NGS’ NG/LNG SNAPSHOT – August 1–15, 2022

National News Internatonal News


City Gas Distribution & Auto LPG

Government diverts gas from industries to IGL, MGL to balance CNG, cooking gas rates

The Central government will be diverting some of the natural gas from industries to city gas operators like Indraprastha Gas Ltd in Delhi and Mahanagar Gas Ltd of Mumbai to check the spiralling CNG and piped cooking gas prices.

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The oil ministry in a notification issued on Wednesday, August 10, amended an earlier order to increase the allocation of domestically produced gas to city gas operators.  The allocation for the city gas operators like IGL and MGL has increased from 7.5 million standard cubic meters per day to 20.78 mmscmd.

As per the oil ministry, the increased allocation will meet 94% of the demand for CNG supplies to automobiles and piped cooking gas to households in the country. Earlier, about 83% of the demand was met and the remaining was met through the import of LNG by GAIL. City gas operators complained against the mechanism as it meant using high-priced imported LNG, which led to frequent CNG and piped natural gas price hikes.

Under the previous dispensation, GAIL would average out the price of domestically available gas with the LNG and supply fuel at a pooled price. This price for the current month came to $10.58 per million British thermal units. After the amendment, the gas price may come down to $7.5.

GAIL will make an increased allocation to the city gas operators by cutting supplies from LPG and petrochemical plants. This month, the price of cooking gas piped to household kitchens in the national capital and adjoining cities was hiked by ₹2.63 per unit. At present, Piped cooking gas cost ₹50.59 per standard cubic meter. In Mumbai, Mahanagar Gas Ltd hiked CNG price by ₹6 per kg and PNG by ₹4 a unit. Domestic production of natural gas is insufficient to meet demand and India imports roughly half of its needs in the form of liquefied natural gas (LNG).

While the price of domestically produced natural gas was increased to USD 6.10 per million British thermal units for the six-month period beginning April 1, international LNG rates shot to record high in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. LNG in the spot or current market currently costs upwards of $30.

GAIL mixes about 2.5-3 million standard cubic meters per day of LNG with volumes available from domestic fields for supplying city gas operators like IGL and MGL. The pooled rate is fixed every month. For August, the pooled price is $10.52 per mmBtu, up from $8.95 in the previous month.

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City gas distributors face uncertainty on high gas prices

Spiralling global prices of natural gas amid a surge in demand from Europe and lower supplies from Russia is posing a serious challenge for India’s gas industry.

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The industry was until now in a sweet spot with growth spurred by strong demand for the cleaner fuel and comparatively cheaper gas prices.

However, the prevailing higher prices sparked by geopolitical issues since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine are now set to hit consumer demand as well as the profitability of Indian gas suppliers.

US benchmark Henry Hub natural gas spot price at over $8 per mmBtu (million British thermal units) has more than doubled on a year-to-date basis. Prices are likely to stay elevated considering the squeeze in Russian supplies. Also, approaching winters and consequent spike in demand from Europe is likely to maintain pressure on spot gas prices, at least till the winter season recedes or till supplies from Russia improve.

The prevailing high international gas prices and consequent increase in domestic gas prices, as well as spot gas prices, are negative factors for city gas distribution (CGD) firms. These companies had continued benefiting from rising demand and volume growth in a lower gas price environment and enjoyed good margins, too. However, the latest scenario has raised concerns on their sales and profit margins.

Price hikes taken by the companies to pass on the higher costs are, on one hand, likely to impact demand and hence, volume growth, said analysts. The strong high double-digit growth in volumes seen earlier may be difficult now.

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Natural Gas/ Pipelines/ Company News


House panel suggests creation of mechanisms for boosting gas pipeline infrastructure

The parliamentary standing committee on petroleum and natural gas has suggested that the Union government create a project monitoring mechanism with relevant stakeholders for time-bound completion of gas pipeline infrastructure.

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In its 15th report, the panel, headed by a member of Lok Sabha Sh. Ramesh Bidhuri, asked the ministry of petroleum and natural gas to come up with a consultative mechanism to resolve bottlenecks plaguing pipelines and simultaneously work towards developing software so that stakeholders can participate and contribute to the development of a single window system for providing various permissions for development of city gas distribution and pipeline infrastructure.

The panel noted that pipelines are being laid across the country under the National Gas Grid project to transport gas and spur lines from these trunk pipelines are being drawn to take gas to end-user. India has about 20,227 km of operational pipelines and an estimated 15,500 km is expected to be added by 2024-25.

The committee, although impressed with the expansion of pipeline infrastructure, expressed concerns that work on Haldia-Jagdishpur Pipeline, Kochi-Koottanad-Bengaluru-Mangaluru Pipeline(KKMPL) and Angul-Srikakulam Pipeline has been delayed for various reasons like demands for higher compensation by farmers, issues of right of use (RoU), forest clearance, among others.

The panel also said that the petroleum ministry in coordination with other related ministries should frame rules and regulations for enforcement on safety aspects for the oil and gas sector and should be brought under the supervision and regulation of PNGRB so as to avoid overlapping mandates among various agencies and a centralised framework.

It asked the ministry to take steps with respect to manpower issues and review rules at the earliest to bring uniformity in implementing safety standards in petroleum sector.

The suggestions come amid volatility in global energy markets and concerns over supplies in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine crisis. The recommendations gain significance as India imports around 85% of its energy requirements and is aims to attain energy security with higher domestic production.

