United Bronwsville, Los Fresnos Chamber of Commerce, the South Texas Economic Energy Roundtable (STEER) are just a few of the local businesses in the Rio Grande Valley that are showing their support for the $10 billion dollar Annova LNG Brownsville project, that is the new liquidized natural gas facility built for exports in the port of Brownsville.
“We’re very excited to be here mainly because we think that this project is going to be an economically fantastic opportunity for Brownsville,” says David Chung, President of Annova LNG.
Economically fantastic means bringing to the valley 675 jobs over a four year period, roughly $324 million in labor income… and the 165 permanent jobs once the facility begins to operate.
“Exporting jobs are some of the higher paying jobs and that’s really where we need t o move our local and regional coming towards being able to attract those exporting industries, they are able to offer higher wages to our citizens,” says Mike Gonzalez, Director of United Brownsville.
While others like the South Padre Island Chamber of Commerce consider the indirect job creation as the biggest impact.
“Whoever is here and has those jobs is going to spend money in the valley and they’re going to buy homes, or build homes, and they’re going to go to restaurants and shop and supplies,” says Roxanne Guenzel with SPI Chamber of Commerce.
Still it is not a smooth sailing project, in order to accomplish the goal of beginning operations in 2020, 26 federal state and local permits and licenses must be acquired as well as addressing public concerns.
“We are working with each of them to ensure that we’re abiding by all of the safety rules and regulations, minimizing environmental impact,” says Chung.
And in order to continue addressing an array of issues and concerns, Annova LNG along with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission have opened up discussion to the public.