Process Overview

Sea Port Oil Terminal License Application

On January 31, 2019, the Maritime Administration (MARAD) and United States Coast Guard (USCG) received an application from SPOT Terminal Services LLC (Applicant) seeking a Federal license under the Deepwater Port Act of 1974 (DWPA), as amended, to own, construct, operate, and eventually decommission the Sea Port Oil Terminal (SPOT) Project (Project), a deepwater port, for the export of crude oil to the global market.

The Applicant is proposing the SPOT Project in the Gulf of Mexico to export domestically produced crude oil. Use of the deepwater port would include the loading of various grades of crude oil at flow rates of up to 85,000 barrels per hour. The SPOT deepwater port would allow for up to two (2) very large crude carriers (VLCCs) or other crude oil carriers to moor at single point mooring buoys and connect with the deepwater port via floating connecting crude oil hoses and floating vapor recovery hoses. The maximum frequency of loading VLCCs or other crude oil carriers would be 2 million barrels per day, 365 days per year.

The information repository planned for the SPOT Project will be the Federal Docket Management System ( Copies of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Supplemental Draft EIS are available online and copies of the Final EIS will be made available online and at local information repositories in the Freeport and Lake Jackson, Texas areas, including the following:

Freeport Branch Public Library
410 N Brazosport Blvd, Freeport, TX 77541

Lake Jackson Branch Public Library
250 Circle Way St, Lake Jackson, TX 77566

Sea Port Oil Terminal Project Proposed Action

In accordance with the Deepwater Port Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, and applicable regulations, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and the Maritime Administration (MARAD) have prepared an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Proposed Action.

MARAD may approve, approve with conditions, or deny the license for the proposed SPOT Project. The EIS will assist the Maritime Administrator in deciding whether to approve, approve with conditions, or deny the license for the Proposed Action.

Deepwater Port Action and Licensing Process

The Deepwater Port Act establishes a licensing system for ownership, construction, operation, and eventual decommissioning of deepwater ports located beyond the seaward boundaries of a State that are used to import or export oil or natural gas to or from the U.S. The Maritime Administration (MARAD) is responsible for licensing deepwater ports. The licensing process mandates compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act.

NEPA Process for Deepwater Port Applications

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) was passed in 1969 and has two major objectives:

  1. To ensure that Federal agencies consider the potential environmental effects of proposed programs, projects, and actions before initiating them.
  2. To inform the public and to encourage and facilitate public involvement in Federal agency activities that may affect the quality of the human environment.

Guidelines for Federal agencies to implement NEPA were established in regulations by the President’s Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) in 40 CFR § 1500-1508. In addition, the Maritime Administration and the United States Coast Guard has issued implementing procedures and policy for considering environmental impacts under NEPA and related laws.

Documents prepared under NEPA can include a Categorical Exclusion, an Environmental Assessment, or an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). When a Proposed Action has the potential for significant impacts on the quality of the human environment, an EIS, the most detailed analysis conducted under NEPA, is prepared.

Deepwater Port Record of Decision, License Conditions, and Post Licensing Requirements

The Maritime Administration (MARAD) issues a Record of Decision for each deepwater port license application. MARAD’s decision to approve, approve with conditions, or deny the license will be based on the nine criteria contained in Section l 503(c) of the Deepwater Port Act.


Interactive Project Map

Public Involvement
and Virtual Meetings

An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is a detailed public document with the primary purpose to ensure the requirements and goals of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) are incorporated into Federal programs and actions and provides sufficient information for the decision-maker (in this case, the Maritime Administration) to make an informed decision. The Draft EIS is the first public version of the EIS document and was published on January 31, 2020.

We are committed to providing meaningful public involvement in the NEPA process, while also ensuring protection of human health during the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) public health emergency. MARAD and USCG held a public comment meeting in Lake Jackson, Texas, on February 26, 2020, to provide citizens an opportunity to make oral and written comments concerning the Draft EIS. A Federal Register notice was published on May 1, 2020 (85 Fed. Reg. 85 [May 1, 2020], 25507–25508) to notify the public of a 30-day extension of the public comment period, ending May 31, 2020. Subsequently, MARAD determined that additional public engagement of Environmental Justice (EJ) communities and Limited English Proficiency (LEP) persons in the environmental review process was warranted for the SPOT Project. The Draft EIS identified minority or low-income populations that meet one or more criteria for environmental justice analysis and the EJ communities along the pipeline route within Harris County would be disproportionately affected, at least temporarily, by construction impacts. Additionally, the Project's potential impacts include areas containing LEP populations sufficient to warrant translated/interpreted engagement. Therefore, MARAD published a Supplemental Draft EIS that took into account comments received from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the public regarding EJ communities and LEP persons to provide adequate opportunity for EJ communities and LEP persons to participate in the process. These comments, as well as those received during the public comment meeting in Lake Jackson, Texas, on February 26, 2020, the public comment extension period ending May 31, 2020, and on the docket (MARAD-2019-0011), were considered in the development of the Supplemental Draft EIS.

The Supplemental Draft EIS was published in the Federal Register on October 29, 2021 (86 Fed. Reg. 207, 60093-60095) and ads ran twice during the comment period in the following newspapers: The Facts, Alvin Sun, The Houston Chronicle, Pearland Journal, The Daily News Galveston County, The Vietnam Post, La Prensa de Houston, La Voz de Houston, Vietnam Daily News, and La Informacion. MARAD and the USCG held a virtual public meeting on November 16, 2021 to provide the public an opportunity to make oral and written comments concerning the Supplemental Draft EIS. Transcripts of the meeting are available on the docket, located at, docket number MARAD-2019-0011.

The Final EIS addresses comments received on the SDEIS. The Final EIS was published in the Federal Register on July 29, 2022. MARAD and the USCG are hosting a virtual final hearing on August 23, 2022, to provide the public an opportunity to make oral and written comments concerning the Final EIS. The meeting transcript will be made available on the docket.

The FEIS public comment period closes on September 12, 2022.


Clicking the links below will leave the SPOT NEPA Process website and take you to the federal docket for SPOT, located at  The docket number for the SPOT Project is MARAD-2019-0011.

Primary Purpose of the SPOT Project SPOT Community Benefits SPOT Onshore Facilities Poster

Contact the Applicant


Sea Port Oil Terminal Project Overview

SPOT Terminal Services LLC seeks approval to own, construct, operate, and eventually decommission a deepwater port to for the export of domestically produced crude oil. The proposed Sea Port Oil Terminal (SPOT) deepwater port would be located in Federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico, in Galveston Area lease blocks 463 and A-59, approximately 27.2 to 30.8 nautical miles off the coast of Brazoria County, Texas, in water depths of approximately 115 feet. The onshore components of the SPOT Project would include the existing Enterprise Crude Houston Terminal, new Oyster Creek Terminal, and onshore pipelines from the existing terminal to the mean high-water mark at the shore crossing. The offshore components would include the SPOT deepwater port and connected facilities, including the subsea pipelines, to the mean high-water line on shore. See the Resources link for more details.

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Formal Comment Submission

If you have a comment you would like added to the formal docket please click the button below to visit
Link to

Draft Environmental
Impact Statement

Supplemental Draft
Environmental Impact Statement


Final Environmental
Impact Statement


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