NGS’ NG/LNG SNAPSHOT – May 1-15, 2021
City Gas Distribution & Auto LPG
AG P Pratham Opens the First Two CNG Stations in Alappuzha Kerala
AG&P, the global downstream LNG and gas logistics company on May 6, announced the launch of its first two Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) stations in Alappuzha (Kerala), under its brand AG&P Pratham.
The stations are co-located with Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited’s (BPCL) St. Augustine Pump at Aroor, and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited’s (HPCL) VAVA Fuels in Eramalloor. Aligned with the Government’s vision of facilitating the adoption of greener and smarter fuels, AG&P Pratham stations will provide almost any vehicle, including cars, auto-rickshaws, and heavy-duty transit vehicles such as buses and trucks, access to CNG.
AG&P holds 12 CGD licenses awarded by the Petroleum & Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) to exclusively provide natural gas for everyday use in 31 districts in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, and Rajasthan. These exclusive rights cover the supply of PNG to households, industrial, commercial, non-commercial, and non-domestic exempt commercial (NDEC) establishments, and CNG for use in vehicles. Under the brand name AG&P Pratham, when fully operational the CGD networks will cover 278,000 square kilometers, 17,000 inch-km of pipeline, and over 1,500 new CNG stations.
Rajasthan State Gas to participate in PNGRB bids for 9 districts
Subodh Agarwal said that the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) is soon going to open bidding process for domestic gas distribution through pipelines to many cities of the country, including Rajasthan.
He informed that the domestic gas distribution from the pipeline is cheap, 24 hours of gas availability and booking will get rid of the hassle. Agarwal said that the gas delivered from the pipe line is 42 per cent cheaper than the domestic gas cylinder. He said that the work of domestic gas distribution from pipeline in Kota is going on at fast pace.
GAIL seen gaining from spot LNG surge, CGDs insulated
As FE reported earlier, experts pointed that the price surge may reduce natural gas imports as price-sensitive consumers in the power and fertiliser sectors are likely to refrain from using the commodity and switch to alternate fuels and feedstocks.
Asian spot LNG price is up 72% from low of $5.6/ million British thermal unit (mBtu) in early March to the current level of $9.65/mbtu as severe winter depleted gas inventories in North Asia and Europe leading to competition for LNG supplies. From the lows of $2/mBtu recorded in May 2020, spot LNG prices increased to $10.7/mBtu on an average in December, spiraling to $18.5/mBtu in January as severe winter in Northeast Asia raised demand.
Analysts at ICICI Securities pointed that steeper rise in spot LNG prices compared with the price of gas imported from US (Henry Hub) has meant GAIL can sell its US LNG at higher rates. GAIL usually sells about 10-12% of its US LNG cargoes at spot LNG price in the second half of every financial year. The agency estimates GAIL’s FY22 gas marketing earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation at `4,940 crore if ten cargoes are assumed to be sold at spot LNG prices.
Adani Total Gas Q4 results: Net profit rises 19 per cent to Rs 145 cr
NEW DELHI: Adani Total Gas Ltd, the city gas joint venture of Adani Group and French energy giant Total, on Tuesday, May 4 reported a 19 per cent rise in its March quarter net profit as the firm expanded operations
in newer geographies, resulting in higher sales volumes. Net profit in the January-March quarter of FY21 was Rs 145 crore compared to Rs 122 crore in the same period of the previous fiscal, company CEO Suresh P Manglani said on a media call.
The company sold 14 per cent more gas at 166 million standard cubic meters of gas (75 mmscm CNG and 91 mmscm piped natural gas) in the January-March quarter. For the full year (April 2020 to March 2021), which was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing lockdown pummelling economic activity, sales volume was down 12 per cent at 515 mmscm. The firm has started operations in 14 out of the 15 geographical areas (GAs) it had won in recent licensing rounds. It added 102 CNG stations in the year taking the total number to 217 while piped cooking gas connections increased by nearly 41,000 to 4.78 lakh.
IOC renews medical insurance for petrol pump attendants, LPG delivery boys
New Delhi: State-owned Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) has renewed insurance cover for petrol pump attendants and LPG delivery boys as it looked to secure its frontline workers against health emergencies.
In a statement, IOC said besides renewing medical insurance for frontline workers, the company will continue to provide ex-gratia assistance to the family of the deceased. On accidental death of an insured, the family will be eligible for compensation of Rs 2 lakh.
IOC said the Karma Yogi Swasthya Bima Yojana was launched in March 2020 to provide a safety net to the field force, who were braving the pandemic to cater to the fuel needs of the country. Additionally, IOC will continue to provide an ex-gratia COVID-19 insurance cover of Rs 5 lakhs, in case of death due to COVID-19. The amount is payable to the next of kin of the deceased.
