TotalEnergies opens Germany’s second LNG import terminal

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Jan. 13 (UPI) — French company TotalEnergies said Friday it started operations at a German terminal that turns liquid gas back to the gaseous form for use on the grid, adding more support to European energy security.

TotalEnergies, formerly Total S.A., announced the start of operations at the Deutsche Ostsee import terminal for liquefied natural gas. German Chancellor Olaf Scholtz is scheduled to be on hand Saturday for a formal inauguration of the terminal on the coast of the Black Sea.

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Stephane Michel, the head of natural gas, renewables and power at TotalEnergies, said the terminal results in a 15% increase in the company’s total European regasification capacity.

The company’s LNG portfolio is “broad and flexible,” he said, and can help Europe cope with the “historic gas supply crisis caused by the sharp drop in flows from Russia.”

Regasification terminals can be found floating offshore in specialized ships, dubbed floating storage and regasification units. TotalEnergies supplied German energy company Deutsche ReGas with the Neptune, a vessel that has enough regasification capacity to meet about 5% of German demand.

The announcement came 10 days after Germany received its first-ever shipment of LNG. The LNG supply vessel Maria Energy loaded up at the Calcasieu Pass export terminal in Louisiana on Dec. 19 and arrived early January at a terminal in Wilhelmshaven, operated by German energy company Uniper.

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Uniper is converting liquid gas back to its gaseous form using an offshore floating, storage and regasification unit dubbed Hoegh Esperanza.

The European energy market has made something of a stunning turnaround in just a few short months. Russia before the outbreak of war in Ukraine was the primary supplier of crude oil and natural gas to the European economy and leaders spent much of last year fretting over where to get alternate sources.

LNG, however, is not yet a panacea for Europe. Norwegian consultancy Rystad Energy reported this week the energy market remains in a precarious state as LNG volumes are now only partially making up for the loss of Russian supplies.

TotalEnergies claims 10% of the world market share of LNG.