Category Archives: Corpus Christi
Corpus Christi is a coastal city in the South Texas region of the U.S. state of Texas. The county seat of Nueces County, it also extends into Aransas, Kleberg, and San Patricio counties.
The planned Corpus Christi site will produce 13 million to 15 million metric tons a year of LNG, Charif Souki, chief executive officer at Houston-based Cheniere, said today in an interview at a natural gas conference in Tokyo.
The company plans to follow the contracting model established at its Sabine Pass terminal in Louisiana, Souki said. Sixteen million tons of LNG from Sabine Pass, from a total output of 18 million tons, will be sold on long-term contracts of as long as 20 years, with the rest to be offered on the spot market, he said.
“Those are the volumes that we’re not sure we can produce year after year so these will remain in the spot market,” he said. The first spot cargoes from Sabine Pass will reach the market in late 2015 or early 2016, he said.
Cheniere’s Sabine Pass site is the first in the contiguous U.S. to be able to export LNG. The project is expected to cost about $5.6 billion.
- Corpus Christi, TX: Cheniere files permits to build terminal, export LNG (appliedagrotech.net)
CORPUS CHRISTI — Cheniere Energy has filed for permits from the federal government to build its proposed liquefied natural gas terminal in San Patricio County.
The company’s subsidiary, Corpus Christi Liquefaction, applied this past week with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, or FERC, to build and operate the terminal along the La Quinta Channel near the Sherwin Alumina plant.
Liquefied natural gas, or LNG, is gas that is supercooled to liquid form for shipping. Cheniere then would export the product overseas.
The terminal — worth in excess of $10 billion — would feature storage tanks, docks and three liquefaction trains, or chilling facilities, each capable of processing millions of tons of natural gas.
Cheniere proposes processing about 1.8 billion cubic feet per day of LNG at the facility, drawn from sources including the gas-rich Eagle Ford Shale formation about 65 miles northwest of Corpus Christi.
The project includes a 23-mile pipeline that will tie in with the regional pipeline network.
Cheniere has more than 660 acres along the San Patricio County shoreline available for development, including a 52-acre piece under lease from the Port of Corpus Christi.
“After an eight month pre-filing process with the FERC, we have determined that our site at Corpus Christi meets all of the requirements of an attractive liquefaction project,” Charif Souki, chairman and CEO of Cheniere, said in a statement.
Cheniere once considered an LNG import facility at the same location. The import project received full approval from the federal government before plans were shelved because of market shifts.
That prior approval may help Cheniere with certain parts of its new export project during the approval process, company spokesman Andrew Ware said.
Company officials anticipate the terminal is on target to begin operation in late 2017.
Cheniere also applied for permission from the U.S. Department of Energy to export as much as 15 million tons per year of LNG from the site.
If approved, the department’s set of permits would allow Cheniere to export to all countries the U.S. has free trade agreements with and those it doesn’t, the company announced.
Due to an oversupply of natural gas in the U.S., low prices have made gas extraction less profitable.
Producers are flaring gas rather than selling it, which makes a case for exporting LNG to other countries, Ware said.
A condition of the Energy Department’s permission is that the company must prove there is an alternative public need for the gas the terminal will process, Ware said.
Cheniere also has applied for corresponding permits through the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and air permits from the Environmental Protection Agency. The entire permitting process for the site is being marshaled by federal energy regulators, Ware said.
The company expects to have its regulatory approvals and financing commitments secure by early 2014, with construction beginning about that time.
Commercial agreements could be done by the third quarter of 2013.
- USA: Golden Pass Files with DOE to Export LNG (appliedagrotech.net)
Posted on September 3, 2012 at 12:38 am by FuelFix.com
MEXICO CITY — Mexico’s national oil monopoly has been issuing critical alerts seemingly every week, warning of natural gas shortages lasting hours or even days and crimping supplies to homes, power plants and factories.
And yet, the country has some of the world’s largest natural gas reserves and easy access to a cheap and plentiful U.S. supply.
“There hasn’t been enough energy planning in this country,” said Raul Monteforte, a former senior official with Mexico’s Energy Regulatory Commission who’s now development director for Fermaca, a private Mexican transportation pipeline company. “Huge errors of omission have brought us a gas crisis.”
The gas squeeze will only worsen as many of Mexico’s new and existing electricity plants abandon coal and other fuels in favor of natural gas, gobbling up much of the available supply.
