U.S. LNG company Cheniere Energy Inc. said on Aug. 13 it continues to work with regulators to bring two of the five LNG storage tanks at its Sabine Pass export plant in Louisiana back in service following a leak in 2018.
Last week, Cheniere said in a federal securities filing that pipeline safety regulators proposed a $2.2 million penalty in July for alleged violations related to the 2018 leak.
Cheniere said in that securities filing it does not expect the tank issue will have a material adverse impact on its financial results or operations.
Cheniere is the biggest buyer of natural gas in the United States and is also the nation's biggest producer and exporter of LNG.
The company could not say when the tanks might return to service.
The U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) ordered Cheniere to shut two LNG storage tanks on Feb. 8, 2018, after plant workers on Jan. 22, 2018, discovered a 1-to-6-foot crack in one tank that leaked fuel into an outer layer.
During the investigation of the Sabine site, PHMSA discovered a second tank had also experienced releases of LNG from the inner tank.
In addition to PHMSA, Cheniere is also working with the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on the tank issue.
There are five tanks at Sabine, each with the capacity to hold the equivalent of 3.4 billion cubic feet of gas (Bcf), or 17 Bcf in total. One billion cubic feet of gas is enough to fuel about 5 million U.S. homes for a day.
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