US FERC denies LNG delay letters

Kevin McIntyre (Image courtesy of FERC)

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chairman Kevin McIntyre on Tuesday denied reports that the agency has informed LNG developers that they face 12 to 18 months delays in FERC’s review of their project applications.

In an interview on the FERC Open Access podcast External, McIntyre said that recent media reports of such letters are incorrect.

“FERC has issued no such letter,” McIntyre said.

To the contrary, he added, there is “good news” regarding the timing for LNG applications.

“In just the last few days we have made truly significant strides in reforming the permitting process with our federal partners, eliminating duplicative efforts and instituting a streamlined procedure that will significantly reduce our LNG permitting timelines,” McIntyre said.

He went on to say that the details were still being hammered out, but the agency expects to have a formalized agreement in place in the coming days.

In the past six months, FERC has issued revised notices of schedule for two projects, and one schedule for a greenfield LNG project that is subject to the FAST-41 process, McIntyre said.

“FERC staff is very cognizant of the financial market impacts of its LNG project schedules,” McIntyre said.

“Moreover, since we have been working diligently to streamline our permitting process and are still making significant strides in that direction, the release of any schedules to date would have been premature,” he said.

“For these reasons, among others, FERC takes very seriously the schedules that it issues regarding these LNG projects,” McIntyre said.

“To that end, we will not issue schedules until we have all the facts necessary and have implemented our improved processes to create accurate schedules,” he concluded.

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