U.S. FERC approves Marathon's proposed Alaska LNG import project

(Reuters) - U.S. energy regulators approved a plan by Marathon Petroleum Corp’s Trans-Foreland Pipeline Co LLC unit to convert the Kenai liquefied natural gas (LNG) export plant in Alaska into an import terminal.

The U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) said Trans-Foreland has two years to put the proposed project into service.

FERC Commissioner Richard Glick, meanwhile, said he dissented as he has done in other recent cases because “the Commission is again refusing to consider the consequences its actions have for climate change.”

Trans-Foreland said the facility would import up to four tanker loads of LNG per year and use its boil-off gas management system to deliver imported gas to the adjacent Kenai Refinery.

The Kenai LNG export plant entered service in 1969. It has not exported LNG since 2015.

The plant was the only big LNG export facility in North America until Cheniere Energy Inc’s Sabine Pass export terminal in Louisiana entered service in February 2016. Nearly all of the LNG from Kenai went to Japan.

ConocoPhillips, the operator of Kenai, mothballed the facility in 2015 before selling it to a unit of Andeavor in February 2018.

Marathon Petroleum completed its purchase of Andeavor in October 2018.

Reporting by Scott DiSavino