NGS’ NG/LNG SNAPSHOT – September 16–30, 2022

National News Internatonal News


City Gas Distribution & Auto LPG

IGL says record 3.75 lakh new PNG connections were provided in FY22

Indraprastha Gas Ltd (IGL) on Tuesday, September 27, provided record 3.75 lakh new connections for piped cooking gas to households during the financial year 2021-22. The gas retailer in the national capital region said it had set up 99 new CNG stations between April 2019 and March 2020, taking the total number of CNG stations set to 711.

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Addressing the shareholders at the 23rd annual general meeting (AGM) of the company, IGL chairman Sh. Arun Kumar Singh stated that despite the challenges such as the pandemic and the high input gas cost, IGL achieved gross turnover of ₹8443 crore and PAT was Rs.1315 crore in FY2021-22.

The consolidated PAT of IGL after considering the contribution of the associate companies namely, Central UP Gas Limited (CUGL) and Maharashtra Natural Gas Limited (MNGL), was Rs.1502 crores. Sh. Singh also gave an overview of future plans of the organization involving consolidation of its presence in existing areas as well as expansion in new geographical areas.

In the alternate fuel space, IGL has plans to set up LNG/LCNG fueling stations. It also has plans to invest in start-ups which will give a boost to the government’s start-Up India initiative. Sh. Singh highlighted that the government has directed to increase the share of natural gas from around 7% to 15% of the primary energy basket by the year 2030.

It sells CNG to over 16 lakh vehicles in NCR through a network of 714 CNG stations. It also supplies PNG to nearly 20 lakh households in these cities. The pipeline network is being further expanded by IGL to cover Chitrakoot, Mahoba and Banda districts of Uttar Pradesh as well.


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KMC to use bio-CNG from its solid waste management unit as fuel for vehicles

The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) has set up its first Solid Waste Management Unit at Dhapa and the Bio-CNG produced from this plant is to be used as Bio-fuel in the KMC vehicles. KMC Mayor Sh. Firhad Hakim inaugurated the unit in Dhapa on Monday, September 26.

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Solid Waste Management is the conversion of organic market waste into Bio-CNG, Bio-CO2, and Compost. This new plant will produce Bio-CNG by processing the bio-waste which will be used as Bio-fuel in the civic corporation’s vehicles. Moreover, the processed plastic from the bio-waste that will be generated will be used to make windows and doors and the remaining solid waste will be used as materials for the construction of roads and municipal buildings.

Deputy Mayor Sh. Atin Ghosh, MMICs (Members mayor-In-Council), Councillors, other senior officials, and members of KMC were also present at the inauguration of the facility.

Initially, the new plant is expected to produce nearly five tonnes of bi0-fuel daily. The production capacity may be increased if the demand for the same rises in the future. According to a civic official, the plant will supply fuel to the Civic body’s trucks that transport wastes to the Dhapa dumping ground.

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Tata Motors launches Intra V20 petrol-CNG pickup with 700km range

Tata Motors, which is looking to improve its presence in the growing pickup market, has launched the Intra V20, a dual-fuel vehicle that runs on petrol and CNG. The Yodha 2.0 and Intra V50 were the other pickups introduced during an event in Hyderabad on Sept, 26. According to the company’s top leaders,

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the launches would help the company make inroads into the small commercial vehicles market. Tata Motors currently has 40% of the overall market share, as per estimates.

Sh. Girish Wagh, Executive Director at Tata Motors, stated that the introduction of new vehicles would help the company to increase the market share by another 4-5%, if not more. He also stated that It has been targeted at the agriculture, poultry and dairy sectors in addition to expanding delivery requirements of FMCGs, e-commerce and logistic sectors.

While the Yodha comes available in 1,200, 1,500 and 1,700kg-rated payload options with 4×4 and 4×2 configurations, and is available in single cab and crew cab options, the Intra V50 on the other hand offers a 1,500kg rated payload capacity and the largest deck length in its segment. Further, the Intra V20, the country’s first bi-fuel (CNG + petrol) commercial vehicle with a payload of 1,000kg has an impressive range of 700km in a single filling.

