In an effort to bypass project-stalling terrestrial opposition, Exxon yesterday said it plans a $1 billion floating liquid natural-gas refinery 20 miles off New Jersey's coast, Market Watch reports. The project, which could open by 2015, would supply enough natural gas for 5 million residential customers in New York and New Jersey. Exxon says the plant won’t be visible from shore.
The project already has drawn favorable response from environmentalists who believe natural gas is cleaner than coal, and support the offshore location as safer from terrorism. The facility, called BlueOcean Energy, would receive twice-weekly seaborne deliveries of liquid natural gas, convert it to natural gas and pipe it to New Jersey. Exxon plans three similar refineries around the world.