No LNG Peakshaver for Maine – PUC Declines to Fund Project

The Maine Public Utilities Commission (PUC) recently declined to help fund a new LNG peakshaving facility in the state, concluding it would not reduce consumer natural gas and electricity prices. Er, a, what’s an LNG peakshaver anyway? Good question! According to industrial engineering company Fives, “LNG peak shaving units are used for storing surplus natural gas, so as to be able to meet the requirements of peak consumption later during the different seasons. Gas distribution companies and local administrations use this application to be more flexible in their consumption of natural gas. Thanks to these Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) peak shaving units, they will be able to face periods of peak consumption during cold winter times and extreme summer heat. Peak shaving can also be used to keep natural gas prices from soaring during periods of high gas consumption.” That helps. They are small LNG plants that kick in when demand for natural gas exceeds supply. There are 44 such peakshaving tanks at 29 locations in the northeast. Last September the Maine legislature authorized the PUC to spend $25 million on leasing capacity at a peakshaving plant, if they could find the right plant to do it. A number of projects were submitted, and the PUC said nyet–they don’t like any of them and don’t think a peakshaver will be needed going forward…

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