Sh. Vinay Pathak, VP, product line, SCV and PU, at Tata Motors remarked that prior to the implementation of BS-IV, the cost of a diesel vehicle was significantly lower than the cost of a CNG car. The cost of fuel and CNG have now practically reached parity with the establishment of the BSVI emission standards.

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MEIL’s wholly owned subsidiary MeghaGas, now MCGDPL, to execute CGD

Megha Engineering & Infrastructures Limited (MEIL) wholly owned subsidiary, MeghaGas, now known as Megha City Gas Distribution Private Limited (MCGDPL), will be the authorised entity to execute the City Gas Distribution (CGD) projects across India.

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In a letter recently to the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB), the MEIL sought an authorisation transfer to MCGDPL, which has been granted. Henceforth all dealings, including all operations, and administrative functions, will come under the MCGDPL.

The company is executing City Gas Distribution network projects in 22 Geographical Areas across 62 districts in the country, covering 10 states. The states are Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Odisha, Rajasthan, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. It has already laid over 2,000 km of MDPE lines and over 500 km of steel pipelines in different locations. The company operates over 60 CNG stations and is servicing over 80,000 domestic household connections. For implementing CGD, the company has invested over Rs 1,000 crore till date and will be investing over Rs 10,000 crore over the next five years.–now-MCGDPL–to-execute-City-Gas-Distribution/57276.html

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Piped natural gas facility inaugurated in Doraha village, Punjab

Think Gas has initiated to bring in piped gas service for domestic, commercial and vehicular use. Think Gas launched its initial project in Kaddon village in Payal. The supply of gas shall be made available to the villagers from October.

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Think Gas recently commissioned its Bhammadi City Gate Station (CGS) in Khanna and is laying over 200 km of pipelines to reach various industrial and household customers in nearby areas

Payal SDM Smt. Jasleen Kaur Bhullar inaugurated Payal tehsil’s first industrial PNG connection at Vinayak International in Kaddon village, Doraha, and emphasised on the benefits of PNG. Senior Environmental Engineer Sh. Paramjit Singh said Think Gas will now be covering industrial areas like Kaddon, Sahnewal and other nearby areas at Khanna.

This will be a massive boost to around 100 steel re-rolling plants and other industrial units like Bull Forge Private Limited, Eastman Exports, Amar Ispat Udyog and Arora Iron and Steel Rolling Mills, who will benefit from PNG that will help in reducing carbon emissions and reduce pollution.

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Go green: MSRTC to convert existing buses to CNG

Mumbai Passengers travelling from Mumbai to Pune using Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) buses will soon be able to travel in electric or CNG buses. MSRTC plans to include 150 electric buses in its fleet by December and has also started the process of converting the existing fleet to CNG.

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With around 17,000 diesel-based buses in its fleet, MSRTC will be able to save money by switching to green buses. It is the increasing cost of diesel that has prompted MSRTC to convert to CNG or e-buses. Every year, the MSRTC is spending ₹3 crores on diesel currently. Every bus with a shelf life of 12 to 13 years gets refurbished within seven years in the state transport fleet. MSRTC plans to install the CNG tank during this period when the bus is fitted with a steel body.

Currently, there are 50 CNG-based buses with MSRTC and these are operational on the Thane-Kalyan and Thane-Panvel routes as there is a CNG pump in Thane depot. The new buses that will join the fleet post conversion to CNG will function along Mumbai, Pune, Aurangabad, Ratnagiri and Nagpur areas.

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Let only CNG buses come to Delhi: Delhi Government

Delhi government has urged the neighbouring states to allow only those buses to enter the national capital that runs on CNG or environment-friendly fuel. The issue came up for discussion at a meeting of top officials of state transport departments called by the NCR Planning Board (NCRPB).

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According to an official release, the issue was “deliberated in detail” on Tuesday and the NCR states were requested to explore possibilities of getting their diesel buses converted to CNG or replacing them with electric buses.

