The JAX LNG facility located along the St. John’s River in Jacksonville, Florida, is expanding its capacity—tripling liquefaction to 360,000 gallons a day and doubling LNG storage to 4 million gallons. The expansion is expected to be placed in service by early 2022 and will support a new long-term LNG supply agreement with a major maritime company for its dual-fueled ships.
JAX LNG began operations in 2018 and is a joint venture between Pivotal LNG (Pivotal), a BHE GT&S company, and NorthStar Midstream (NorthStar). Global trends toward cleaner energy and new international maritime emissions regulations are driving demand for LNG. Following completion of the JAX LNG expansion, Pivotal’s network of LNG assets will reach a production capacity of over 470,000 gallons per day and a storage capacity of approximately 9 million gallons at its three facilities in Alabama, Florida, and Pennsylvania.
“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to meet our customers’ LNG needs and the growing LNG demands in the eastern U.S.,” said Tim Delay, Vice President of Pivotal LNG. “The expansion at JAX LNG with our partner NorthStar further demonstrates our commitment to investing in the future of clean energy.”
Construction of the liquefaction expansion is underway, led by Salof Ltd. (Salof). Robert Luhrs, President of Salof, stated, “Our approach to natural gas facilities ensures the highest attention to the safety and well-being of the facility operators and the local community, while also ensuring we protect our customers’ investment. We specify equipment and systems that meet the latest environmental standards and reliability.” He added, “We are extremely proud to be leading the delivery of the JAX LNG expansion. Many of our modular units are already installed at the site, and we look forward to successfully commissioning the Phase 2 facility.”
For the storage expansion, JAX LNG is working with subsidiaries of Matrix Service Company, a leading contractor to the energy and industrial markets and leader in small- to mid-size LNG liquefaction and storage terminals. Matrix completed the roof lift of the new 2 million gallon storage tank this past December, fulfilling a major construction milestone in the project.
“We are pleased to help JAX LNG bring this critical infrastructure to life, providing cleaner alternative fuel,” said Matrix Service Company President and CEO John R. Hewitt. “Beginning with the engineering and construction of the first LNG storage tank for this facility, we value our ongoing relationship and appreciate the opportunity to continue providing safe, high-quality work to help JAX LNG achieve its current and future business objectives.”
The use of LNG as fuel allows maritime companies to move toward a cleaner energy future and comply with the International Maritime Organization’s 2020 emissions regulations. According to a study by SEA\LNG and the Society for Gas as a Marine Fuel, LNG as a marine fuel can reduce greenhouse emissions up to 21% compared to current oil-based marine fuels.
In 2019, NorthStar formed Polaris New Energy (Polaris), an LNG marine transportation company. Polaris is constructing a new 5400 m3 LNG bunker barge with Fincantieri Bay and an integrated tug with Master Boat Builders. When complete, this new articulated tug and barge unit (ATB) will deliver LNG to an existing major maritime customer and others along the East Coast.
“The shipyards building our tug and barge are making solid progress. The ATB Clean Canaveral will be in operation by the end of 2021,” said Tim Casey, Senior Vice President – LNG, NorthStar.
“The shipping industry is working hard to reduce its carbon footprint by using LNG as a fuel, which can limit CO2 emissions by more than 20% and SOX and NOX by more than 90%. We are prepared to support those efforts by delivering LNG as a more environmentally friendly fuel for our customers.” The Clean Canaveral will not only serve customers in the Jacksonville area, but will also have the ability to transit up and down the East Coast to serve customers in other ports. The ATB’s ocean-going capability will provide great flexibility in helping Polaris build out its business and serve customers’ needs.
The JAX LNG facility was the first small-scale waterside LNG production facility in the U.S. with both marine and truck loading capabilities. Since its 2018 commissioning, the facility has safely made over 150 deliveries to the LNG barge Clean Jacksonville through its integrated marine loading dock. This state-of-the-art facility was constructed through a joint venture between Pivotal and NorthStar.