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TCR Engineering executing 84 gas pipeline testing projects: President Rohit Bafna

The Mumbai-headquartered company is into quality testing of components used in various projects related to sectors like steel, automobile, chemical processing, defence, electronics, nuclear power and capital goods, among others.

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Maharashtra-based TCR Engineering is executing 84 gas pipeline testing projects across the country. The Mumbai-headquartered company is into quality testing of components used in various projects related to sectors like steel, automobile, chemical processing, defence, electronics, nuclear power and capital goods, among others.

The projects include City Gas Distribution (CGD) and slurry gas pipeline projects of leading oil & gas, construction, infrastructure and steel companies. TCR is working to undertake radiography testing and NDT on cross country projects. Paradip-Somnathpur-Haldia Pipeline, Paradip-Haldia-Durgapur LPG Pipeline, Koyali-Ahmednagar-Solapur Pipeline as well as several CGDs.

Qualified radiography and other NDT services are also provided on the four spreads of the 690 kilometres long Srikakulam-Angul project which is an onshore gas pipeline from Andhra Pradesh to Orissa. When asked about the cost involved, he replied, one per cent of the total cost of any infrastructure project is slated towards quality assurance, inspection and testing.

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Mahanagar Gas Q1 PAT down 9% YoY as natural gas costs surge

Mahanagar Gas reported 9.25% fall in net profit to Rs 185.20 crore despite a 136.36% jump in net revenue from operations to Rs 1,454.75 crore in Q1 FY23 over Q1 FY22.

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Cost of natural gas or cost of conversion into CNG for retailing, jumped to Rs 1,004.53 crore from Rs 191.04 crore last year.

EBIDTA declined by 6.07% to Rs 285.55 crore in Q1 FY23 from Rs 303.99 crore in Q1 FY22. EBIDTA margin was 19.63% in Q1 FY23 as against 49.39% in Q1 FY22.

Total volumes jumped by 43.76% to 313.75 SCM million in Q1 FY23 from 218.25 million in Q1 FY22. CNG sales volume stood at 231.09 SCM million (up 63.7% YoY) while total PNG sales volume aggregated to 82.66 SCM million (up 7.15% YoY) during the period under review.

There is overall growth in volumes compared to corresponding quarter in the previous year (which was impacted due to 2nd wave of COVID). However, reduction in EBIDTA is mainly due to higher gas cost in the current quarter, the company said in a statement.

MGL is one of India’s leading natural gas distribution companies. It has a natural gas distribution network in Mumbai and its adjoining areas. GAIL (India) (Maharatna Company of Govt. of India) is the promoter of MGL and holds 32.50% stake in the company.

The scrip advanced 3.82% to currently trade at Rs 819.95 on the BSE.

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Petronet LNG’s profit up 10% in April-June

India’s biggest LNG importer Petronet LNG on August 5 reported a 10.2% year/year increase in net profit for the three months to June 30 (Q1) thanks to high LNG prices and better operational optimisation.

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Petronet’s net profit in Q1 came in at 7.01bn rupees ($88mn) compared with 6.36bn rupees in the same quarter of last year. The net profit dropped 6.5% quarter/quarter, however. Petronet reported its highest ever turnover of 142.6bn rupees in Q1.

The state-owned company operates two import and regasification terminals: Dahej in west India and Kochi in south India. Last month, the 17.5mn metric tons/year capacity Dahej terminal received its 3000th cargo.

During Q1, the Dahej terminal processed 196 trillion Btu of LNG versus 194 trillion Btu in the corresponding quarter.  The overall LNG volume processed by the company in Q1 was 208 trillion Btu compared with 209 trillion Btu a year ago.

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Underground natural gas deposits detected in Puri, Odisha

Underground natural gas deposits were detected at two places in Gop block of Puri district during a survey carried out by Oil India Limited. In the preliminary phase, for extraction of the resources, 37 land owners of eight acres of land identified in Kusupur Mouza have been paid a compensation of Rs 1 crore.

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Last year, extensive exploratory drilling and surveys had been carried out at an investment of Rs 1248 crore, including Rs.220 crore in seismic surveys, at five coastal blocks and eight districts i.e. Puri, Khordha, Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Jajpur, Bhadrak, and Balasore.

After surveying 3000 square km of five blocks, oil and natural gas deposits were found at two places in Gop block. Eight acres of land at Kusupur Mouza and another eight acres of land at Chitra Mouza under Mahalpada panchayat were identified through satellite map.

After surveying various coastal districts, Oil India appointed a survey firm Alphageo (India) Limited of Hyderabad to search for underground natural fuel in Astaranga, Kakatpur, Konark, and Gop areas of Puri district.

In the initial phase, 100 feet boring was done at various places identified through satellite images and dynamite blasting was done inside the holes. Sensors were used to photograph the ripples created by the blasting. Similar seismic surveys had been done at around 100 places in Puri district.

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Policy Matters/ Gas Pricing/ Others

Piped cooking gas price hiked by ₹ 2.63 per unit in Delhi-NCR

The price of cooking gas piped to household kitchens in the national capital and adjoining cities was hiked by ₹ 2.63 per unit on Friday, the second increase in rates in less than two weeks.

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Piped cooking gas in Delhi will now cost ₹ 50.59 per standard cubic meter, as against ₹ 47.96 previously, according to Indraprastha Gas Ltd – the firm that retails CNG to automobiles and piped cooking gas to households in the national capital and adjoining towns. This is the second hike in prices in less than two weeks. Rates were last revised on July 26, by ₹ 2.1 per scm.

