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Notice

Texas LNG Brownsville LLC; Application for Long-Term, Multi-Contract Authorization To Export Liquefied Natural Gas to Non-Free Trade Agreement Nations for a 25-Year Period

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AGENCY:

Office of Fossil Energy, DOE.

ACTION:

Notice of application.

SUMMARY:

The Office of Fossil Energy (FE) of the Department of Energy (DOE) gives notice of receipt of an application (Application), filed on April 15, 2015, by Texas LNG Brownsville LLC (Texas LNG), requesting long-term, multi-contract authorization to export domestically produced liquefied natural gas (LNG) in a volume equivalent to approximately 0.55 billion cubic feet per year (Bcf/d) of natural gas (200.75 Bcf per year (Bcf/yr)). On May 22, 2015, Texas LNG filed a First Amendment to the Application, increasing the requested export volume to 0.56 Bcf/d of natural gas (204.4 Bcf/yr), which it states is equivalent to 4 million metric tons per annum of LNG. Texas LNG seeks authorization to export the LNG by vessel from the proposed Texas LNG facility to be constructed at the Port of Brownsville in Brownsville, Texas, to any country with which the United States does not have a free trade agreement (FTA) requiring national treatment for trade in natural gas, and with which trade is not prohibited by U.S. law or policy (non-FTA countries).[1] Texas LNG requests the authorization for a 25-year term to commence on the earlier of the date of first export or 10 years from the date the authorization is granted. Texas LNG seeks to export this LNG on its own behalf and as agent for other entities who hold title to the LNG at the time of export. The Application was filed under section 3 of the Natural Gas Act (NGA). Additional details can be found in Texas LNG's Application and First Amendment to the Application, posted on the DOE/FE Web site at: http://energy.gov/​sites/​prod/​files/​2015/​05/​f22/​15_​62_​lng.pdf and http://energy.gov/​sites/​prod/​files/​2015/​06/​f22/​Amendment%20to%20Application05_​22_​15.pdf. Protests, motions to intervene, notices of intervention, and written comments are invited.

DATES:

Protests, motions to intervene or notices of intervention, as applicable, requests for additional procedures, and written comments are to be filed using procedures detailed in the Public Comment Procedures section no later than 4:30 p.m., Eastern time, October 5, 2015.

ADDRESSES:

Electronic Filing by email: fergas@hq.doe.gov.

Regular Mail: U.S. Department of Energy (FE-34), Office of Oil and Gas Global Security and Supply, Office of Fossil Energy, P.O. Box 44375, Washington, DC 20026-4375.

Hand Delivery or Private Delivery Services (e.g., FedEx, UPS, etc.): U.S. Department of Energy (FE-34), Office of Oil and Gas Global Security and Supply, Office of Fossil Energy, Forrestal Building, Room 3E-042, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Larine Moore or Marc Talbert, U.S. Department of Energy (FE-34), Office of Start Printed Page 46967Oil and Gas Global Security and Supply, Office of Fossil Energy, Forrestal Building, Room 3E-042, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585, (202) 586-9478; (202) 586-7991.

Cassandra Bernstein, U.S. Department of Energy (GC-76), Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Electricity and Fossil Energy, Forrestal Building, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585, (202) 586-9793.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

DOE/FE Evaluation

The Application will be reviewed pursuant to section 3(a) of the NGA, 15 U.S.C. 717b(a), and DOE will consider any issues required by law or policy. To the extent determined to be relevant, these issues will include the domestic need for the natural gas proposed to be exported, the adequacy of domestic natural gas supply, U.S. energy security, and the cumulative impact of the requested authorization and any other LNG export application(s) previously approved on domestic natural gas supply and demand fundamentals. DOE may also consider other factors bearing on the public interest, including the impact of the proposed exports on the U.S. economy (including GDP, consumers, and industry), job creation, the U.S. balance of trade, and international considerations; and whether the authorization is consistent with DOE's policy of promoting competition in the marketplace by allowing commercial parties to freely negotiate their own trade arrangements. Additionally, DOE will consider the following environmental documents:

  • Addendum to Environmental Review Documents Concerning Exports of Natural Gas From the United States, 79 FR 48132 (Aug. 15, 2014); and [2]
  • Life Cycle Greenhouse Gas Perspective on Exporting Liquefied Natural Gas From the United States, 79 FR 32260 (June 4, 2014).[3]

Parties that may oppose this Application should address these issues in their comments and/or protests, as well as other issues deemed relevant to the Application.

