Centrica Given Green Light for New Gas Terminal

Centrica PLC has received planning approval for a new GBP60-million onshore natural gas terminal at Barrow-in-Furness, which it will operate on behalf of Burlington Resources Inc. The terminal will be located adjacent to Centrica's existing North and South Morecambe terminals and process gas from three of the Rivers fields in the eastern part of the Irish Sea.

"This is good news for our upstream operations, which gives the go-ahead for a new terminal at Barrow and fits our strategy of making the best economic use of our existing infrastructure by attracting third-party gas business, allowing us to process gas on behalf of Burlington ," Alan Bennett, Centrica's director of operations services, stated. The gas compression and treatment plant, to be constructed by U.K. civil engineering company Costain Group is part of the development of the Rivers Fields, which are estimated to contain recoverable resources of between 350 billion and 400 billion cubic feet of natural gas. Offshore gas production is expected to reach approximately 120 million cubic feet a day in 2004. Burlington Resources' total investment in the Rivers Fields project will be approximately GBP185 million.

Burlington Resources signed a GBP55 million in February with the U.K.'s Rivers Joint Venture for offshore development of the Calder field in the Rivers complex.

Rivers Joint Venture - involving Allseas U.K. Ltd. and Technip-Coflexip, Genesis Oil and Gas Consultants Ltd. - will build an unmanned offshore platform and a pipeline connecting the platform to the onshore terminal at Barrow-in-Furness.