Houston, Texas based LNG exporter Annova LNG took a major step forward in South Texas today when the Cameron County Commissioners Court, on a 3-2 vote, approved the company’s application for a tax abatement under the state’s Chapter 312 program. Supporters and opponents turned out for what was, at times, a contentious hearing with those supporting local economic development and energy development facing off with those who expressed concerns about changes to natural habitat, tourism, aquaculture, and other impacts.
The proposed LNG terminal will be built in the Port of Brownsville with Annova LNG helping to pay for port upgrades. In exchange for the 10 year agreement, the company will also make a $5.5M one time payment and 10 annual payments of $500,000 to the county. Two other companies, NextDecade and Texas LNG, are also exploring the possibility of developing LNG export hubs in the same area. Annova is owned by a consortium of companies with Chicago-based Exelon holding the lion’s share (80.55%) with the balance divided between Enbridge (10.5%), Kiewit (4.475%), and Black & Veatch (4.475%).