33 CFR § 127.007 - Letter of intent and waterway suitability assessment for waterfront facilities handling LNG or LHG.

§ 127.007 Letter of intent and waterway suitability assessment for waterfront facilities handling LNG or LHG.

(a) An owner or operator intending to build a new facility handling LNG or LHG, or an owner or operator planning new construction to expand marine terminal operations in any facility handling LNG or LHG, where the construction or expansion will result in an increase in the size or frequency of LNG or LHG marine traffic on the waterway associated with a facility, must submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) to the Captain of the Port (COTP) of the zone in which the facility is or will be located. The LOI must meet the requirements in paragraph (c) of this section.

(1) The owner or operator of an LNG facility must submit the LOI to the COTP no later than the date that the owner or operator files a pre-filing request with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) under 18 CFR parts 153 and 157, but, in all cases, at least 1 year prior to the start of construction. The LOI must include the nation of registry for, and the nationality or citizenship of the officers and crew serving on board, vessels transporting LNG that are reasonably anticipated to be servicing the LNG facility.

(2) The owner or operator of an LHG facility must submit the LOI to the COTP no later than the date that the owner or operator files with the Federal or State agency having jurisdiction, but, in all cases, at least 1 year prior to the start of construction.

(b) An owner or operator intending to reactivate an inactive facility must submit an LOI that meets paragraph (c) of this section to the COTP of the zone in which the facility is located.

(1) The owner or operator of an LNG facility must submit the LOI to the COTP no later than the date the owner or operator files a pre-filing request with FERC under 18 CFR parts 153 and 157, but, in all cases, at least 1 year prior to the start of LNG transfer operations.

(2) The owner or operator of an LHG facility must submit the LOI to the COTP no later than the date the owner or operator files with the Federal or State agency having jurisdiction, but, in all cases, at least 1 year prior to the start of LHG transfer operations.

(c) Each LOI must contain -

(1) The name, address, and telephone number of the owner and operator;

(2) The name, address, and telephone number of the Federal, State, or local agency having jurisdiction for siting, construction, and operation;

(3) The name, address, and telephone number of the facility;

(4) The physical location of the facility;

(5) A description of the facility;

(6) The LNG or LHG vessels' characteristics and the frequency of LNG or LHG shipments to or from the facility; and

(7) Charts showing waterway channels and identifying commercial, industrial, environmentally sensitive, and residential areas in and adjacent to the waterway used by the LNG or LHG vessels en route to the facility, within at least 25 kilometers (15.5 miles) of the facility.

(d) The owner or operator who submits an LOI under paragraphs (a) or (b) of this section must notify the COTP in writing within 15 days of any of the following:

(1) There is any change in the information submitted under paragraphs (c)(1) through (c)(7) of this section; or

(2) No LNG or LHG transfer operations are scheduled within the next 12 months.

(e) An owner or operator intending to build a new LNG or LHG facility, or an owner or operator planning new construction to expand marine terminal operations in any facility handling LNG or LHG, where the construction or expansion will result in an increase in the size or frequency of LNG or LHG marine traffic on the waterway associated with a facility, must file or update as appropriate a waterway suitability assessment (WSA) with the COTP of the zone in which the facility is or will be located. The WSA must consist of a Preliminary WSA and a Follow-on WSA. A COTP may request additional information during review of the Preliminary WSA or Follow-on WSA.

(f) The Preliminary WSA must -

(1) Be submitted to the COTP with the LOI; and

(2) Provide an initial explanation of the following -

(i) Port characterization;

(ii) Characterization of the LNG or LHG facility and LNG or LHG tanker route;

(iii) Risk assessment for maritime safety and security;

(iv) Risk management strategies; and

(v) Resource needs for maritime safety, security, and response.

(g) The Follow-on WSA must -

(1) Be submitted to the COTP as follows:

(i) The owner or operator of an LNG facility must submit the Follow-on WSA to the COTP no later than the date the owner or operator files its application with FERC pursuant to 18 CFR parts 153 or 157, or if no application to FERC is required, at least 180 days before the owner or operator begins transferring LNG.

(ii) The owner or operator of an LHG facility must submit the Follow-on WSA to the COTP in all cases at least 180 days before the owner or operator begins transferring LHG.

(2) Contain a detailed analysis of the elements listed in §§ 127.007(f)(2), 127.009(d), and 127.009(e) of this part.

(h) Until the facility begins operation, owners or operators must:

(1) Annually review their WSAs and submit a report to the COTP as to whether changes are required. The deadline for the required annual report should coincide with the date of the COTP's Letter of Recommendation, which indicates review and validation of the Follow-on WSA has been completed.

(2) In the event that revisions to the WSA are needed, report to the COTP the details of the necessary revisions, along with a timeline for completion.

(3) Update the WSA if there are any changes in conditions, such as changes to the port environment, the LNG or LHG facility, or the tanker route, that would affect the suitability of the waterway for LNG or LHG traffic.

(4) Submit a final report to the COTP at least 30 days, but not more than 60 days, prior to the start of operations.

(i) An owner or operator intending to construct a new LNG fuel facility or modify any LNG fuel facility, or reactivate an inactive LNG fuel facility, may comply with § 127.008 in lieu of meeting the requirements in this section.

[USCG-2007-27022, 75 FR 29426, May 26, 2010, as amended by USCG-2019-0444, 87 FR 5689, Feb. 2, 2022]

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