New South Wales is set to see its first liquified natural gas (LNG) terminal, with Australian Industrial Energy (AIE) - a consortium that includes billionaire Andrew Forrest - announcing plans to build a $300 million import terminal at Port Kembla near Wollongong.
According to AIE Chief Executive Officer James Baulderstone, Port Kembla was the ideal location for the new terminal because of the nearby steelworks and other major industries.
“This is the heartland of manufacturing. We’ve had fantastic support from the community and the industry, it’s the best place in Australia,” Mr Baulderstone said.
Port Kembla Gas Terminal, once completed, will be able to produce more than 100 petajoules of gas annually, enough to supply over 70 per cent of the State’s gas needs. The new terminal will be sourcing gas from South East Asia, the United States as well as other parts of Australia.
The proposed Port Kembla Gas Terminal is expected to generate up to 150 jobs during its construction as well as 40 to 50 operational positions.
With the new LNG terminal in NSW, power prices for households and businesses are going to be lowered. Trade and Industry Minister Niall Blair said that gas is expensive because the State relies on interstate sources for approximately 95 per cent of its gas supply.
“This is a game changer, not just for the Illawara… it’s a gamechanger for industry and jobs for New South Wales.
“They are going to bring gas in to this terminal here in Port Kembla at a price that is going to disrupt the market and drive down gas prices in New South Wales,” Mr Blair said.
The consortium behind the project is comprised of Squadron Energy, Marubeni Corporation - a global infrastructure investor - and LNG buyer Jera.
AIE is currently undertaking planning applications for the project and is awaiting approval from the NSW Government. The new LNG terminal is expected to begin operations by 2020.
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