The increase follows the government mandating the use of costlier imported LNG to meet incremental demand. State-owned GAIL averages out the rates of gas produced locally with the imported one before supplying to city gas retailers like IGL.

Similar increases in piped cooking gas (called piped natural gas or PNG) have been affected by city gas retailers in other parts of the country. However, IGL has not increased CNG price and it continues to cost ₹ 75.61 per kg.

IGL said PNG in Noida, Greater Noida and Ghaziabad, which adjoin Delhi, will cost ₹ 50.46 per scm, while in Gurugram it will be priced at ₹ 48.79 per scm.

While the price of domestically produced natural gas was increased to USD 6.10 per million British thermal units for the six month period beginning April 1, international LNG rates shot to record high in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. LNG in the spot or current market currently costs upwards of USD 30.

GAIL mixes about 2.5-3 million standard cubic meters per day of LNG with volumes available from domestic fields for supply city gas operators like IGL and MGL. The pooled rate is fixed every month. For August, the pooled price is USD 10.52 per mmBtu, up from USD 8.95 in the previous month.

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CNG cost up by Rs 6 from Rs 110/kg in Nagpur city, highest in India

The cost of CNG in the city is Rs 116 per kg which is the highest in the country. The rate is also Rs 10 more than a litre of petrol. In Nagpur, CNG is distributed by Haryana City Gas (KCE) Private Ltd (HCG).

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Regular customers at HCG’s station at Wadi said the rate was Rs 110 per kg a day ago. On Tuesday, August 02, the price of petrol was Rs 106.05 per litre in the city.

CNG was available at Rs 80 in Mumbai and below Rs 93 per kg in the rest of India. In Nagpur, around 5 metric tonne (MT) of CNG is sold every day. On March 29, PNGRB had issued a license to HCG for Nagpur district and the company was planning to open 700 pumps in eight years.

HCG has taken over four CNG stations set up by Rawmatt Industries Pvt Ltd in the district around one and a half months ago. HCG general manager (commercial) Varun Chaturvedi said the rates will come down once the company begins to get gas from GAIL Limited through pipeline.

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CNG, PNG get costlier as GAIL increases natural gas prices by 18%

The price of natural gas supplied by government owned natural gas explorer and producer GAIL has also been hiked. Natural gas prices have rallied 18% to $10.5 per mmBtu in monthly revision from Monday, August 01.

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It is worth mentioning here that CNG prices have jumped 74% in Delhi and 62% in Mumbai in a year and are expected to rise further.

Whole until now, cheaper domestic natural gas has helped in keeping CNG rates under check as against heavily taxed petrol and diesel for years in the country. But higher CNG rates could now mean a slowdown in the sales of gas-powered cars that have set new records in recent years.

In August last year, domestic natural gas price, determined by a government-set formula linked to average rates at international hubs, was $1.79 per mmBtu. It increased to $2.9 last October and $6.1 this April.

Since domestic output wasn’t enough to meet the growing demand by city gas players, the government directed GAIL to import gas to meet the shortfall. City gas companies’ entire requirement is now being met by GAIL but the price charged is the blend of domestic and imported gas.

The blended rate, which varies every month based on the cost of imported gas, has risen from $8.9 in July to $10.5 in August.

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GGL hiked CNG price by more than Rs 5 in Lucknow & Unnao

Green Gas Limited (GGL), the Indian oil subsidiary has hiked CNG price by Rs 5.3 per kg in Lucknow and Unnao. From Monday 6am (August 1), consumers have to pay Rs 96.10 per kg in the state capital and Rs 97.55 per kg in Unnao.

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This is the third hike of CNG price in the current financial year. In July, CNG cost was Rs 90.80/kg for Lucknow and Rs 92.25 for Unnao. In May, GGL hiked price by Rs 2 following which CNG cost was Rs 87.80 per kg in Lucknow and Unnao. In April, the CNG cost was Rs 84.25 per kg in both cities.

Similarly, domestic PNG price for Lucknow has been hiked by Rs 4. This is also the third hike in the current financial year. From August 1, consumers have to pay Rs 56.20/SCM. Earlier on July 1, GGL had hiked PNG by Rs 2.40 taking the cost Rs 52.20/SCM. In May, they hiked price by Rs 2.80 costing PNG Rs 49.80, while in April PNG cost was Rs 47.

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MGL hikes CNG price by Rs 6/kg, PNG by Rs 4 a unit with immediate effect

The price revision comes amidst rising prices of the natural gas at source both internationally as well as for domestically drilled gas.

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Within a month, city gas distributor Mahanagar Gas (MGL) has announced the second price hike of Rs 6 per kilogram for CNG and by Rs 4 a unit for piped natural gas with immediate effect.

The price revision comes amidst rising prices of the natural gas at source both internationally as well as for domestically drilled gas. Rising prices have forced suppliers and distributors to cut down on industrial supplies since the past many weeks.

This is the sixth price hike since April this year. The utility said the price hike is to meet the shortfall in domestic gas allocation, as it forced to source additional market-priced natural gas to cater to the increasing requirement of CNG and PNG.

The last increase was effected on July 12 when the state-run utility hiked the retail price of CNG by Rs 6 per kilogram and PNG by Rs 3/SCM.

The Centre had increased the price of domestic and imported natural gas by over 110% from April 01. This had completely offset the steep price reduction announced by the state by way of slashing VAT on these fuels to 3.5% from 13.5% from April 01.

