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Puerto Rico’s U.S. rep says LNG summit Thursday is part of effort to become hub

By on March 20, 2019

American LNG Summit takes place Thursday in San Juan’s convention center

SAN JUAN – Puerto Rico’s resident commissioner in the U.S. Congress, Rep. Jenniffer González, and Florida Rep. Ted Yoho will host the 2019 American LNG Summit Thursday, March 21 at the San Juan Convention Center.

“Puerto Rico should be the Caribbean hub for natural gas instead of Jamaica or Trinidad and Tobago,” González told Caribbean Business when asked why the summit was being held in Puerto Rico.

The summit comes two weeks after the island’s Energy Bureau rejected the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s (Prepa) integrated resource plan, which relies on natural gas and renewables, as the island intends to approve a new regulatory framework that would require using renewable energy sources by 2050.

González said liquified natural gas is not incompatible with the regulatory framework because “the important thing is that we are moving away from coal and fossil fuels.”

The congresswoman recently introduced legislation to study the potential for offshore wind energy development in the U.S. territories.

She also noted the recent contract convert two plants at a San Juan power complex to use natural gas, which should result in energy savings once completed.

“This is a summit to analyze the challenges in the market,” she said.

The summit includes the participation of Gov. Ricardo Rosselló; José Ortiz, the executive director of Prepa; Anthony Maceira, executive director of the Puerto Rico Ports Authority; Ricardo Llerandi, executive director Puerto Rico Trade and Export Co.; Manuel Laboy, Secretary of Economic Development; and Johnny Mendéz, speaker of Puerto Rico’s House of Representatives.

Prepa’s Ortiz will speak about the utility’s transformation and discuss an LNG plan.

In addition, the U.S Coast Guard, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), U.S. Department of Transportation, the U.S. Department of State, the Puerto Rico Energy Bureau, private sector leaders and delegations from Spain, Bangladesh, Dominican Republic, Turkey, the European Union and Canada will be participating as well.

At the event, topics such as infrastructure development, the future of gas imports and exports, the regulatory environment, LNG’s role in national security, emerging LNG technologies and opportunities, bunkering and transportation, and Puerto Rico’s outlook in releation to LNG will be discussed.

As part of the summit, the congresswoman and several participants will meet with maritime executives and other companies that operate LNG on the island.

To register for the event, visit https://goo.gl/forms/P9Cnkdi3Sc5R1mqY2

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