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq., requires DOE to give appropriate consideration to the environmental effects of its proposed decisions. No final decision will be issued in this proceeding until DOE has met its environmental responsibilities.

Public Comment Procedures

In response to this Notice, any person may file a protest, comments, or a motion to intervene or notice of intervention, as applicable. Due to the complexity of the issues raised by the Applicant, interested persons will be provided 60 days from the date of publication of this Notice in which to submit comments, protests, motions to intervene, or notices of intervention.

Any person wishing to become a party to the proceeding must file a motion to intervene or notice of intervention. The filing of comments or a protest with respect to the Application will not serve to make the commenter or protestant a party to the proceeding, although protests and comments received from persons who are not parties will be considered in determining the appropriate action to be taken on the Application. All protests, comments, motions to intervene, or notices of intervention must meet the requirements specified by the regulations in 10 CFR part 590.

Filings may be submitted using one of the following methods: (1) Emailing the filing to fergas@hq.doe.gov, with FE Docket No. 15-62-LNG in the title line; (2) mailing an original and three paper copies of the filing to the Office of Oil and Gas Global Security and Supply at the address listed in ADDRESSES; or (3) hand delivering an original and three paper copies of the filing to the Office of Oil and Gas Global Supply at the address listed in ADDRESSES. All filings must include a reference to FE Docket No. 15-62-LNG. PLEASE NOTE: If submitting a filing via email, please include all related documents and attachments (e.g., exhibits) in the original email correspondence. Please do not include any active hyperlinks or password protection in any of the documents or attachments related to the filing. All electronic filings submitted to DOE must follow these guidelines to ensure that all documents are filed in a timely manner. Any hardcopy filing submitted greater in length than 50 pages must also include, at the time of the filing, a digital copy on disk of the entire submission.

A decisional record on the Application will be developed through responses to this notice by parties, including the parties' written comments and replies thereto. Additional procedures will be used as necessary to achieve a complete understanding of the facts and issues. If an additional procedure is scheduled, notice will be provided to all parties. If no party requests additional procedures, a final Opinion and Order may be issued based on the official record, including the Application and responses filed by parties pursuant to this notice, in accordance with 10 CFR 590.316.

The Application is available for inspection and copying in the Division of Natural Gas Regulatory Activities docket room, Room 3E-042, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585. The docket room is open between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The Application and any filed protests, motions to intervene or notice of interventions, and comments will also be available electronically by going to the following DOE/FE Web address: http://www.fe.doe.gov/​programs/​gasregulation/​index.html.

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Issued in Washington, DC, on July 31, 2015.

John A. Anderson,

Director, Office of Oil and Gas Global Security and Supply, Office of Oil and Natural Gas.

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Footnotes

1.  In FE Docket No. 13-160-LNG, DOE/FE previously issued Order No. 3443 to Texas LNG, authorizing it to export LNG in a volume equivalent to 100 Bcf/yr of natural gas (0.27 Bcf/d) to FTA countries. Texas LNG further notes that a non-FTA export application for the same volume remains pending in that docket. See App. at 7. In the current Application, Texas LNG states that “[the] FTA authorization and non-FTA application in Docket No. 13-160-LNG shall remain in effect until the DOE/FE acts on the authorized requested in this new docket, at which time Texas LNG LLC shall request that Docket No. 13-160-LNG be novated.” Id. Additionally, in the current Application, Texas LNG requests authorization to export LNG to any nation that currently has, or in the future may enter into, a FTA requiring national treatment for trade in natural gas, and with which trade is not prohibited by U.S. law or policy (FTA countries). DOE/FE will review that request for a FTA export authorization separately pursuant to NGA § 3(c), 15 U.S.C. 717b(c).

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[FR Doc. 2015-19331 Filed 8-5-15; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6450-01-P