Despite liberalising the energy sector, the government still controls both price and supply of natural gas to a large extent and prices and supply allocation is decided in advance twice a year. The April 01 hike is valid till end-September and the next revision will be announced from October 01.

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LNG Use / LNG Development and Shipping

India’s Petronet delays plan for 1mtp LNG deal amid high prices

India’s top gas importer Petronet LNG has pushed back plans for a 1 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) liquefied natural gas (LNG) import deal after a surge in global prices, its head of finance Sh. Vinod Kumar Mishra said.

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Petronet is currently negotiation with Qatar for extension of its 7.5 mtpa long term LNG deal to beyond 2028. The company has to complete renegotiation with Qatar for extension to the deal by end-2023, he said, adding Petronet could seek additional volumes from Qatar or some other player.

Petronet wants a 1 mtpa deal for small industrial users. Petronet’s managing director Sh. A.K. Singh in May said that the company was looking for 0.75-1 million tonne of LNG in immediate term to meet the rising demand.

India’s top gas distributor GAIL (India) Ltd on Thursday, August 06, said it failed to award its recent tender seeking 0.75 mtpa LNG under a 10-year deal.

Sh. Mishra also said Petronet’s Singapore-based unit has not yet started spot trading of LNG as prices are too high. He said next year global LNG prices could ease after an end to Russia Ukraine crisis, a primary reason for a surge in global LNG prices.

Earlier in the day, Sh. Singh said higher global prices have curbed growth in India’s gas demand, though he did not see higher gas prices affecting his company’s prospects of renewing the Qatar gas deal as the Middle Eastern nation is expanding capacity.

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Electric Mobility/ Hydrogen/ Bio- Methane

NTPC green project to blend hydrogen with piped natural gas for domestic use

State-run NTPC’s Kawas Gas blending project will blend hydrogen with piped natural gas (PNG) for domestic usage. This is first kind of project in the country that would blend hydrogen with PNG. Initially, 5%hydrogen of the total gas supply will be blended which will be gradually increased to 20%.

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The gas will be supplied to 200 homes in Aditya Nagar residential colony of NTPC Kawas in Hazira, the public sector power major said in a statement, adding that, with this, NTPC will mitigate 200 kg of carbon generation every year.

Further, the project is targeted to use 100 standard cubic metres of daily of gas for consumption in 200 households. The plant will be equipped with 6.5KW polymer electrolyte membrane with one standard cubic meter per hour(scmh). The hydrogen generation plant will be operated using power generated through a 1 MW capacity floating solar power plant at NTPC Kawas.

In a bid to increase green footprint in the country, NTPC has taken several steps to augment its green portfolio through implementation of renewable projects. The greeen hydrogen natural gas blending project at NTPC’s Kawas plant in Gujarat was among the upcoming green projects of NTPC. Hon’ble PM Sh. Narendra Modi on Saturday, July 30, said the foundation stone for the project along with the NTPC Nokh Solar Project in Jaisalmer, and Green Hydrogen Mobility Project in Leh, Ladakh.

As a step toward the country’s de-carbonization commitments and Carbon Neutral Ladakh (CNL), NTPC has taken up India’s first green hydrogen mobility project with fuel cell electric vehicle at Leh. The green hydrogen mobility project at Leh, Ladakh is the first pilot project with deployment of fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) for public use in India.

Further, NTPC is developing 735 MW Solar PV Project in Nokh in Rajasthan. This is India’s largest Domestic Content Requirement (DCR) based Solar project with 1000 MWp at a single location deploying high-wattage bifacial PV Modules with a tracker system, the state.

Owing to the tracker technology, the project will provide optimum energy yield output maximising the utilisation of solar energy received. The project, once commissioned would provide approximately 1.78 million tonne of CO2 emission reduction per year leading to 41 million tonne of CO2 emission reduction throughout the life of the project of minimum 25 years.

NTPC’s capacity addition program is in line with India’s commitment to UN Climate Change  Conference at Glasgow at COP-26.

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Adani and RIL plan biogas foray, each to invest Rs 600 cr

Sh. Gautam Adani-led Adani New Industries (ANIL) and Sh. Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries (RIL) are planning to set up two compressed biogas (CBG) plants each, senior executives aware of the development said.

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ANIL plans to set up a 40-million tonne per annum (mtpa) plant in Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat, while RIL is still formalising the location for two similar capacity units.

ANIL and RIL did not respond to ET’s email seeking comment. CBG is produced by anaerobic decomposition of agricultural waste, sugarcane press mud, and municipal waste. CBG is also being considered to produce green hydrogen and could be used as a replacement for piped natural gas for domestic use. RIL and ANIL will feed CBG into their fuel retail outlets and CGD network. RIL, with equal partner BP, has a fuel retailing joint venture called Reliance BP Mobility, which operates a network of over 1,400 outlets under the Jio-bp brand.

Adani Group subsidiary Adani Total Gas operates in the city gas distribution segment. Another executive with knowledge of the development said the attractive pricing of CBG has made it a lucrative segment for private players.

The bio-manure generated after the production of CBG can be a valuable fertilizer and can be used for farming and improving soil health, the person said. In October 2018, the government launched the scheme to boost production and availability of CBG as an alternative and affordable clean fuel for transportation. The scheme envisaged setting up of 5,000 CBG plants by financial year 2023-24. The biogas produced contains up to 60% methane, 40-45% carbon dioxide and traces of hydrogen sulphide.

