Estonian port approves LNG bunkering terminal

1 July 2015 | Thomas Rodgers, Market Reporter

The construction of a small-scale LNG bunkering terminal in Tallinn, Estonia was approved by its port authority on Tuesday.

The port’s council gave the go-ahead to the construction of a small-scale LNG receiving, fuelling and distribution terminal in the Port of Muuga, near Estonia’s capital. The terminal is scheduled to be completed in early 2017 and should cost at least €20m.

The terminal will be constructed by Vopak, a Dutch terminal operator. Vopak initially intended the terminal to serve the bunker market in the Baltic Sea but has left its options open to potentially offer a minimum of 30,000 cubic metres of storage capacity and connect the terminal to the local or national gas grid. Truck loading services are also an option.

A connection to the distribution grid could see the terminal deliver up to 1.5 million cubic metres (mcm)/day, whereas the transmission system connection could facilitate up to 5.5mcm/day, according to Vopak.

Vopak is currently conducting a feasibility study, while a final investment decision has yet to be made.

Plans to develop a small-scale LNG terminal in Estonia have been linked with a mooted larger facility in Finland, as part of a wider proposal to link the two countries’ gas markets. The two states are also considering building a pipeline to link their networks.

These plans are all part of an EU-backed scheme to lessen the dependency of Estonia and Finland on Russian gas.

Estonian grid operator Elering Gaas and Vopak partnered with the Tallinn port back in 2012 to develop the LNG facility. Elering Gaas would not comment on Tuesday’s decision.

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