Petroleos Mexicanos, or Pemex, as the monopoly is called, will prove unable to get much more of the gas produced in its own fields to market.
Amid renewed political pressure to further open Mexico’s energy industries to private interests, energy planners have launched a frenzied expansion of the country’s woeful pipeline system. As much as 3 billion additional cubic feet per day of U.S. natural gas, most of it from Texas, will feed the new grid.
Central Mexican cities have been the worst affected by the critical shortage, but even companies in Monterrey, the industrial powerhouse that abuts the sprawling Burgos Basin gas fields, have been slammed.
“Such obstacles can’t be permitted, even less so ones provoked by a state monopoly,” Caintra, a leading Monterrey business association, declared in a full-page newspaper ad. “We demand an immediate solution.”
Texas, Arizona lines
Using an offshore Pemex subsidiary supposedly free of Mexican congressional oversight and constitutional restrictions, planners are rushing to build two new U.S. pipelines – to the Arizona border south of Tucson and from near Corpus Christi to the Rio Grande – to push that U.S. gas deep into the Mexican heartland.
Officials say the new pipelines will be completed by the late summer 2014.
But Monteforte and other critics contend that plans for the lion’s share of the expansion – shipping South Texas gas into the Mexican heartland – will assure Pemex’s grip on gas consumers for decades to come.
“If it flies I think Mexico’s gas market will remain in the hands of Pemex,” said Monteforte in criticizing the Texas pipeline proposal.
His company is building and will own a 225-mile pipeline from the border at El Paso to near Chihuahua City, he said.
“This will kill the opening of the gas market we’ve fought for since the 1990s,” he said.
The new U.S. pipelines, being contracted by Pemex’s MGI gas trading firm, will connect to a privately owned system being built across northwestern Mexico and to the much larger Los Ramones duct that will run from near the border at McAllen deep into central Mexico.
After sharp increases in the late 1980s and early ’90s, Mexico now imports some 15 percent of its natural gas supply from the United States, said Michelle Foss, program manager of the University of Texas’ Bureau of Economic Geology in Houston. By 2010, Mexico had increased its U.S. gas imports by 200 times what it did in the early 1980s.
Now, Mexico’s imports seem poised to spike again, perhaps bolstering prices for dry natural gas.
“Mexico will take all they can get and, as in the 1990s, could help to rebalance our market,” Foss said.
Project proposals for the South Texas pipeline – called the Agua Dulce to Frontera – were expected Monday. Pemex says the winning bid will be announced Sept. 18.
“For us it’s urgent to bring that gas,” said Guillermo Ortiz, a Mexico City executive who heads the energy committee at Canacintra, a leading Mexican industrial chamber. “They took a long time to contract for the pipelines. These types of situations are really hurting the consumers.”
- Mexico pipeline expansion may bring more money to Texas (fuelfix.com)
- Natural gas from Mexico beckons Texas companies (mysanantonio.com)
- Mexican Crime Syndicates Are Getting Into Stolen Petroleum (businessinsider.com)
- Will Texas oil companies get a shot at Mexico investments? (mysanantonio.com)
- Pemex’s El Perdido oil deposits may hold 10 billion barrels (fuelfix.com)
- Pena Nieto Push to Open Mexico Oil Fields Sparks Exxon Interest – Bloomberg (bloomberg.com)
- Mexico May Finally Get a Modern Oil Industry (businessweek.com)
Posted on May 9, 2012 at 9:28 am by Associated Press
Port of Corpus Christi commissioners on Tuesday approved a contract with Oxy Ingleside Property Holdings for 815 acres.
The Corpus Christi Caller-Times reports Oxy has about 90 days to close the sale.
Spokesman Mark Evans says Oxy filed a permit application last week with Texas environmental regulators to build a fractionator at a nearby Oxy Chemicals unit. The new property would be used to help support the chemical plant’s natural gas operations and exports.
Houston-based Canyon Supply and Logistics earlier this year failed to make a $19 million down payment for 187 acres of the former naval facility, which closed in 2010.
- Port Corpus Christi Gets New Director of Engineering Services (USA) (mb50.wordpress.com)
Port Corpus Christi announced yesterday the promotion of David Krams to Director of Engineering Services under the supervision of the Deputy Port Director of Engineering, Finance and Administration.