A large number of diesel buses from other states enter Delhi and terminate at the different bus terminus, which is located in different parts of the national capital. A spokesperson of the housing and urban affairs ministry said the officials also discussed the need to ensure operational vehicle location tracking devices and speed governors in all commercial vehicles covered under the Combined Reciprocal Common Transport Agreement (CRCTA) among the NCR constituent states.

The official added that there was also a consensus for working expeditiously towards formulating and harmonising the rules for motor vehicle aggregators or cab aggregators for the NCR as per the Motor Vehicle Aggregators Guidelines issued by the road transport ministry in 2020.

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Natural Gas/ Pipelines/ Company News


Iran offers Indian firms 30% stake in gas field

Iran has offered ONGC Videsh Ltd and its partners a 30% interest in the development of the Farzad-B gas field in the Persian Gulf that was discovered by the Indian consortium. ONGC Videsh Ltd, the overseas arm of state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), in 2008 had discovered a giant gas field in the 3,500 square kilometres Farsi offshore block.

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In April 2011, it submitted a master development plan (MDP) to bring the discovery, which was named Farzad-B, for production but negotiations got stalled as international sanctions were slapped on Iran over its nuclear plans. Negotiations restarted in 2015, but in February 2020, the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) informed that the Iranian government has decided to award the contract to develop the field to a local firm.

The exploration contract, under which OVL and its partners had discovered gas reserves in the Farsi block, provided for the discoverer to be part of the field development. Indian Oil Corp (IOC) holds a 40% stake and the remaining 20% is with Oil India Ltd (OIL). The field holds 23 trillion cubic feet of in-place gas reserves, of which about 60% is recoverable. It also holds gas condensates of about 5,000 barrels per billion cubic feet of gas.

In April 2015, negotiations restarted with Iranian authorities to develop the Farzad-B gas field under a new Iran Petroleum Contract (IPC). This time, NIOC introduced Pars Oil and Gas Company (POGC) as its representative for negotiations. From April 2016, both sides negotiated to develop the Farzad-B gas field under an integrated contract covering upstream and downstream, including monetization/marketing of the processed gas. However, negotiations remained inconclusive. In 2016, Iran said it was examining the Indian proposal but that an agreement was unlikely because of the difference between Iran’s demanded gas price and India’s offer.

India offered a USD 6.2 billion development plan and a gas price of around USD 4 per million British thermal units for Farzad-B in 2018. The Indian consortium has so far invested around USD 85 million in the block. The contract provides for the Indian consortium to be paid back the expense together with a fixed rate of return.

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Natural gas exploration process begins in Odisha’s Puri

Oil India has launched drilling operation for exploration of underground oil and natural gas in the Gop block of Odisha’s Puri district after a seismic survey found presence of reserves in the area, reports said on Sunday, September 18.

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Oil India officials had last month paid over Rs. 1 crore to 37 landowners, whose land has been marked for oil exploration in the area. Oil India has taken eight acres of land on lease for three years for the purpose. The step was taken after a seismic survey found oil and natural gas reserves at two places – Kushupur and Chitra – in Gop block.

The research team found oil and natural gas on eight acre in Kusupur gram panchayat and another patch of land in Chitra gram panchayat under Gop tehsil through satellite mapping. A six-member team of the company also visited Kusupur in April to discuss land acquisition plans with the farmers.

Lands have been taken on a three-year lease basis at the rate of Rs 51,000 for 101.17 square metres, sources said. The exact location of the new spot could be ascertained after commercial exploitation. While the process has started, deep drilling will be taken up later to determine the quantum and quality of reserve, sources said, adding that the survey began in November 2000 in eight coastal districts of the state.

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Policy Matters/ Gas Pricing/ Others

Gas pricing panel seeks more time to suggest fair price of natural gas

The government-appointed Sh. Kirit Parikh panel to review the pricing of natural gas has sought more time to submit its report as it does a tightrope walk between the expectations of producers and consumers.

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The panel headed by Parikh, a member of the disbanded Planning Commission, was told to suggest a “fair price of natural gas to the end-consumer” by the end of September. It has now sought time till November-end, but the government is willing to give it time till mid-October. A decision on the extension will be taken next week after oil secretary Pankaj Jain returns from his foreign trip.