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Natural Gas / Transnational Pipelines/ Others

Portugal: EU eyes Iberia-Italy pipeline to get gas to Europe

Portugal’s prime minister says European authorities are considering a liquefied natural gas pipeline from Spain to Italy. European authorities are considering a liquefied natural gas pipeline from Spain to Italy as a way of getting around France’s opposition to

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a gas link-up across the Pyrenees between the Iberian peninsula and central Europe, Portugal’s prime minister said Friday, August 12.

Portugal and Spain could send a lot of the liquefied natural gas, or LNG, they receive from around the world to other European Union countries, Prime Minister Antonio Costa said. He gave no further details, but such an undersea pipeline would likely take years to complete.

EU countries have struggled to find common ground on how to wean the bloc off its reliance on Russian natural gas. Russian President Vladimir Putin has weaponized gas exports to pressure the bloc into reducing its sanctions over the war in Ukraine. Putin has already cut off gas exports to more than a dozen EU nations and reduced exports to key industrial powerhouses like Germany. Many European officials fear he could cut off gas exports to most of Europe over the winter, a time of key demand.

The two Iberian countries receive LNG via pipeline from Algeria and Morocco, as well as by ship from countries such as the United States and Nigeria. But there are currently scant energy connections between Spain and Portugal and rest of Europe.

With six LNG plants in Spain including Europe’s largest, in Barcelona and one in Portugal, the Iberian neighbors account for one-third of Europe’s LNG processing capacity. The port-based terminals turn boatloads of supercooled LNG back into gas that then flows into homes and businesses.

Costa said the Iberian plants could also send more LNG by ship to other European ports while a pipeline is being built. Costa said the French government is still against a pipeline across the Pyrenees, citing environmental concerns, and added that the European Commission is assessing a link to Italy.

Scholz said he had been in talks with Spain, Portugal, France and the European Commission about the project. The German chancellor’s comments were welcomed by Portugal and Spain, which could reap the benefits of their investments in LNG.

The U.S. government and businesses have long been eyeing Portugal’s deep water Atlantic port of Sines as a springboard for expansion. They have identified Sines as a potential gateway to Europe for gas from fracking in the United States, which has allowed the U.S. to boost LNG exports and offer low prices.

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Iran’s key gas pipeline near Azerbaijan is near completion

The National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) authorities say a major gas pipeline project that is being constructed along the Caspian Sea is near completion amid Iran’s plans to increase gas supply to Azerbaijan under a swap deal with Turkmenistan.

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NIGC’s head of dispatching operations Mohammad Reza Joulayi said on Sunday that the Rasht- Chelavand pipeline will be ready for gas transfer within the next few days. Joulayi told the Iranian Oil Ministry’s news service Shana that the 42-inch, 150-kilometer gas pipeline will play a major part in Iran’s gas supply arrangements with Azerbaijan.

The NIGC started the construction of Rasht-Chelavand gas pipeline in 2019 with the aim of expanding its gas transfer network in colder regions in north of the country. However, the project accelerated in November after Iran signed a major deal for swap of gas with Turkmenistan for delivery to Azerbaijan. The deal allows Iran to receive 5-6 million cubic meters per day of gas from Turkmenistan for use in its northeastern regions while it delivers the same amount of gas to Azerbaijan through its pipeline facilities near Astara.

Iran’s Oil Minister Javad Owji said in June that he had reached agreements with Turkmen and Azerbaijani officials to double the amount of gas agreed for swap between the three neighbors. The new gas pipeline from Rasht to Chelavand, which is located near Astara and is home to a major pressure bosting station, will enable the NIGC to significantly increase its gas supply to Azerbaijan.

The pipeline also boosts NIGC’s capacity to respond to the gas demand in the Ardabil province where gas consumption reaches record highs during cold winter months.

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USA: TC Energy, Mexican utility sign deal to build $4.5B gas pipeline

TC Energy Corp. said on Thursday it had struck a deal with a Mexican state utility to develop a $4.5 billion natural gas pipeline. The offshore Southeast Gateway Pipeline will supply natural gas to Mexico’s central and southeast regions, the Canadian pipeline operator added.

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The deal with Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE), Mexico’s national power utility, comes as Canada and the United States are having their most serious trade spat with Mexico over the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement.

Mexico’s North American neighbours lodged a complaint last month against the nationalist energy policy of the government of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, arguing that it discriminates against U.S. and Canadian companies trying to operate in the Latin American country. According to the rules of their 2020 trade agreement, known as USMCA, within 30 days of the filing officials will start holding talks as a first stage in the process to settle the dispute.

Lopez Obrador has spent billions of dollars trying to revive state-owned oil company Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) and has changed the law to favour CFE over private-sector energy investors. TC Energy said sanctioning of the pipeline would expand its secured capital program to $33 billion and could add to its 2021-2026 adjusted EBITDA growth outlook.

Roberto Velasco, a senior foreign ministry official in Mexico, revealed last month that TC Energy had agreed with the country to build a $5 billion gas pipeline in the Gulf Coast state of Veracruz.

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Brazil: Petrobras and Petrogal share natural gas processing units

Petrobras has announced that the Integrated Processing System (SIP) contract signed with Petrogal Brasil has now entered into operation.

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The contract provides for Petrogal’s access to the gas processing units, owned by Petrobras, located in the states of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, linked to the Integrated Drainage System (SIE).

The implementation of the SIP allows gas-producing companies in Brazil to sell their volumes directly to their customers. This movement is part of a set of actions that enable the diversification of agents, resulting in increased competition, in compliance with the commitments assumed by Petrobras with the Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE) in 2019.