Krams’ experience at the Port and in private practice made him well qualified for the responsibilities as the new head of the Port’s Engineering Department. Krams will replace Greg W. Brubeck, who officially retires July 31, 2012 after 23 years of service to the Port. “I am looking forward to working with David during this two month transition period. David is most qualified to become the next Director of Engineering Services.” said Brubeck.
David Krams joined the port in 1994, after first working as a consulting engineer in the Corpus Christi area for ten years, specializing in underwater engineering related to marine and waterfront facilities. Prior to his promotion as Director of Engineering Services, Krams was the port’s Senior Project Engineer, who in 2009, was promoted to Manager of Channel Development responsible for the Corpus Christi Ship Channel – Channel Improvement Project, a Federal navigation planning project to widen and deepen the Corpus Christi Ship Channel from -45 feet to -52 feet and to extend the La Quinta Ship Channel. Krams also serves as the project manager for the La Quinta Multi-purpose/Container Project to be served by the La Quinta Ship Channel Improvements.
David Krams is a Registered Professional Engineer in the State of Texas. He received his Bachelor of Science in Ocean Engineering from Texas A&M University – College Station. Krams is a resident of Corpus Christi since 1972, active in the local community, serving on various local executive and regular boards and committees.
Greg W. Brubeck joined the staff of the Port in 1989 as an Engineer Planner and was subsequently promoted to Deputy Director of Engineering and later to Director of Engineering Services. A Registered Professional Engineer in the State of Texas, Brubeck received his BSME from the United States Naval academy in 1969 and MSCE from Texas A&M University in 1980. A retired Commander, Mr. Brubeck proudly served twenty years in the United States Navy as both a Naval Aviator and Civil Engineer Corps Officer.
Mr. Brubeck has been a resident of Corpus Christi since 1986. In addition to several work related professional organizations, Mr. Brubeck is active in the local community and is a graduate of Leadership Corpus Christi Class XX, a Past President of the Kiwanis Club of Corpus Christi, a Past President of the Coastal Bend Post of the Society of American Military Engineers, and Past Board Member of the Navy–Army Federal Credit Union. Mr. Brubeck was born in Indiana and was raised in several States and in the Far East and Europe in the family of a career United States Army Corps of Engineers officer prior to becoming a Texan.
03 May 2012 10:40 GMT Bill Lehane
Preparations to bring the Mustang Island 818-L field back into production have been thrown off course after a lift-boat due to work on the project crashed during another job.
Silvermere Energy chief executive Andy Morrison admitted the delay was “unfortunate and frustrating” for the US-focused junior, which is partnered with operator Dominion Production in the development.
Morrison stressed the incident did not directly impact the AIM-listed outfit or its Kleberg County partner financially, since the boat was not on contract to Dominion at the time of the accident.
The collision tore a three-foot hole in the vessel’s hull, causing it to take on large amounts of water and lose engine power.
It is thought the boat will now be out of action for at least two months.
The incident is now under investigation by the US Coast Guard, with the vessel having been towed to Cameron, Louisiana for inspection.
Laredo, the contractor to Dominion, is attempting to source an alternative vessel.
The field’s I-1 well, which was acquired by Silvermere Energy from Core Oil & Gas, previously enjoyed 15 years of production between 1980 and 1995 before being shut down for economic reasons.
The junior had initially hoped to restart production by the end of last year.
The nine unmanned aircraft are expensive to operate but their results are unimpressive, critics say. But one official says the criticism is shortsighted.
By Brian Bennett, Washington Bureau April 28, 2012, 9:16 p.m
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The drug runners call it “el mosco,” the mosquito, and one recent evening on the southern tip of Texas, a Predator B drone armed with cameras buzzed softly over the beach on South Padre Island and headed inland.
“We’re going to get some bad guys tonight, I’ve got a feeling,” said Scott Peterson, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection supervisory air interdiction agent. He watched the drone’s live video feed in the Predator Ops room at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi, about 50 miles away.
As the unmanned plane flew up the winding Rio Grande, which forms the border with Mexico, Peterson fielded excited phone calls. One agent had seen known scouts for a Mexican cartel at a Dairy Queen, suggesting a load of drugs was coming through. Another called in the precise spot where the shipment would land.
Soon the drone’s infrared camera picked up a man hauling bales of marijuana from an inflatable rubber boat into a minivan on the Texas side of the river. Then it spotted a second boat. Agents readied for a major bust.