The brief for the panel was to review the way prices of gas produced in India are fixed. The panel includes representatives of gas producers association, ONGC and OIL. It has a member from private city gas players, GAIL, IOC and a member from the fertiliser ministry. While the producers insisted on complete market freedom as had been guaranteed in the contracts they signed for finding and producing the fuel, consumers wanted a “fair price”.

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Nod to Uttar Pradesh Biofuel Policy-2022

The Cabinet on Tuesday, September 27, cleared two important policies aimed at taking the state’s economy to USD 1 trillion. As part of that, a nod was given to the UP Biofuel Policy-2022 and to the new MSME policy.

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Urban development minister Sh. AK Sharma said that the biofuel policy would help in reducing pollution by preventing burning of municipal waste, agricultural and mandi waste and that from sugar mills. All this could be processed into biofuel, reducing the dependency on imported gas and oil and increasing farmers’ incomes.

The policy will be in place for five years and is expected to bring in investment of Rs 5,500 crore. It will include production of compressed biogas, biocoal, bioethanol and biodiesel. The incentive will mainly be provided on production. For compressed biogas a subsidy of Rs 75 lakh per ton, up to a maximum of Rs 20 crore will be given. For plants with an investment of Rs 50 crore or more, the government will pay for five km of the approach road.

It also approved of simplification of the ‘Engineering, Procurement and Construction’ (EPC) mode for constructing any government building which costs Rs 50 crore or more. For this, an EPC Mission will be set up under the planning department which will monitor the entire process from formulation of the DPR to completion of the project. It will work like a project management unit. A governing body will be set up under the chairpersonship of the chief secretary which will give policy related advice to the EPC.

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IGL to not pass any gas price hikes to customers in short-term

Indraprastha Gas Ltd (IGL) is not going to pass any increase in gas prices to customers in the short-term and will absorb them, said Sh. Pawan Kumar, Director-Commercial, IGL on Friday, September 23. The government of India is working on the customers’ ease of getting CNG and PNG at an affordable price.

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Domestic gas prices are expected to go up further by almost 100% from October 1.  After August 15, 2022, the unified base price is around $6.26 per MMBtu. The company is getting around 90% of the APM, non-APM gas and 10% it is mixing from Spot LNG, which is costing around $17-18 per MMBtu.

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After crude, Centre now expedites plan to set up strategic gas reserve

India is expediting a plan to set up a strategic gas reserve on the lines of its strategic petroleum reserve (SPR), amid a global energy crisis triggered by the Russia-Ukraine conflict that has sent fuel prices soaring. Existing LNG tunnels and exhausted oil wells are likely to be utilized for the gas reserve, along with the construction of new underground infrastructure such as large salt caverns.

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The storage facilities may be chosen close to the pipeline infrastructure so that the fuel can be easily transported in times of need.

 The plan for a strategic gas reserve was first considered last year but was shelved for the time being as India had assured supplies. However, the government has revived the plan, with the world staring at an energy crisis.

The country’s gas demand is expected to be driven by the fertilizer industry, power, city gas distribution, and steel sectors. Imports and local production of natural gas in FY22 resulted in supplies of 64.8 billion cu. m in the country. India produced 34,024 million standard cu. m (mscm) of gas in FY22 and is also expanding its national gas grid to 35,000km from the current 20,000km.

The strategic reserve will be in line with the strategic petroleum reserves. Several countries have built storage systems to ensure supply security. The US has nearly a third of global gas storage while Russia, Ukraine, Canada and Germany together account for another major portion. China also has gas storage facilities.

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LNG Use / LNG Development and Shipping

India’s gas consumption down 10% in August

India’s natural gas consumption in August was 5.2bn m3, down 10.3% year/year, the government declared on September 20. Cumulative consumption of natural gas during April-August, the first five months of the 2022-2023 financial year (FY2023), was 26.32bn m3, down from 27.37bn m3 in the previous year.

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The biggest consumer of natural gas in India is the fertiliser industry. Other major consumers are power, CGD and petrochemicals sectors.

