Safety & Environment at the Dunkirk LNG Terminal
Dunkerque LNG's commitments to safety are applied at every step: from Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) transport all the way to storage.
LNG transportation is ensured by methane tankers designed according to very precise safety standards, among them:
- reinforced hulls and double-walled storage tanks
- an insulating coating that limits evaporation of the gas
- very sensitive leak monitoring and detection devices
- regular trainings and refresher courses for the crew
Access to the boats from the port also follows strict regulation based on several studies (nautical risks, navigation, traffic and hydraulics) to ensure that methane tanker navigation takes place under optimum safety conditions.
After the ships dock, the LNG is unloaded with a highly secured pumping system:
- a minimum of intervention
- at least two people present in addition to surveillance by instruments, detectors and cameras in the control room
- unloading stops if the vessel moves unexpectedly during this phase
The LNG is then stored in a heavy-duty steel reservoir covered by reinforced concrete. This tank was designed to be resilient in the case of natural disasters, accidents or malevolent acts.
Other checks and security standards have been established, in particular those linked to fires from leaks:
- emergency plans (internal operations plan, external emergency services…)
- firefighting equipment (fire pumps, water curtains, water cannons…)
- continuous monitoring of facilities thanks to control mechanisms as well as process and site monitoring screens
In the summer of 2015, in preparation of the first filling of the reservoir and its subsequent use, orders (signed by the Mairie de Loon-Plage and the Préfecutre Maritime de la Manche) made new access restrictions official. Thus, access to the beach within 300 m of the terminal is forbidden as well as navigation within 300 m of the wharf and dikes is prohibited. The goal: in the case of an incident at the terminal, outside people are less affected.
Also note: On February 1, 2016, an access agreement to the Clipon site was signed between Dunkerque LNG, the Grand Port Maritime de Dunkerque, the Conseil Départemental du Nord and the associations and government environmental actors. This allows environmental actors to pursue their observation studies while respecting constraints of the methane terminal's operation.
The objective of Dunkerque LNG is to maintain high environmental standards. This commitment is accomplished mainly through the environmental enrichment of the site's undeveloped areas – active or passive grassy dune restauration and colonisation by flora and fauna.
The site's landscape integration was carefully planned and the methane terminal will be conform with sound nuisance regulation. Finally, Dunkerque MNG is committed to limiting the thermic footprint of the terminal's waste water.
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