Sempra Energy has received authorisation from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to site, construct, and operate a liquefaction and export facility in Hackberry, Louisiana – called Cameron LNG.

The FERC permit is one of the last major regulatory approvals required to start construction on the $9bn to $10bn natural gas liquefaction facility.

“This is a landmark project that will bring economic prosperity and create thousands of jobs in Louisiana,” said Debra L. Reed, chairman and CEO of Sempra Energy. “Today’s approval is another important step in delivering natural gas to America’s trading partners abroad.”

The authorisation approves the development of the three-train liquefaction facility that will provide an export capability of 12m tonnes per annum of LNG, or approximately 1.7bn cubic feet per day (Bcfd).  FERC also authorised a subsidiary of Sempra Energy to construct a 21-mile, 42-inch natural gas pipeline expansion of the Cameron Interstate Pipeline, new compressor station and ancillary equipment that will provide natural gas transportation for the liquefaction facilities.  

Earlier this year, Cameron LNG was awarded conditional approval from the US Department of Energy (DOE) to export LNG to non-free-trade-agreement (non-FTA) countries, including Japan and European nations.

“We are pleased to have reached this important milestone successfully and to be one step closer to starting construction later this year,” said Octavio M.C. Simoes, president of Sempra LNG. “The broad support and positive feedback from the community has been an integral part of our success in the developing and permitting of the project.”

“The liquefaction project is an international collaboration with our partners from Japan and France to create a world-class facility to deliver reliable LNG supplies for more than 20 years to some of the largest LNG buyers in the world,” said E. Scott Chrisman, vice-president of commercial development for Sempra LNG and project leader for the Cameron LNG liquefaction project.