India’s natural gas production last month was 2.89bn m3, down 1% yr/yr. Cumulative natural gas production in April-August was 14.33bn m3, up 2.5% yr/yr. The country’s natural gas output in FY2022 was 34bn m3, up 18.7% yr/yr. Crisil Ratings told NGW in early April that India’s natural gas output in FY23 is expected to rise by 10-15% yr/yr.

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India forced to buy LNG at double the price after gas supply from Russia stops

The supplier, formerly a subsidiary of Russia’s state-owned Gazprom, has diverted gas meant for India to Europe amidst a gas crisis. Industrial costs in India started going up because of rising prices of LNG late last year, which was months before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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Since the war broke out, India has defied global pressure to import Russian crude at discounted rates to tackle inflation.

India’s largest gas distributor GAIL paid record high rates of $40 per million British thermal units for three LNG shipments last week. It had to do so because its supplier Gazprom Marketing and Trading Singapore, has diverted LNG to Europe, which is facing an impending gas shortage this winter.

Now 36 cargoes with 2.5 million tonnes of LNG which GAIL was supposed to receive from GMTS in 2022, are suddenly unavailable. This means that the state-owned distributor will have to impose rationing on LNG for industries, among which the power sector will be hit hard. High LNG rates had already forced Indian units generating 25GW of power from gas to shut down in July.

The government is also exploring CNG imports to reduce the dependence on LNG, but due to lower energy density, India will need an exporter within 1500 nautical miles.

Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) is making spot purchases from the United States (US), Qatar and Australia to bridge the gap after a former unit of Russia’s Gazprom defaulted on LNG deliveries, two sources aware of the matter told PSU Watch. Gazprom is paying a ‘meagre’ penalty for the liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargoes it has failed to deliver to India since early June to absolve itself of all contractual liabilities.

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India’s first LNG trucks, a ‘major evolution’ in commercial transport

Earlier this month clean fuel company Blue Energy Motors launched India’s first liquefied natural gas (LNG)-fuelled green truck manufacturing plant in Chakan, Pune. The facility was inaugurated by Sh. Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister, Road Transport and Highways. Now, on September 12, BEM announced that it has launched its first LNG trucks with BS VI-compliant engines.

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The facility was opened on September 02 and reflects BEM’s intention to ‘disrupt the trucking industry in India’ by manufacturing clean energy, near-zero emission trucks.  Having signed an agreement with FPT Industrial – the global powertrain brand of Iveco Group (IVG) – the company will launch its first trucks with FPT’s BS VI-compliant engines, capable of reducing CO2 emissions up to 30% compared to ‘conventional solutions’.

Commenting on the announcement of the new facility, Sh. Anirudh Bhuwalka, CEO, BEM, stated here that India’s first LNG truck manufacturing facility in Chakan, Pune, is first step towards pioneering the green trucking revolution. Further, he added that BEM aim to decarbonise the environment by providing an immediate solution and breaking the barriers of economic returns.

The first model will be a 5528 4×2 tractor equipped with the FPT N67 NG engine, utilising a 1,000 litre-cryogenic tank for transportation of the LNG cargo.  Regarded as one of the powerful natural gas engines in the market, FPT’s technology is compatible with compressed natural gas (CNG), LNG, and biomethane. 

The engine harnesses stoichiometric combustion to optimise fuel consumption and reduce noise in comparison with diesel engines.  This agreement is of the utmost importance for FPT Industrial, now and in the future, as we want our leading technologies to play a key role to support the ecological transition of one of the world’s largest vehicle markets.

The union government currently has a plan to set up 1,000 LNG stations over the next five years, including on major highways and trunk routes across the country to support longer-distance, heavy duty haulage.

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Electric Mobility/ Hydrogen/ Bio- Methane

RIL in driver’s seat in $ 74 bn green hydrogen opportunity

RIL’s green hydrogen foray is part of its Net Carbon Zero target by 2035. Falling renewable cost and scale economics will lower green hydrogen cost. Given the capex intensity, RIL’s strong balance sheet and backward integration puts it in the driver’s seat in the US$ 74 billion opportunity.

