The first liquid gas from the USA arrives in Wilhelmshaven

The first liquid gas from the USA arrives in Wilhelmshaven

LNG special ship “Höegh Esperanza”


The first natural gas from the USA has arrived at the new LNG terminal in Wilhelmshaven. The tanker “Maria Energy” loaded with 170,000 cubic meters of liquefied natural gas (LNG) arrived there on Tuesday, as the operator of the terminals, Uniper, explained. The liquid gas is now loaded onto the special ship “Höegh Esperanza”. This makes the LNG gaseous again and then feeds it into the German gas network.

In gas form, the cargo of the “Maria Energy” corresponds to a good 97 million cubic meters. According to Uniper, this is enough to supply around 50,000 households for a year. According to this, a total of five billion cubic meters of gas can be fed in via the plant in Wilhelmshaven per year.

The floating terminal in Wilhelmshaven was the first of several such facilities to open in December. In the course of the Ukraine war and the lack of Russian gas supplies, the federal government is pushing ahead with the development of infrastructure for the import of liquid gas. Four more floating landing stations are in preparation. There is also a private sector project in Lubmin.

The LNG that has now been delivered was loaded on the coast of the US state of Louisiana. Mike Sabel, head of the LNG provider Venture Global, which operates the liquefaction plant there, congratulated “Uniper and the German government for their quick action in building the infrastructure”. “LNG as a reliable source of energy is crucial for the security of supply in Germany and Europe,” explained Niek den Hollander from Uniper.

The German Environmental Aid (DUH), on the other hand, sharply criticized the import of gas from the USA, since it is produced there using the controversial fracking technology. The landing of the first fracking gas in Germany was “a historic low blow for climate protection and nature conservation,” explained DUH Federal Managing Director Sascha Müller-Kraenner. “In addition to high climate-damaging methane emissions, the fracking technique uses several million liters of water per well and can trigger earthquakes.”

In view of the energy crisis, the DUH had expressed understanding for the construction of temporary infrastructure for the import of liquid gas. At the same time, environmentalists warned against sticking to fossil fuels for the long term. They massively criticize plans for permanent import terminals. In particular, they state that, contrary to what is often suggested, gasification plants cannot easily be used for the import of hydrogen in the future.


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