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LNG hub in sight - New Fortress boss announces prep work to construct multimillion-dollar gas facility

Published:Thursday | April 5, 2018 | 12:00 AMRomario Scott/Gleaner Writer

Energy giant New Fortress will be making further steps in a matter of weeks to begin "dropping irons" in its preparatory work for the construction of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) hub.

New Fortress founder and chairman Wesley Edens made the announcement on Wednesday at the unveiling of several LNG-power tractor heads at Devon House in St Andrew, introduced by local industrial gas supplier IGL. Edens said that it was part of efforts to make Jamaica the LNG hub in the region, and by so doing, reduce dependency on diesel and gasoline.

"We want to make Jamaica a hub for LNG for the region, not only for the power and transportation that are on the island, but also transportation that surrounds the island," Edens stated. He announced that full work on the hub is to begin by the end of this year.

The energy giant has earmarked US$1 billion (J$126 billion) for investment in the country's LNG infrastructure. It was not immediately clear, however, whether the project cost was included in the funds set aside.

Edens said that the pilot project to have Jamaica Urban Transit Company buses fuelled by LNG was also closer to reality, and an announcement is to be made within a matter of days.

In the meantime, Minister of Science, Energy and Technology Andrew Wheatley expressed gratitude to IGL for helping Jamaica to reduce its carbon footprint.

"As minister of science energy and technology, taking it from a scientific perspective, I truly appreciate any initiative that seeks to reduce our carbon footprint.