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RIL’shydrogen business is worth $8 billion (Rs 100/share) at a 20% discount to European benchmark. Backward integration into solar PV and energy storage system, access to cheap land, GW scale renewable generation facilities will lower its renewable power cost making its hydrogen production cost competitive.

India aims to produce 5 mmt green H2 annually by 2030 requiring US$ 130 billion in capex per our est. Policy support, including capital subsidies, eliminating charges on renewable power, mandated use in refining and fertilizer, higher fertilizer subsidy funding and development of a carbon trading market should aid adoption.

Despite its higher cost, govt. in major economies are accelerating green H2 adoption to cut carbon emissions. The EU recently identified investments of EUR 63-78 billion in the H2 ecosystem and 20 mmtpa consumption target in 2030 backed up by a funding plan. Four polluting industries accounting for 98% of global H2 demand can replace grey H2 produced in their facilities with green. High transportation cost, absence of pipelines and low well-to-wheel efficiency compared to batteries make usage in transportation and electricity generation challenging.

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India to get 1st hydrogen-powered train on next Independence day: Union Govt.

India will roll out its first hydrogen-powered train, designed, developed and manufactured indigenously, on the next Independence Day, stated by Union minister Sh. Ashwini Vaishnaw.

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India has been able to build trains which are among the best in the world and the next big thing will be when the hydrogen-powered train is rolled out on August 15, 2023. The world’s first hydrogen-powered train was rolled out in Germany last month. This gas is an environment-friendly fuel.

At the programme on Thursday, the minister said that a train, built at the Integral Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai, was recently found to be among the best five trains in the world. It moved at a speed of 180 km per hour which amazed the world, he said.

Referring to the Vande Bharat Express train, Union minister Sh. Ashwini Vaishnaw said it took only 52 seconds to move from zero speed to 100 km per hour while the famed Bullet train of Japan took 55 seconds for the same.  Sh. Vaishnaw said Hon’ble PM Narendra Modi had asked the engineers to build world-class trains which should be safe, stable and consume less energy besides running at a good speed.

Attention was also being provided to cleanliness of railway stations and a satellite map had been prepared to identify 132 districts headquarter towns that needed railway connectivity. The Detailed Project Report for the same was being prepared, the railway minister said. He said punctuality of trains in India was around 89 per cent at present, which needed to reach 100%.

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Natural Gas / Transnational Pipelines/ Others

Brazil’s NTS to invest $2.4 billion to expand gas pipelines, storage

Brazilian natural gas pipeline operator NTS is set to spend 12 billion reais ($2.4 billion) over the next eight years on projects such as a network expansion and gas storage. NTS’ plan comes as Brazil is seeking ways to increase its gas supplies and about five years after Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management acquired a controlling stake in the firm from state-owned Petrobras.

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The funds will be directed mainly to building liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage facilities in Rio de Janeiro state and expanding the transport capacity of the Campinas-Rio gas pipeline. The conduit carries gas from the “pre-salt” area off the coast of Rio state to Petrobras’ largest refinery, Replan.

Brazil lacks logistical solutions for unusual surges in domestic demand, he said, as happened during the country’s 2021 drought, which triggered a big drop in hydropower output, forcing a sharp increase in the use of thermoelectric plants as well as higher energy prices. NTS’ investment package also includes building a compression station, aiming to increase Replan’s gas output.

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Spain-France natural gas pipeline boosts capacity by 18%

An existing natural gas pipeline from Spain to France via the Pyrenees has boosted its capacity by 18% and could be used immediately if France requests it, Spanish Energy Transition Minister Teresa Ribera said on Thursday, September 24, while on a visit to one of the pipeline’s compressor stations.

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Spain and France are currently connected via two gas pipelines which could carry gas from Spain to its neighbor to the north if necessary.  The interconnector which passes through Irun has successfully completed the technical start-up tests to increase capacity by 18% over current levels, which means that if fully utilized in the direction of France, the interconnector could provide 6% of France’s natural gas consumption.