The entry into operation of the Petrogal contract is another milestone in the opening of the natural gas market in Brazil, and demonstrates the commitment of partners and other agents involved in contributing to the development of a competitive and sustainable market in the country. In the future, other companies producing natural gas may join the SIP.

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Natural Gas / LNG Utilization

U.S.A natural gas consumption & production hit an all-time high in 2021

In 2021, global natural gas consumption reached a new all-time high, surpassing the previous record set in 2019 by 3.3%. Natural gas is the cleanest-burning of the fossil fuels. It is also the fastest- growing fossil fuel, with a global 2.2% average

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annual growth rate over the past decade. In comparison, oil grew at a rate of 0.7% globally over the past decade, and coal grew globally at 0.1%. Looking ahead, natural gas is projected to be the only fossil fuel that will see substantial demand growth over the next two decades.

Over the past decade, the U.S. shale gas boom propelled the U.S. into the global lead among natural producers. In 2021, the U.S. set a new all-time high for natural gas production. For the year, the U.S. held a commanding 23.1% share of global natural gas production, ahead of Russia (17.4%) and even the entire Middle East (17.7%).

The Top 10 producers of natural gas accounted for 72.6% of the world’s natural gas supply in 2021. U.S. production grew 2.3% last year to surpass 90 billion cubic feet (BCF) per day for the first time. U.S. production in 2021 was 91% higher than in 2005, when the shale gas boom was just getting started.

The U.S. is also the world’s top consumer of natural gas. In fact, most of the leading producers are also the world’s leading consumers. The surge of natural gas production in the U.S. has also launched the U.S. into first place globally in natural gas liquids (NGL) production. The U.S. has a 44.8% global share of NGL production, with most of the NGLs destined for refineries or petrochemical production.

However, because the U.S. consumes most of the natural gas it produces, it lags behind two other countries in the export of liquefied natural gas (LNG), which is different than NGL. In 2021 Australia was in first place globally with a 20.9% share of LNG exports, followed by Qatar (20.7%), the U.S. (18.4%), Russia (7.7%), and Malaysia (6.5%).

But the U.S. is the world’s fastest-growing LNG exporter, with a 49.1% average annual growth rate over the past decade (and a 100% increase in LNG exports from 2019 to 2021). The U.S. is on a pace to become the world’s largest LNG exporter this year.

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Global LNG Development

Viva Energy seeks approval for $210m LNG import terminal in Australia

The project will include a floating gas terminal, extension of the existing refinery pier, a new pipeline, and a treatment facility. Viva Energy has sought permission from an Australian state panel to approve its plan to build a LNG import terminal in the Port of Geelong, Victoria to address the anticipated gas shortage in south-east Australia.

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Planned to be commissioned in 2024, the proposed project is intended to bring natural gas from various locations in Australia and overseas. The A$300m ($210m) project will include a floating gas terminal, an extension to on a pier at Viva’s Geelong oil refinery near Mel bourne, a new pipeline, and a treatment facility.

The extension of the existing refinery pier is intended to provide an additional berth for a permanently moored floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU), which will have capacity to receive LNG imports from visiting vessels. Reuters cited Viva as saying to an environmental impact inquiry that a FSRU could help in addressing energy crisis ‘that is likely, if not inevitable’.

Subsequently, the minister is required to announce a decision on the project within 30 days. Geelong Grammar, which environmental action team that voiced opposition to the gas terminal project, said project’s environmental studies conducted by Viva were inadequate and rushed.

Viva’s lawyer Stuart Morris told the panel that the company would implement measures, which would be recommended by the state’s Environmental Protection Authority, to reduce potential impact by the project.

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Australia: Beach Energy and BP sign LNG sale and purchase deal

Australian oil and gas company Beach Energy has confirmed finalisation and signing of the LNG sale and purchase agreement (SPA) with BP Singapore, a unit of UK-based energy giant BP. Back in September 2021, the parties signed a deal regarding the supply of Beach’s share of LNG from Waitsia Gas Project Stage 2.

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Under the now confirmed SPA, BP will buy all 3.75 million tonnes of Beach’s expected LNG volumes from the Waitsia Stage 2 project.

Supply is to start in the second half of 2023 and will continue for approximately five years. Terms include flexibility around the commencement of supply, ensuring alignment with Waitsia Stage 2 construction and commissioning activities. The LNG SPA contains a hybrid pricing structure linked to both Brent and Japan Korea Marker (JKM) indices. The SPA also includes a downside price protection mechanism.

Supply will be delivered on a free on board basis from the North West Shelf (NWS) facilities in Karratha, Western Australia to leverage BP’s LNG trading and shipping capabilities. BP is an existing participant in the NWS joint venture. To remind, the Waitsia Stage 2 project includes a new gas processing plant with a 20-year life cycle. The Waitsia Joint Venture partners include Beach Energy and Mitsui E&P.

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Turkmenistan’s Turkmengas increases production of liquefied natural gas

The Lebap production department of Turkmenistan’s Turkmengas State Concern increased the manufacture of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from January through June 2022, Trend reports with reference to Jeyhun News.

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During the reporting period, the department manufactured 59,400 tons of LNG. The growth rate of production at the same time amounted to 31.2%.

Furthermore, most of the products manufactured by the department have been exported to countries such as Tajikistan and Uzbekistan since the beginning of the year.

Turkmenistan ranks among the world’s leading countries in terms of oil and gas reserves. Its gas reserves have increased by 126 billion cubic meters as a result of the industrial development of recently discovered gas fields.

