The Isle of Grain liquefied natural gas terminal has boosted its capacity by 50% after a new jetty opened yesterday.
The first cargo of LNG arrived at Grain on 29 October and the expansion work was completed in the following month.
The new jetty provides capacity for new customers E.ON Ruhrgas and Iberdrola, together with additional space for existing customer Centrica.
Operated National Grid has spent more £800m on the site, which now has the ability to supply around 20% of UK demand, or up to12m houses per day.
Grain has the largest tank capacity of any terminal in the UK, with total LNG storage availability of one million cubic metres, equivalent to more than two days’ worth of average UK gas demand.
The new unloading jetty has been designed to accommodate Q-Max vessels, the biggest LNG carriers in the world.
Now National Grid is planning a third phase of expansion. The company’s director of UK LNG, Peter Boreham, said: “This latest expansion of our Grain LNG terminal is a real boost for Britain’s ability to secure gas from diverse sources, giving the capacity to bring in another 6.7 billion cubic metres of gas per year.
“With discussions about a further phase of the terminal continuing in a very positive way, it cements our position as the UK’s leading LNG importation terminal with a great track record of delivering what we promise.”
Energy Minister Charles Hendry said: “With the widespread cold hitting the UK, it brings home the importance of secure energy supplies for everyone across the country.
“This government is committed to ensuring we keep the lights on, and having diverse supplies is crucial to this. This expansion of National Grid’s Grain LNG terminal is very welcome news. The UK still has substantial oil and gas resources, but projects like this also give us access to LNG from as far afield as Algeria, Qatar, Trinidad, and even from Australia.”