These include contract labour working on-premises for whom IOC is the principal employer and personnel engaged by business partners comprising, pump attendants, delivery boys, packed and bulk drivers, TT crew, patrolling guards of pipelines, loaders/ unloaders and other associated/support personnel.
IOCL plans to open 15 CNG retail sites
The Indian oil company is expanding its CNG supply with the opening of stations in Coimbatore. The Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) plans to open 15 retail outlets supplying compressed natural gas (CNG) in Coimbatore district in this financial year.
IOCL said that the two retail outlets were opened at Gandhi Managar and Sulur on April 19 to supply CNG for automobiles. These CNG retail outlets will refill fuel for those vehicles powered by CNG as well as the vehicles that run on petrol which are retrofitted with a CNG kit, according to The Hindu.
According to a press release, the IOCL is developing CGD networks in Coimbatore and Salem districts and will be providing over 12 lakh PNG connections to domestic households and 431 CNG stations for vehicle refilling in the two districts over a period of eight years.
Reliance, affiliates buy 3/4 of KG-D6 gas volumes
NEW DELHI: Billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries Ltd and its affiliates have picked up more than three-fourths of the new gas volumes from the firm’s eastern offshore KG-D6 block
which at current government dictated price will cost it less than half of the imported rate, sources said.
Reliance and its partner UK’s BP Plc last week auctioned 5.5 million standard cubic meters per day of incremental gas from the newer discoveries in the KG-D6 block, benchmarking it to a gas marker. The remaining volume was picked by Adani Gas (0.15 mmscmd), IRM Energy (0.10 mmscmd), GAIL (30,000 cubic meters per day) and Torrent Gas (20,000 cubic meters per day).
In that auction too, RIL picked up two-thirds of the 7.5 mmscmd gas sold. Reliance O2C picked up 4.8 mmscmd of gas while state gas utility GAIL (India) won 0.85 mmscmd of supplies and Shell 0.7 mmscmd. Adani Total Gas got 0.1 mmscmd, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) 0.2 mmscmd and Torrent Gas 0.02 mmscmd. Other buyers include IRM Energy (0.1 mmscmd), PIL (0.35 mmscmd) and IGS (0.35 mmscmd).
Other discoveries have either been surrendered or taken away by the government for not meeting timelines for beginning production. Reliance is the operator of the block with 66.6 percent interest while BP holds the remaining stake.
India pandemic weighs on natural gas demand amid souring GDP outlook
India’s deadly COVID-19 outbreak and widening localized lockdowns have soured the country’s economic growth outlook, stifled its natural gas demand and resulted in more LNG carriers being diverted by gas companies,
an analysis by S&P Global Platts showed. On May 8, the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, one of the country’s most industrialized and among its largest by GDP- imposed a two-week lockdown amid growing infections, joining several other states that have taken similar measures.
Tamil Nadu is home to Petronet LNG’s Kochi terminal with a capacity of around 5 million mt/year, and market participants expect the lockdown to hurt industrial and city gas demand similar to other gas consuming states like Gujarat and Maharashtra. An Indian gas aggregator estimated that city gas demand had dropped by 40-50%, and demand from the industrial sector could drop by 20-25%.
LNG vessel diversions
Meanwhile, more LNG carriers have been diverted from India. The 160,400 cu m vessel Cubal that was headed to Dahej LNG in western India was diverted to Fujian where it arrived on May 10, according to Platts’ trade-flow software, cFlow. The cargo originated from Angola LNG and was sold to state-run CNOOC. The 266,000 cu m LNG carrier Shagra, which loaded at Qatar’s Ras Laffan terminal, was diverted from western India to South Korea’s Incheon terminal where it is expected to arrive May 16, according to cFlow.
This is in addition to four LNG carriers that were previously diverted, according to Kpler. Three were diverted to Europe — Qatargas-chartered Ejnan and Lusail and Angola LNG’s Sonangol Etosha, and the GAIL-chartered Gail Bhuwan that loaded at Cove Point in the US was diverted to the Middle East.
Natural Gas / Transnational Pipelines/ Others
New CNG intercity minibuses enter service in Nouvelle-Aquitaine-FRANCE
The Citram Aquitaine company, part of the Transdev group, unveiled five Wing minibuses built on a chassis with a natural gas engine. These are the first Wing models with a CNG engine to leave Indcar’s factories in 2021.
This NGV is available in two versions of the well-known Wing minibus, one measuring 7.7 meters with a PRM platform and the other one of 8 meters with a large trunk capacity.
The new minibuses, which will serve the Gironde and Lot-en-Garone areas, are the shorter version. Equipped with a platform and having a capacity for 24 passengers all seated or 20 passengers and a wheelchair, these vehicles are designed for intercity and school services. France has a network of 136 CNG stations spread throughout the country, a figure that continues to grow year after year.
