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Dunkirk regasification terminal starts commercial operations

04 Jan 2017 12:05 GMT

Facility is the second-largest regasification terminal in mainland Europe.



Commercial operations at the new Dunkirk regasification terminal commenced on 1st January.

The facility, owned by Dunkerque LNG SAS, is the second-largest regasification terminal in mainland Europe and is the only one in Europe to be directly connected to two consumption markets: France and Belgium. Its annual regasification capacity of 13 billion cubic metres accounts for more than 20 percent of French and Belgian natural gas consumption.

The terminal is strategically located on a 56-hectare site at the crossroads of the Channel and North Sea, close to the natural gas consumption markets in northwest Europe. It comprises a jetty that is able to receive up to 150 LNG tankers per year, three isothermal LNG storage tanks - each with a capacity of around 200,000 cubic metres, and a regasification unit made up of 10 heat exchangers.

At the jetty, five articulated arms are available to unload ships at a maximum flow rate of 14,000 cubic metres per hour.

Commenting on the potential of LNG as a transportation fuel, Dunkerque LNG noted in a statement: "Natural gas also has a promising future as transport fuel. In liquefied form at -162C, its volume is reduced by 600 times, thus facilitating transport and storage. LNG is the choice alternative for long-haulage trucks and maritime navigation, where stricter standards are applied in certain seas, such as the Channel, North Sea and Baltic Sea."

Marc Benayoun, executive director at EDF Group, in charge of the gas sector and Italy, remarked: "I am delighted that commercial operations have started up at the Dunkirk regasification terminal, thus creating a new point of gas importation in France and strengthening security of supply in Europe. It also contributes to the development of the gas supply market, on which the group already operates with its Italian subsidiary, Edison, and wishes to further strengthen its share."

Established in 2008, Dunkerque LNG is owned by EDF, Fluxys and Total; EDF has a majority ownership of 65 percent, whilst Fluxys has a 25 percent stake and Total's share in the business is 10 percent.

Following commissioning, the terminal is to be operated by Gaz-Opale - a company 51 percent owned by Dunkerque LNG and 49 percent by Fluxys.




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