little faster.”

GJEP and Colorado Mesa University are working on a joint report on the value of the vast natural gas reserves in the Piceance Basin to the regional economy, a project supported by U.S. Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., who welcomed the permit approval.

“This new terminal — and others in the pipeline — will strengthen Colorado’s economy, support job creators across the nation, and ensure our bountiful and clean-burning natural gas assets can help promote global security,” Udall said in a statement.

The $7.5 billion Jordan Cove Energy Project is scheduled to begin this year and be complete in late 2017, when it will export 800 million cubic feet per day of natural gas.


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