On Aug. 9, 2012, HawaiiGAS, Hawaii’s clean gas energy provider, filed an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) requesting authority to import Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) to Hawaii.
Under the terms of the Natural Gas Act, HawaiiGAS seeks to initiate the first of three phases of a program for the use of this clean, cost effective fuel for customers.
The gas is being shipped from the continental United States in conventional insulated intermodal containers and will be used for emergency backup purposes to supplement feedstock supply in the event of damage or disruption in supply from existing sources.
HawaiiGAS is pursuing the use of natural gas to diversify its fuel supply and improve energy security. The company manufactures most of Honolulu’s gas from naphtha feedstock supplied by the Tesoro Kapolei Refinery adjacent to its Synthetic Natural Gas (SNG) Plant on the island of Oahu.
Performance issues with the Hawaii-based refineries and announced intention to sell the Tesoro Kapolei Refinery, along with Tesoro’s other Hawaii assets, emphasizes the importance of fuel supply diversification.
Hawaii does not have any naturally occurring fossil fuel resources and relies on imported petroleum to meet its energy needs. In 2011, the state imported 42 million barrels crude oil and another four million barrels of finished petroleum products, 95 percent of which were from countries other than the United States.
Natural gas is an alternative fuel available today that can be used to diversify Hawaii’s fuel supply and lower the cost of energy. It also supports the state’s clean energy goals, which seek to achieve 70 percent clean energy by 2030; 40 percent from locally generated renewable energy and 30 percent from efficiency measures.
“Subject to obtaining approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission and other regulatory agencies, The Gas Company intends to start importing LNG later this year,” according to Jeff Kissel, Gas Company president and CEO.
The Gas Company, LLC, doing business as HawaiiGAS for select products and services, is Hawaii’s only government franchised full-service gas company. HawaiiGAS manufactures synthetic natural gas (SNG) for most of its utility customers on Oahu, distributes propane to utility and non-utility customers throughout the state’s six primary islands and produces renewable gas products from agricultural feedstocks.
The Gas Company is a wholly owned subsidiary of Macquarie Infrastructure Company (NYSE: MIC). MIC owns, operates and invests in a diversified group of infrastructure businesses that provide basic services to customers across the United States.