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Chevron close to first Australian LNG export

Gorgon project in Australia is the largest resource development ever in the country.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |   Jan. 15, 2016 at 9:23 AM
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PERTH, Australia, Jan. 15 (UPI) -- The Australian subsidiary of Chevron said it started cooling its liquefied natural gas systems ahead of what's expected to be the loading of its first exports.

"As the largest single-resource development in Australia's history, this is a significant milestone for Gorgon," regional managing director Roy Krzywosinski said in a statement. "Gorgon will be a long-term supplier of natural gas to our customers in the Asia-Pacific region and in Australia, delivering energy security as well as significant long-term economic benefits to Australia for decades to come."

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Chevron's Gorgon project will eventually produce 15.6 million tons of LNG per year. With the cool-down process underway, the company said the frigid temperatures needed to compress gas to liquid reduces volumes by 600 times, making LNG more economic to transport. It gives LNG more maneuverability as it avoids some of the geopolitical constraints associated with conventional pipeline networks.

Chevron in December signed a non-binding agreement with China Huadian Green Energy for the delivery of up to 1 million metric tons of LNG per year over 10 years, starting in 2020.

British energy company BP, in a much-watched annual report published in December, said it expects China will become the largest importer of energy in the world by 2035. China's Huadian Group, meanwhile, is one of the largest state-owned power companies in the country.

"Gorgon will be a long-term supplier of natural gas to our customers in the Asia-Pacific region and in Australia, delivering energy security as well as significant long-term economic benefits to Australia for decades to come," Krzywosinski said.

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