But the April 18 raid was not the success Peterson had envisioned. He wanted the drone to track the smugglers to a stash house, and perhaps to ranking cartel members. Instead, Border Patrol agents rushed to the riverbank, sirens blaring. They seized half a ton of pot, a 1996 Plymouth Voyager van and a boat. The smugglers escaped and no one was arrested.
The mixed results highlight a glaring problem for Homeland Security officials who have spent six years and more than $250 million building the nation’s largest fleet of domestic surveillance drones: The nine Predators that help police America‘s borders have yet to prove very useful in stopping contraband or illegal immigrants.
The border drones require an hour of maintenance for every hour they fly, cost more to operate than anticipated, and are frequently grounded by rain or other bad weather, according to a draft audit of the program last month by the Homeland Security Department‘s inspector general.
Last year, the unmanned fleet flew barely half the number of flight hours that Customs and Border Protection had scheduled on the northern or southern borders, or over the Caribbean, according to the audit.
And the drones often are unavailable to assist border agents because Homeland Security officials have lent the aircraft to the FBI, Texas Rangers and other government agencies for law enforcement, disaster relief and other uses.
The audit slammed Homeland Security for buying two drones last year and ordering an additional $20.5-million Predator B system in Cocoa Beach, Fla., this year, saying it already owns more drones than it can utilize. Each drone costs about $3,000 an hour to fly.
To help pay for the drones, Customs and Border Protection has raided budgets of its manned aircraft. One result: Flight hours were cut by 10% for the P-3 Orion maritime surveillance planes that hunt smuggling ships on the West Coast and in the Caribbean.
The amount of illicit drugs seized in Predator raids is “not impressive,” acknowledged Michael Kostelnik, a retired Air Force major general who heads the office that supervises the drones.
Last year, the nine border drones helped find 7,600 pounds of marijuana, valued at $19.3 million. The 14 manned P-3 Orions helped intercept 148,000 pounds of cocaine valued at $2.8 billion.
In an interview, Kostelnik dismissed criticism of the border drones as shortsighted. He sketched out scenarios, such as a nuclear plant meltdown or detonation of a dirty bomb, where the drones could help assess damage without endangering a pilot.
If a major terrorist attack occurred in Washington or New York City, Kostelnik said, he could put drones overhead in five hours, assuming they could be flown up from Florida or carried on a cargo plane, to help first responders and policymakers.
“It is not about the things we are doing today,” Kostelnik said. “It is about the things we might be able to do.”
The recent raid on the Rio Grande showed some of the pros and cons of the border drones.
Inside the Predator Ops center, the crew watched as the minivan filled with marijuana drove away on a dirt road. The Predator’s camera followed. Suddenly, a figure raced in front of the minivan, waving his hands for the driver to turn back.
“He’s spooked!” said Lyle Belew, the mission commander. “Stay on him!” he ordered the camera operator as the van did a quick U-turn.
Instead of risking a potentially violent standoff in a nearby residential neighborhood, the agents on the ground decided to cut the operation short and try to seize the drugs at the river.
A Border Patrol SUV suddenly appeared on screen, chasing the minivan back to the riverbank. Then six figures jumped out of the minivan and into the water, taking one of the two rubber boats. Several Border Patrol agents ran down the beach in pursuit.
In the Ops Center, Border Patrol liaison Hector Black worried that cartel gunmen might open fire on his agents from the far side of the river.
“Ask them to pan [the drone camera] to Mexico to make sure nobody starts shooting at our guys,” Black said. “See if there are guys with long arms,” meaning rifles.
The banks looked empty, but the camera clearly showed six figures and a rubber boat drifting down the dark river and back into Mexico.
Copyright © 2012, Los Angeles Times
- Drones and the Dream of Remote Control in the Borderlands (counterpunch.org)
- Gov’t Spies in our Skies. FAA Issues Drone Permits. (freedombytheway.com)
- Are there drones in your town? Check the map to see — Rise of spy planes exposed after FAA is forced to reveal 63 launch sites across U.S. (12160.info)
- Senate told drones now patrolling U.S.-Canada border (ctv.ca)
- Is there a drone in your neighbourhood? Rise of spy planes exposed after FAA is forced to reveal 63 launch sites across U.S. (vaticproject.blogspot.com)
- Alarming List of Drones for Universities, Police Released (commondreams.org)
- Predators (socialnomicsingularity.wordpress.com)
- Attorney: ‘Guerilla-Like Police Tactics’ Used in First American Drone Arrest (usnews.com)
- Unmanned drones making U.S. a Predator nation (cbsnews.com)