We caught up with Marcel Tijhuis, Senior Project Manager Business Development LNG at German LNG Terminal ahead of his participation at the 21st World LNG Summit & Awards. Marcel gave an insight into German LNG Terminal project developments, and told us what he is looking forward to about the Summit. Read on for the full interview.
The German LNG Terminal project at Brunsbuttel has made further progress recently. What stage are you now up to?
Submission of the final draft plan approval application documents to the authorities; EPC contract negotiations with Cobra/Sener are in the final stage and we expect a successful closure soon. Furthermore we expect confirmation from the European Commission on the exemption from regulation granted by the German regulator in May; and discussions with our customers on contracting of long-term terminal capacity are in the final phase.
Against the backgroup of the European Green Deal, how confident are you in keeping interest in LNG imports over the next 20 years?
Considering nuclear, lignite and coal exit in Germany, gas demand is expected to grow slightly in the coming years. Natural gas can play a role as a transitional energy source for power production and LNG is well placed to be used as a diversifier by the market.
Given Germany’s existing connection to a number of gas supply sources plus the Nord Stream 2 pipeline under construction, does the country need LNG import terminals and what are the advantages of your terminal?
The market has given a clear signal that there is appetite for an LNG terminal in Germany. Advantages are the location at the river mouth of the Elbe coming from the open sea, very close to the Kiel Canal, which gives direct access to Scandinavia and the Baltics. This is an interesting market for LNG distribution via vessels. Furthermore the side is located adjacent to a large industrial area where synergies will be developed.
Your terminal offers LNG bunkering services. Do you anticipate demand for LNG as a transport fuel increasing during the 2020s?
The discussions on cleaner air and emission reductions are paramount, even more so in a highly industrialised country like Germany. Therefore, we strongly believe that LNG as a fuel will increase, typically in NW Europe, Scandinavia and the Baltic area. German LNG Terminal is perfectly equipped and located to facilitate the need for clean fuels.
As countries look to introduce hydrogen to their energy mix as part of the decarbonisation drive, could the German LNG terminal serve as a potential location for future hydrogen import to Germany?
Absolutely! One of the advantages of our location is that in this area a lot of wind power is also available. We are actively working with RWE and others to study what the possibilities are to make the terminal ready for the future and to prepare ourselves for it.
You are speaking and sponsoring at the 21st World LNG Summit & Awards Evening in Rome in December 2021. What are you most looking foward to?
To meet and speak to all the colleagues in the industry again after a too long period of Teams sessions. It is time to meet physically again!