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San Diego-based Sempra Energy has announced it will partner with the Mitsubishi Corporation and its Mitsui & Co., Ltd. to develop and construct a natural gas liquefaction export facility at an operations site for Sempra subsidiary Cameron LNG in Hackberry, Louisiana. The completed plant will be able to export about 1.7 billion cubic feet of gas per day.

“These agreements with Mitsubishi and Mitsui represent a significant step forward in the development of a liquefaction facility at our Louisiana LNG terminal to support international natural gas markets,” said Sempra president Mark A. Snell in a release.

Recent local developments, however, may make Mitsubishi seem a slightly odd choice for a construction partner in building the estimated $6 billion facility.

At the San Onofre Nuclear Generating station near San Diego’s northern border, both nuclear reactors have been shut down for over two months as inspectors investigate premature failure and excess wear in scores of tubes that are part of new steam generators installed in 2009 by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries at a cost of over $670 million. Sempra’s San Diego Gas & Electric owns a 20% stake in the plant.

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