NextDecade takes aim at Texas City for LNG

The Woodlands-based NextDecade is honing in on a Texas City location near Galveston for its latest effort to build a multibillion-dollar liquefied natural gas export facility.

NextDecade, which has focused on an LNG export project in Brownsville, said it signed lease agreements for a nearly 1,000-acre site at Texas City’s Shoal Point.

The move comes after the Point Isabel school board in Brownsville rejected tax abatement incentives for NextDecade’s Rio Grande LNG project there, as well as for the competing Annova LNG project in Brownsville that’s owned by Chicago-based Exelon Corp. Residents and environmental activists teamed up to oppose the projects. Both NextDecade and Annova have vowed to proceed in Brownsville without the tax breaks.

Still, NextDecade also now has plans for Texas City to export the cheap and abundant natural gas supplies produced from Texas shale. The company is working to attract additional financing for both projects.

“Now more than ever, the U.S. has the potential to benefit from the incredible natural gas resources we have right here in Texas,” said NextDecade CEO Kathleen Eisbrenner in the announcement. “The U.S. is the most competitive source of LNG in the world and NextDecade is looking forward to bringing new supply to the global marketplace from the heart of the global energy industry.”

The Shoal Point acreage offers port access and the potential to expand. The site also benefits from its proximity to nearby natural gas pipelines, the company said.