In a big step for the environment, local jobs and fuel security, Premier Mark McGowan last week opened Woodside’s new Pluto LNG truck loading facility.
It will draw LNG directly from Woodside's existing Pluto LNG production and storage facilities for distribution by truck to the Pilbara, Kimberley and Gascoyne regions.
Trucked LNG will also be used to supply coastal marine vessels, including the LNG-powered Siem Thiima which joined Woodside’s fleet in 2017.
During construction, over 60 workers, many of them local, were employed on the project and some $4 million worth of fabrication contracts were awarded to local businesses. In addition, 85 per cent of the financial investment allocated for the project was spent in Western Australia.
The initial capacity of the facility is 100,000 tonnes per annum, based on seven truck loadings per day during daylight hours. It will initially be able to deliver seven LNG truck loadings per day, each one transporting the equivalent of more than 80,000 litres of diesel.
This will result in a reduction of more than 120,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions each year, and is the equivalent of taking more than 25,000 cars off the road.
Around three billion litres of diesel are imported into the Pilbara every year, mainly for the mining industry. In addition, the ships exporting iron ore to international markets from the Pilbara consume approximately five billion litres of heavy fuel oil annually.
During combustion, LNG produces roughly 40 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than diesel and produces negligible emissions of sulphur, mercury, and particulates.
So, selling it locally reduces expensive diesel imports, employs local people, uses our own resources, increases fuel security and is much better for the environment.