BECHTEL announced yesterday it has successfully converted natural gas from coal seams into liquefied natural gas ready for export, a world first.
Loading of the BG Group LNG vessel Methane Rita Andrea is underway at the Queensland Curtis LNG plant, one of three projects Bechtel is simultaneously building on Curtis Island.
"Intricate planning began more than five years ago as our team began working towards developing a new LNG hub in Queensland to service the Asian energy market," said Bechtel's Global LNG general manager Alasdair Cathcart.
"Building three multi-train LNG projects side-by-side, simultaneously on an island will certainly be listed as one of Bechtel's greatest achievements in our 116-year history when they are completed in 2016."
"It's taken 6000 people working on the QCLNG project around the world to bring this first cargo of LNG to reality.
"The significance of this milestone cannot be underestimated. It's a fantastic achievement that has been achieved by a fantastic team," Mr Cathcart said.
"And most importantly, we've done it safely.
"We are committed to zero incidents and our employees across the Curtis Island projects have produced a very impressive safety record, 15 times better than the national industry average.
Bechtel is currently building six production trains on Curtis Island, which will produce about 25 million tonnes of LNG annually when complete in early 2016, the equivalent to powering a city the size of Tokyo with 13 million people.
Bechtel is also the principal downstream contractor for the Chevron-operated Wheatstone Project in Western Australia.
Editor's note: This story first appeared as 'First LNG cargo after five years and incident-free project', which was a misleading headline that has since been changed.