In 2009, the Group was awarded a 14-year contract to provide Chile with electricity generated using Liquefied Natural Gas regasified at the future Mejillones terminal. The goal set was to supply around 20% of power demand for the north of Chile. The Mejillones LNG terminal site can start.
The Mejillones LNG terminal is a strategically important project for northern Chile. It enables the supply of clean, safe and affordable energy to the local mining industry to help the country to be energy independent.
Constructed in less than 27 months, the Mejillones LNG terminal was commissioned in 2010 with a 162,400 m3 temporary floating LNG storage unit and onshore regasification units to supply gas to mining companies. During this period, the Mejillones LNG terminal has undertaken 34 ship to ship transfers , and acquired an unique experience.
In 2014, the floating storage unit was then replaced by an onshore full containment tank, with an internal tank fabricated from 9% nickel steel. The 187,000 m3 onshore tank was opened on 2010 at a project investment cost of $200 million. The terminal has given Chile greater access to alternative energy sources to meet growing national demand. The Mejillones LNG terminal is a highly technical structure approximately 48 meters high, containing a 100-meter diameter tank, and designed to incorporate more than 500 seismic isolators to resist the most severe earthquakes.
The unloading flow rate for LNG tankers was increased to 10,000 m³ per hour at that time. This terminal offers a high level of operational flexibility enabling it to operate emission-free for several months.
In June 2015, the terminal was provided with a LNG loading point for the tanker trucks to develop retail LNG sector.