At the same time, the country pays great attention to the creation of oil and gas processing plants, as well as the export of energy resources to world markets.

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Brazi: ExxonMobil deal boosts Brownsville liquified natural gas project

The 20-year agreement will help finance construction of the Rio Grande LNG facility. NextDecade Corporation, a Houston-based energy company, is in the process of building a liquified natural gas facility in Brownsville called Rio Grande LNG.

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The plant would take in natural gas piped primarily from West Texas, then liquify it so the gas can be exported overseas.

The project has been in the works for years, but uncertainty in the natural gas market has slowed its progress. There’s also a coalition of people from the area including environmental groups, shrimpers and fishers, and human rights activists who oppose the project. But late last week, the facility took a big step forward when ExxonMobil agreed to buy 1 million tons of liquified natural gas per year for the next 20 years. Sergio Chapa, a reporter for Bloomberg, spoke to Texas Standard about what the deal means for the project’s future.

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Enbridge to invest $1.5bn in Canada’s Woodfibre LNG project

The Woodfibre facility will have an export capacity of 2.1Mtpa and 50,000m³ floating storage capacity. Canada’s Enbridge has agreed to invest $1.5bn in a joint project to build and operate the $5.1bn Woodfibre LNG project with Pacific Energy.

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The move comes amid a surge in North American liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports to Europe, which is seeking alternate supplies for Russian gas in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Under the deal, Enbridge will invest $1.5bn for a 30% stake in the project, which is scheduled for completion in 2027. Pacific Energy will retain the remaining stake in the LNG export facility. The project will also include the expansion of FortisBC Energy’s Eagle Mountain to Woodfibre pipeline.

The pipeline will connect the export facility to Enbridge’s T-South natural gas transmission system, which will carry production from Montney, British Columbia (BC). Planned to be built in Squamish, BC, the Woodfibre LNG facility will have an export capacity of 2.1Mtpa and a 250,000m³ floating storage capacity.

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South Africa: TPL to develop LNG import facilities in Richards Bay

Transnet’s subsidiary and primary operator of South Africa’s fuel pipeline system, Transnet Pipelines (TPL), is looking for a partner to develop liquified natural gas (LNG) import facilities at its Richards Bay Port.

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TPL announced its participation in the planned Section 56 process for request for proposals (RFP) issued by Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA). This comes after the ports authority issued the RFP on July 27.

The pipeline operator, which is the largest multi-product pipeline operator in Southern Africa, is searching for qualifying partners to enter into a joint development agreement (JDA) that will enable the parties to collaborate on the response to the ports authority’s RFP. The RFP, which is set to close on August 19, can be found on the National Treasury’s e-Tenders portal and Transnet’s website.

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LNG as a Marine Fuel/Shipping

South Korea: KSOE receives $1.5B order for seven LNG carriers

Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering (KSOE) received an order worth 1.96 trillion won ($1.5 billion) from an Asian shipper to build seven liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers, the company announced Wednesday, as Korean shipbuilders continue to win significant orders.

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According to KSOE, a subsidiary of Hyundai Heavy Industries, an Asian shipper ordered seven 174,000-meter class LNG carriers from KSOE. The carriers will be 299 meters (981 feet) long, 45.4 meters wide and 26.5 meters high, and will be built at KSOE’s shipyard in Ulsan to be delivered to the shipper by the second half of 2026. KSOE has received the most orders of LNG carriers this year out of any company worldwide, with a total of 41 ships ordered. The company received 21 ship orders in 2020 and 26 in 2021, ranking first in the market share of LNG carriers in those years.

The Export-Import Bank of Korea predicted that global LNG trade would increase at an average annual rate of 4.3% until 2035, based on data recently announced by BP, a multinational energy company. These predictions are expected to lead to a stable amount of orders for LNG carriers at least until 2030.

The three largest Korean shipbuilders have all been faring well this year. Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) and Samsung Heavy Industries, along with KSOE, have already won about 87 percent of this year’s order target. According to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy on Wednesday, orders received by these three shipbuilders between January to July this year amounted to $30.52 billion, or 86.9 percent of this year’s target.

As of the end of July, the order backlog of domestic shipbuilders stood at 35.86 compensated gross tonnage (CGT), up 25.8% from a year ago, significantly exceeding the global order backlog growth rate of 9.2 percent. During the same period, orders for Chinese shipbuilders increased by 12.2 percent and those for Japanese shipbuilders decreased by 12.7%.

Of the 2.11 million CGT orders placed worldwide in July, Korean shipbuilders received 1.16 million CGT, a 55% share. Chinese shipbuilders received 30 percent, while Japanese shipbuilders took 3 percent.

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China Merchants seals long-term LNG carrier deal with Sinochem

China Merchants Energy Shipping (CMES) has landed a long-term charter agreement with Sinochem Petroleum Shipping Singapore, a subsidiary of Sinochem Energy, for three of its liquified natural gas (LNG) carrier newbuilds.

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The Shanghai-listed energy transport unit of China Merchants Group said the deal involves the 175,000 cu m trio built by Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (DSIC).

The charters, expected to total up to $2.5bn, should commence in the second half of 2025 and last up to 30 years.

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South Korea: KNOT’s first LNG dual fuel shuttle tanker delivered

A dual-fuel LNG (liquefied natural gas) shuttle tanker1 ordered by Knutsen NYK Offshore Tankers AS,2 which is an affiliate of NYK, was delivered on August 2 at Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. Ltd. The vessel has been named “Frida Knutsen.”

