Chevron, the U.S-based energy company, has temporarily halted the third liquefaction train at its Gorgon LNG plant on Barrow Island in Western Australia, apparently due to some mechanical issue. However, trains 1 and 2 will continue LNG production and loading of cargoes.
Allegedly, this mechanical issue is due to sweeping heat wave across Australia. Chevron’s spokesperson has not officially confirmed it, and the actual cause is still under investigation.
But, according to Reuters, higher than usual temperatures could potentially affect the cooling processes of an LNG plant; so, the allegations are not groundless. In fact, according to the Bureau of Meteorology, the past ten days have shown a record temperature in Australia.
Reuters also believes that this temporary shutdown will benefit Asian LNG prices that have been experiencing the lowest phase in the past two years due to mild winter in East Asia.
Currently, Gorgon is one of the world’s largest natural gas projects, with a capacity to produce 15.6 million metric tons/year of LNG from its three trains.