THE first tank load of liquefied natural gas processed on Curtis Island is on schedule to be shipped before the end of the year.
Gas company QCLNG will be the first of three companies to ship LNG from its processing plant - a project that has taken four years to build, at a cost of more than $20 billion.
The Observer can reveal the first LNG tanker Methane Rita Andrea is making its way down the Queensland coast to collect gas from the QCLNG wharf.
Yesterday afternoon it was moving at a rate of 1.5knots, and was off the east coast of Cape York Peninsula.
According to the Gladstone Ports Corporation's shipping schedule, the tanker will arrive at the wharf on Saturday.
However, the gas company has not confirmed if this will be the actual arrival date.
A spokesman for QCLNG was tight-lipped on the milestone on Wednesday, but confirmed the shipment was still expected to leave the island before the end of the year.
Parent company BG Group's interim executive chairman, Andrew Gould, last week said his company was "on the verge of delivering the world's first large-scale project using natural gas from coal seams as a feedstock for LNG".
Last week it was also confirmed BG Group would sell its 540km pipeline (from the Surat Basin) to Australian gas transporting giant APA Group, at a cost of almost $6 billion.
Methane Rita Andrea:
- The 284m-long tanker was built in 2006.
- It flies the Bermuda flag.
- It has a beam of 43m, weighs 95,753 tonnes and has a draught of 10.5m.