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The shuttle tanker will be chartered to ENI Trade & Biofuels S.p.A, a subsidiary of Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi S.p.A (ENI), 3 and will be engaged in oil transportation in the North Sea and Barents Sea.

The vessel will be KNOT’s first dual-fuel shuttle tanker that can use not only heavy fuel oil but also LNG. It will use LNG fuel, which is more environmentally friendly than conventional oil-fuel, and will be equipped with a VOC recovery system4 and an energy storage system,5 thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

In February 2021, NYK released the “NYK Group ESG Story,” which aims to further integrate ESG into the company’s management strategy a nd promotes activities that contribute to the achievement of the SDGs through business activities. In March this year, NYK released the updated “NYK Group ESG Story 2022,” which introduces initiatives for integrating ESG into the Group’s management strategies set forth in the “NYK Group ESG Story” and provides a partial explanation of the Group’s sustainable growth strategy from a long-term perspective.

To strongly promote ESG management, the NYK Group will promote the creation of new value as a sustainable solution provider by promoting low-carbon marine fuel.

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North America: Keppel delivers first LNG-fueled containership to Pasha Hawaii

Keppel Offshore & Marine has successfully delivered the first of two new build LNG-fueled containerships to Pasha Hawaii, one of the leading shipping and logistics companies in the United States. The vessel – named M/V George III – was built by Keppel O&M’s wholly-owned subsidiary Keppel AmFELS at the Keppel yard in Brownsville, Texas.

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The M/V George III will join Pasha Hawaii’s fleet serving the Hawaii-Mainland trade lane and the 774 by 115-foot Jones Act vessel can carry 2,525 TEUs. The LNG capabilities substantially improve the vessels’ environmental footprint and energy savings. Its engine, optimized hull form, underwater propulsion system, and high-efficiency rudder and propeller are amongst the most modern fuel-efficient containership features in the world. The vessel is also the first IGF-compliant vessel certified by the United States Coast Guard.

MV Janet Marie, the second LNG-fueled containership Keppel is building for Pasha Hawaii, is scheduled for delivery in 2022. M/V George III and Janet Marie will be two of the first LNG-powered vessels to serve the West Coast of the United States. M/V George III and Janet Marie will run completely on LNG fuel, dramatically reducing their environmental impact, and surpassing the International Maritime Organization 2030 emission standards for ocean vessels.

Keppel added that it is supporting the Jones Act market and is currently building the first wind turbine installation vessel in the U.S for Dominion Energy, as well as a high-specification Trailing Suction Hopper Dredger for Manson Construction Co.

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USA: V.Group to technically manage three LNG-fuelled newbuilds

New York-based tanker company International Seaways (INSW) owns these three LNG dual-fuel very large crude carriers. V.Group said the vessels will be joining its fleet management in the first quarter of 2023. Upon delivery, the three vessels will be employed on long-term time charters to Shell.

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In addition to their emission-reducing LNG-powered engines, the ships also feature optimised hull forms and propellers, wake improvement ducts, and rudder bulbs to further improve vessel efficiency.

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South Korea: GTT receives order for tank design of eight new LNG carriers

GTT has announced that it has received an order from its partner the Korean shipyard Hyundai Heavy Industries for the tank design of eight new LNG carriers on behalf of a European shipowner.

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As part of this order, GTT will design the tanks of the vessels, which will offer a cargo capacity of 174 000 m3 each and will be fitted with the Mark III Flex membrane containment system, a technology developed by GTT. Deliveries of the vessels are scheduled between 3Q25 and 4Q26.

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Technological Development for Cleaner and Greener Environment Hydrogen & Bio-Methane

Austria: INNIO to power Raven SR’s first waste-to-hydrogen plant

INNIO in collaboration with Raven SR announced Raven SR’s plans to use INNIO’s Jenbacher engines [60 Hz] with a “Ready for H2” option to produce renewable energy. The energy system will power and heat Raven SR’s S- Series hydrogen production facility at a sanitary landfill in Richmond, California. At the site, landfill gas (LFG) will be the primary fuel to provide power for the non-combustion process that converts waste to hydrogen.

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The hydrogen product will be resold to power fuel cells in heavy-duty trucks. The Raven SR process will also provide a residual fuel containing residual green hydrogen from the concentration process to supplement the LFG to fuel the Jenbacher Ready-for-H2 engines to generate renewable power in a continuous loop.

The collaboration with Raven’s technology offers a strong renewable hydrogen alternative to electrolysis, using less electricity and no need for fresh water. INNIO’s Jenbacher engines will allow the Raven facility to generate a significant amount of their own electricity, reducing demand on California’s electrical grid.

INNIO is able to meet our delivery schedule and provide engines that are compliant with emissions requirements for a blend of CO2, methane, and hydrogen, said Mr. Matt Murdock, CEO of Raven SR. The Jenbacher engines are a very important element for us to realize our objective of producing renewable hydrogen with our non-combustion Steam/CO2 Reformation Process, independent of the grid. Raven’s success in the increasing energy and electricity crisis requires that we generate autonomous power on site, added by Mr. Matt Murdock, CEO of Raven SR. To succeed in the energy transition, collaboration among best-in-class engineering around the world is required. We are grateful to work with INNIO on this advanced, self-contained renewable energy design.”

Mr. Raven SR plans to bring its S-Series online in the first quarter of 2023 at the Republic Services West Contra Costa Sanitary Landfill in Richmond, California. This project will initially process up to 99.9 tons of organic waste per day and produce up to 2,000 metric tons per year of hydrogen.

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