Henri Proglio, Chairman and CEO of EDF, today laid the foundation stone in the presence of Michel Delebarre, Member of the French Senate, Mayor of Dunkirk and Chairman of the Urban Community of Dunkirk. The Dunkirk LNG terminal is expected to be commissioned towards the end of 2015 and is the second largest industrial construction site in France after the EPR site at Flamanville.
The terminal will be able to accommodate the world’s largest LNG tankers and will have sufficient capacity for 13 billion cubic metres of gas per year, the equivalent of 20% of the annual natural gas consumption of France and Belgium combined. This project incorporates three main elements: work on the platform and marine infrastructure will be carried out by the Port of Dunkirk (Grand Port Maritime), the LNG terminal and connection facilities to the French and Belgian networks, to be developed by the operators, GRTgaz and Fluxys. EDF subsidiary, Dunkerque LNG (65% EDF, 25% Fluxys and 10% Total), is responsible for the project with a total investment for the terminal alone amounting to one billion euros.
With its three liquefied natural gas storage tanks, the terminal will offer the network increased flexibility to supply gas-fired power stations which are able to meet peak electricity demands, especially in the winter months. In environmental terms, EDF has opted to heat the liquefied natural gas using a zero carbon method based partly on hot water discharged by the Gravelines nuclear plant, thus ensuring that the terminal is at the forefront of energy efficiency developments.
The site is set to employ up to 1,200 people in the Dunkirk area during the terminal development phase between 2012 and 2015 and during the operating phase, creating around 160 direct and indirect jobs. This infrastructure will also help revitalise port traffic with an expected increase in excess of 7%.
In Henri Proglio’s words: “The Dunkirk LNG terminal strengthens the historical presence of EDF on the Dunkirk territory and contributes to the economic influence of the whole area. This achievement, which is unique in being linked to two markets - France and Belgium - will play a major part in safeguarding and diversifying European gas supplies. This ambitious project underlines the EDF Group’s desire to develop a real gas platform, and is also backed up by the Group’s takeover of the second Italian electrician and gas operator Edison, finalised earlier this year.”
Taking a closer look