The Spanish minister said that the increased capacity of the interconnector at Irun will strengthen Europe’s gas supply security.  Spain does not depend on Russia for gas supply, but it has six LNG import terminals and lies on the route of pipelines from North Africa to Europe. Spain, however, is not well connected via pipelines to other European countries, limiting European access to LNG imports.  Spain proposes a third pipeline to France and onto central Europe, but France seems reluctant to have it built.

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USA: Deadline for North Dakota natural gas pipeline project extended for third time

The North Dakota Industrial Commission for the third time has extended its deadline for companies to submit bids for grants to assist with construction of a high-pressure transmission pipeline. The state of North Dakota extended the deadline to Dec. 15, 2022, after it received no bids by the Aug. 15 deadline for the pipeline that would carry natural gas from east to west to existing and proposed agricultural manufacturing plants in Grand Forks. The previous deadline was May 15, 2022.

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The North Dakota Industrial Commission voted at its Aug. 26 meeting to extend the deadline to Dec. 15, said Justin Kringstad, North Dakota Pipeline Authority director. The pipeline project would be funded, in part, by $150 million which North Dakota legislators made available to the industrial commission during a special session in November 2021.

The amount includes $10 million that was designated to transport natural gas to Grand Forks County, where Fufeng Group Ltd. has proposed to build a wet corn milling plant and Northern Plains Nitrogen, a fertilizer plant, are potential customers. Both of those projects are in the development phase. No companies had submitted bids for the $150 million between Aug. 26, 2022, and Sept. 19, 2022, Kringstad said. The funding that lawmakers approved during the November 2021 special session is available until June 30, 2023.

If no companies submit bids for the grant by the Dec. 15, 2022 deadline, the North Dakota Legislature likely would consider whether to modify the grant proposals during the 2023 Legislative session.

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USA: Allseas to install 700-kilometer natural gas pipeline offshore Mexico

Allseas has won a contract with TC Energy (TCE) to install the offshore stretch of the Southeast Gateway Pipeline in the Gulf of Mexico. the 700-kilometer natural gas pipeline will run south along the coast from Tuxpan through the Gulf of Mexico to Coatzacoalcos and Dos Bocas.

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Allseas’ scope covers engineering and construction, as well as the fabrication of tie-in structures. Pipelaying is expected to commence at the end of 2023, with the pipeline planned to be in service by mid-2025. The company said that the Southeast Gateway Pipeline is its second pipeline in Mexico, in addition to the installation of the 685-kilometer long Sur de Texas-Tuxpan in 2017 which moves natural gas supply from basins in Texas to southern Mexico.

TCE is building the $4.5 billion deepwater gas pipeline in partnership with the Mexican state-owned power utility Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) to secure the power supply in southeastern Mexico. Germany’s EUROPIPE recently received an order to supply the pipe for the project. The Southeast Gateway Pipeline will transport around 37 million cubic meters of natural gas per day.

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USA: $30 million earmarked for Pennyrile Region natural gas pipeline construction

$30 million in funding was presented to help the southern Pennyrile Region build a critical natural gas pipeline to support rapid business growth. The new line will extend roughly 50 miles through Christian, Todd and Trigg counties and have the capacity to serve Caldwell and Lyon counties.

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The route will open a large, underserved area of Western Kentucky for industrial development.

The recommendation of Rep. Jason Petrie of Elkton, lawmakers passed – and the Governor signed – House Bill 1, which allocates $30 million over the next two years, $15 million this fiscal year and $15 million next fiscal year, to help build a new pipeline that will serve the counties.

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Mubadala hits gas off Malaysia

UAE-based Mubadala has made a gas discovery at block SK320 some 220 km off the coast of Bintulu, Sarawak, in Malaysia, its local partner Petronas said on September 20.

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The Cengkih-1 well was drilled to a depth of 1,680 m last month, encountering a gas column of more than 110 m in carbonate reservoirs, Petronas said. Mubadala operates the block with a 55% interest in its production sharing contract, while Petronas has 25% and Shell has 20%.

