Bloomberg: Billionaire T. Boone Pickens tied to liquefied natural gas terminal to be built in Jacksonville
Bloomberg News is reporting that a company owned by billionaire investor T. Boone Pickens plans to build a terminal to supply liquefied natural gas to cargo ships in Jacksonville.
Clean Energy Fuels Corp. will build a plant that will supply as much as 300,000 gallons a day by 2016, Bloomberg reported. General Electric Co. and Ferus Natural Gas Fuels are partnering with Clean Energy.
Last week, the North Florida Logistics Advisory Group talked about the importance of having a liquefied natural gas plant in the area. For JaxPort, that means being able to serve two new ships being built by Sea Star Lines, as well as ships in the future.
Ship owners are looking for alternatives to heavy fuel oil as national and international regulations require lower sulfur emissions, Bloomberg said.
LNG — natural gas chilled to liquid form — cuts sulfur emissions by as much as 95 percent and also releases less carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxide, according to DNV GL, the largest company certifying ships for safety standards.
"A vessel operator needs to have clear visibility that he will be able to get LNG for his vessels after he spends a considerable amount of money to convert them to run on LNG," Greg Roche of Clean Energy told Bloomberg on Oct. 17. "Our effort in Jacksonville will be stimulus for the industry to recognize that adopting LNG is something that is possible, feasible and near- term."
While the United States has about 60 small-scale liquefaction plants producing about 4.47 million gallons a day for transportation fuel and electricity, none are close enough to water for ships to use, Clean Energy estimates, Bloomberg reported. Harvey Gulf International Marine LLC is building an LNG fueling terminal in Port Fourchon, La., for ships supporting offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.
Clean Energy, based in Newport Beach, Calif., provides natural gas to more than 30,000 trucks, taxis, buses and other vehicles at more than 400 fueling stations in the United States and Canada.