• Sempra to work with Japanese companies on synthetic methane project evaluation

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      Patrick Lavery

      Combustion Industry News Editor

Houston-based Sempra Infrastructure (a subsidiary of Sempra) is to work with Tokyo Gas Company, Osaka Gas Company, Toho Gas Company, and Mitsubishi Corporation to evaluate a project to create synthetic methane (or ‘e-natural gas’) on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico.

Should the project go ahead, Sempra’s press release states, it could be “the first link of an international supply chain of liquified e-natural gas, a synthetic gas produced from renewable hydrogen and carbon dioxide.” Preliminary feasibility work has been ongoing since last year. If it goes ahead, the project would produce 130,000 tonnes (presumably metric) of methane per year from the Cameron LNG terminal in Southwest Louisiana, which would be liquified and transported to Japan for use.

It appears that the decision has not yet been made as to whether the green hydrogen feedstock would be produced as part of the project, or procured. Many steps must come before the project goes ahead, including commercial agreements, permits, and securing financing.

As the press release notes, the agreement comes as the U.S. Department of Energy and Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry implement a memorandum of cooperation in the fields of “carbon capture, utilization and storage, conversion and recycling, and carbon dioxide removal.”