Gas producer EQT Corp to buy private driller Alta Resources for $3 bln-USA
EQT Corp, the largest U.S. natural gas producer, said on May 6, it will buy Blackstone-backed Appalachian basin rival Alta Resources for $2.93 billion in cash and stock, making an entry in the Northeast
Marcellus shale play. Dealmaking in the oil and gas space has been heating up as crude prices have jumped on a vaccine-led recovery in travel demand. Natural gas, in particular, hit record highs earlier in February when a winter storm swept parts of the United States.
The deal, which adds around one billion cubic feet equivalent gas production to EQT‘s portfolio, is expected to be accretive to free cash flow and net asset value per share, the company said. EQT said it will pay $1 billion to Alta in cash and the rest in stock. It expects to fund the cash portion partly by drawing on its credit facilities and new debt.
Natural Gas Prices in Europe Spike to January Levels Amid Fall in Stockpiles
At the same time, EU countries are struggling to agree on their policy towards Nord Stream 2 – a joint project between Russian Gazprom and European energy giants, designed to deliver 55 billion cubic metres of natural gas
from Russia per year. The pipeline has been facing sanctions pressure from the US, which wants the project to be shut down.
Gas prices continue to spike in the EU, with a thousand cubic metres of low-emission fuel having a price tag of $295 on the spot market at Dutch TTF on May 2. Two days ago, the price already crossed the landmark of $286 – a level previously seen in January 2021 amid a notably cold winter in Europe.The surprising growth in gas prices amid the coming of spring was facilitated by two factors – a general decline in gas stockpiles in the EU due to a cold winter and a reduction of liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipments. European gas storages are currently around 30% full, which is lower than the average level of 41% seen in the last five years. Also this year’s April was the first time that the EU’s gas stockpiles have diminished instead of expanded. The bloc is currently restoring its gas reserves by 0.1% per day.
Last week’s 8% reduction in LNG supplies has only worsened the situation, contributing to the spiking price for a fuel that is in high demand in Europe, who are using it as a temporary source of energy as they transition to meet their 100% green energy goal. The overall reduction of LNG supplies to Europe in 2021 compared to last year is around 4.8%.
Peruvian consortium grants US$39M to help acquire CNG trucks & buses-SOUTH AMERICA
Over the next three years, the Camisea Consortium will allocate a fund of approximately US$39 million to promote the use of natural gas in vehicles of the passenger and cargo transportation segment in
the department of Lima and the constitutional province of Callao. The NGV Promotion program of the consortium led by Pluspetrol plans to incorporate more than 3,000 new NGVs in the next three years.
The Camisea Consortium is made up of Pluspetrol (operator), Hunt Oil, Repsol, Sonatrach, SK Innovation and Tecpetrol. Camisea is located in the Peruvian Amazon within the lower basin of the Urubamba River, in the Cusco region. The project consists of the exploration and production of natural gas and liquids from the San Martín, Cashiriari and Pagoreni fields (lots 56 and 88), which make up one of the most important gas reserves in Latin America.
Over 130,000 public transport vehicles to become dual-fuel
TEHRAN – The Director of the National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company (NIORDC)’s compressed natural gas (CNG) programs Mohammad-Hossein Baqeri has said that 132,000 public transport vehicles are
going to become dual-fueled across the country. The mentioned vehicles are going to become dual-fuel under the framework of a program launched back in May 2020, for the promotion of CNG consumption instead of gasoline. The program is aimed at converting over 1.46 million public vehicles into dual-fuel ones.
According to Baqeri, so far over 306,000 vehicles have registered in this program of which only 132,000 have met the required criteria to become dual-fuel. ince the implementation of a program for rationing subsidized gasoline and increasing fuel prices in November 2019, CNG consumption has been rising in the country.
Iran’s CNG consumption which stood at 19 million cubic meters (mcm) per day before the implementation of the fuel rationing scheme, has now reached 21 mcm. There are currently 2,400 CNG stations across Iran that supply 22 percent of the country’s fuel basket.
Iranian Oil Ministry considers CNG as the national fuel, therefore, to increase the share of this fuel in the country’s energy basket, it was planned to turn public vehicles into dual-fuel cars, which can increase CNG consumption by 10 mcm per day.
Mexico: more than 50% of Querétaro urban transit system runs on CNG
The Querétaro Transport Institute reported that six out of ten buses of Móvil Qrobús, the company responsible for the operation of the integrated public transport system in the metropolitan area of Querétaro,
run on natural gas, allowing to improve air quality and reduce environmental pollution in the region. Qrobús has renewed 50% of its vehicle fleet in the last three years and has chosen to be responsible with the environment. The company reaffirms its commitment to follow the path of sustainable mobility, acting in co-responsibility for the health of society and continually exposing the benefits in reducing carbon emissions from the operation.
