The consortium behind the Port Kembla Gas Terminal is looking for government approval to boost capacity to deal with higher-than-expected heating needs in winter.
The move from Australian Industrial Energy to tweak the government approval for the terminal - which would sit in the harbour alongside the coal terminal - is to help cope with high demand for liquefied natural gas.
An AIE spokesman said the level of LNG the market wanted during winter was greater than expected and, to meet that demand, the terminal would go past the approved volumes in the development consent.
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"AIE confirms that it has advised the NSW government that, in the face of substantially higher customer demand for gas supply and throughput capacity at its Port Kembla Gas Terminal, AIE will be seeking a modification to its existing development consent for an expanded terminal capacity to accommodate a winter peak throughput of circa 750 terrajoules per day," an AIE spokesman said.
The increase in capacity would result in more shipping movements in and out of Port Kembla as LNG tankers deliver gas to the terminal.
At this stage there is no figure on how many extra tankers will be required but the AIE spokesman said the number would be tiny in context of the annual overall movements in the harbour.
The terminal relies on a floating storage regasification unit - essentially a large ship that stays moored at the port - to store the LNG that comes in via tankers.
The spokesman said there would be no increase to the size of that unit to deal with the extra capacity.
"But it does require some re-engineering and changes to pipeline connection capacity," the spokesman said.
The initial plan had the Port Kembla terminal up and running by late next year.
The spokesman wouldn't say whether that timeline would now be extended but said they didn't expect any commercial impact.
"While the planning modification process will take some time, AIE remains confident that it can develop the project in advance of customer needs," the spokesman said.