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Cove Point clears LNG export hurdle

Dominion Resources won federal approval Wednesday to export liquefied natural gas to countries that don't have free trade agreeemnts with the United States from its terminal at Cove Point in Calvert County.

The Chesapeake Bay terminal, now used occasionally for LNG imports, already had permission from the U.S. Department of Energy to export to nations covered by free-trade agreements. Cove Point is the fourth terminal to get full export permission, with the other three in the Gulf of Mexico.

Dominion Resources, based in Richmond, Va., says it plans to spend $3.4 billion to $3.8 billion converting the terminal for exports, including construction of a gas liquefaction plant. The company applied in March for approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Several environmental groups have petitioned the commission to conduct a thorough environmental review of the project.

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