The Real Deal Miami

Port Manatee pipeline project runs out of gas

Norway-based Hoegh LNG had a pipeline deal worth $31 million to the port

January 10, 2016 05:30PM

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Port Manatee

Port Manatee

Citing increased domestic natural gas production, a Norwegian company pulled the plug on a project to bring imported natural gas by pipeline from offshore tankers to Port Manatee in the Tampa Bay area.

A subsidiary of Norway-based natural gas company Hoegh LNG gave official notice of its intent to vacate all federal permits obtained to build a submerged port in open water connected by a 28-mile pipeline to Port Manatee.

A 2010 agreement required the company to make a $16 million up-front payment to Port Manatee in the form of cash and assets, and to pay another $15 million over time to connect the 28-mile underwater pipeline to the port.

It would be the second pipeline that makes landfall at Port Manatee, running alongside another that Gulfstream Natural Gas built in 2002.

But in a regulatory filing, Hoegh LNG said a large increase in domestic production of natural gas ended the company’s ability to negotiate contracts for future gas imports to the planned Port Manatee facility.

Hoegh LNG said those conditions forced cancellation of the pipeline project with Port Manatee, stating that the United States is becoming an exporter rather than an importer of natural gas.” [Bradenton Herald]Mike Seemuth