According to figures from the National Commission for the Efficient Use of Energy, the use of natural gas helps reduce up to 90% of NOx emissions, 65% of CO and 30% of CO2, compared to gasoline or diesel. In addition, noise pollution is cut in half by having a quieter operation.
Technological Development for Cleaner and Greener Environment Hydrogen & Bio-Methane
Cargill steps up push to cut carbon emissions from shipping fleet-UK
LONDON: Cargill, one of the world’s biggest charterers of ships, has cut nearly 1.5 million tonnes of gross carbon emissions from its fleet since 2017, a top company executive said, as it steps up efforts to go green.
With about 90% of world trade transported by sea, global shipping accounts for nearly 3% of the world’s CO2 emissions.
The United Nations aims to reduce the industry’s greenhouse gas emissions by 50% from 2008 levels by 2050. This target will require the swift development of zero or low emission fuels and new designs for ships. Cargill achieved an overall reduction of 5% in CO2 emissions per cargo tonne-mile by 2020 against a 2016 baseline, the U.S. agribusiness giant said. Cargill’s gross CO2 emissions fell to 7.102 million tonnes in 2020 from 7.371 million tonnes in 2019, 7.382 million tonnes in 2018 and 7.732 million tonnes in 2017.
Cargill charters between 600 to 700 vessels, of which 90% are for dry bulk and the rest are for tankers. Cargill is also working with technology partners to fit sails on selected vessels, which will cut carbon emissions by up to 30% through harnessing wind power.
More U.S. trucking fleets speed up transition to low-carbon biomethane
Clean Energy Fuels Corp. announced new renewable natural gas contracts as fleets across North America increasingly continue to adopt the clean, low-carbon fuel to power heavy- and medium-duty trucks.
Pac Anchor, a port drayage company that serves the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, has added 23 new trucks to its fleet for an estimated 2.5 million gallons of biomethane. In addition, Cal Portland signed a renewable natural gas supply agreement to support its fleet of 150 ready mix and bulk hauler natural gas trucks for an estimated one million gallons.
Biagi Bros., a large nationwide carrier whose customers include Anheuser-Busch and PepsiCo, will deploy 12 new trucks through Clean Energy’s Zero Now program for an approximate 900,000 gallons of biomethane. Ecology Auto Parts is adding 35 new vehicles to its Southern California fleet, also through the Zero Now program, that will fuel with an anticipated 420,000 gallons of renewable natural gas.
Finally, Matheson Trucking Company has added 16 new tractors which are fueling at Clean Energy stations in California, Nevada, and Idaho with an anticipated 200,000 gallons of renewable natural gas.
Adopt-a-Port: Chevron further bets on alliance to help fleets shift to biogas-USA
Chevron Corporation announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary Chevron U.S.A. Inc. (Chevron) is investing an additional $20 million in the Adopt-a-Port initiative with Clean Energy Fuels.
Chevron has now invested a total of $28 million in the initiative, which provides truck fleet operators and owners serving the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach with cleaner, carbon-negative renewable natural gas to reduce emissions.
In addition to providing funding for Adopt-a-Port, Chevron supplies renewable natural gas to Clean Energy stations near the ports. Chevron’s funding will allow truck operators to subsidize the cost of buying new or converting to biomethane trucks. Clean Energy, meanwhile, will manage the program, including offering fueling services for qualified truck operators.
Truck operators participating in the program, which supports the ports’ Clean Trucks Program and Clean Air Action Plan, agree to fuel up at the Clean Energy stations supplied with Chevron renewable gas. Truck operators and their import and export customers are expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard program while also reducing smog-forming NOx emissions by up to 98% compared to diesel trucks, helping local communities.
World first: hydrogen truck supplies McDonald’s locations in Switzerland
In a world first, logistics company HAVI transported ingredients for Big Macs and other products to a McDonald’s restaurant in a hydrogen-fueled truck. Due to its long range of 400 kilometers,
the zero-emission truck transported the consignment from the HAVI logistics center in Oensingen (SO) to Crissier (VD), where McDonald’s head office has a restaurant, without refueling once and with water vapor as the only emission.
Going forward, this truck will be supplying McDonald’s restaurants in the Aargau, Basel, Bern and Zurich regions. This finds the long-standing partners an effective step closer to achieving one of their climate goals: transporting 70% of McDonald’s Switzerland’s goods to its restaurants in a CO2-neutral manner by 2025; that figure stands at 64% today.
Reducing CO2 emissions is a focus at McDonald’s and HAVI, which is why climate protection takes place on a variety of levels: Procurement from suppliers in Switzerland results in short transport distances and correspondingly low CO2 emissions.
Since the early 2000s, biodiesel has been produced from waste frying oil, while biogas has been produced from organic kitchen waste. HAVI’s trucks, which are used for the last-mile distribution of goods to the restaurants, run on a variable proportion of biodiesel or biogas. This closes the circle of another pioneering achievement in Switzerland.