Petronas said the discovery built “on a string of exploration successes in the Central Luconia region,” confirming the “large potential” for the region’s carbonate play. It noted the find was in close proximity to other existing facilities, including at the Pegaga discovery, put into production in March.

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Cheniere and Whistler Pipeline to form JV for natural gas pipeline in USA

The ADCC pipeline will run approximately 43 miles from Whistler Pipeline’s terminus to Cheniere’s liquefaction facility in Texas. US LNG exporter Cheniere Energy and units of Whistler Pipeline have agreed to form a joint venture to construct the ADCC natural gas pipeline.

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According to Whistler, the 42-inch ADCC pipeline will run approximately 43 miles from Whistler Pipeline ‘s terminus to Cheniere’s Corpus Christi liquefaction facility in Texas. Subject to customary regulatory and other approvals, the pipeline project is scheduled to be commissioned in 2024.

The project is expected to transport up to 1.7 billion cubic feet per day of (Bcf/d) natural gas and will be expandable to 2.5Bcf/d of natural gas. Whistler Pipeline is owned by a consortium including Whitewater , MPLX LP, and a JV between Stonepeak and West Texas Gas .

The development comes amid the surging demand for US liquefied natural gas from Europe that is scrambling to find alternative resources to replace Russian gas. In May 2022, MPLX , WhiteWater Midstream and a JV between Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners and West Texas Gas made the final investment decision on the Whistler Pipeline expansion project to increase the mainline capacity from 2Bcf/d to 2.5Bcf/d.

The project, which involves the installation of three new compressor stations, is planned to be commissioned in September 2023. In June 2022, the Cheniere board of directors made a positive financial investment decision for the Corpus Christi Stage three Liquefaction Project (CCL Stage three). It is expected to produce more than ten million tonnes per annum of LNG.

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West African nations to build Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline

A number of West African states have signed an MoU to build a pipeline from Nigeria to Morocco to supply gas to all West African countries and open a new channel of export to Europe. 

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The agreement was signed in Rabat, Morocco, between Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Kingdom of Morocco.

The MoU attests to the commitment of ECOWAS and all the countries crossed by the gas pipeline, to contribute to the feasibility and technical studies, the mobilisation of resources and execution of the Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline project.

This project, once completed, will supply gas to all the countries of West Africa and will open a new channel of export to Europe. It is a strategic project that will contribute towards improving the living standards of the population, integrating the economies in the region, decreasing the level of desertification thanks to a sustainable and reliable gas supply and a reduction in or outright end to gas flaring, among others. With the launch of the project, efforts will be made to attract public and private investors including multilateral or commercial banks, pension fund, insurance companies, among others. The project will span 6,000km and cost $25 billion. The financing of the project is expected to involve several stakeholders.

The signing of the MoU witnessed the participation of government officials of the Kingdom of Morocco, Nadia Fettah Alaoui, Minister for Economy and Finance, Mohcine Jazouli, Minister of State for Public Policy Evaluation, Convergence and Investments. Finally, a courtesy call was paid to Nasser Bourita, Minister for Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccans Abroad.

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Kuwait Oil Company says to increase natural gas production

The state-owned Kuwait oil company aims to increase natural gas production to meet local demand, the company’s acting chief executive officer Mr. Khaled Nayef Al Otaibi said on Sunday, September 19. Kuwait produces 650 million cubic feet of gas per day, and plans to increase it to one billion.

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Mr. Sheikh Nawaf Saud al-Sabah also said the Gulf state currently produces more than 2.8 million barrels per day of oil in accordance with its OPEC quota. He said Kuwait has plans to increase crude oil production whenever the market needs it, but currently the customers of the state-owned corporation still demand the same volumes with no change.

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USA: Mexico expands its gas pipeline network to 18,721 km

Mexico‘s gas pipeline network continues to expand and, as of June 30, 2022, consists of 18,721 kilometers (km), of which 10,336 km make up the Integrated National Natural Gas Transportation and Storage System. On October 1, 2020, the Zapotlanejo Gas Pipeline, located in the state of Jalisco, began commercial operation.

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This pipeline is approximately five kilometers long and has two diameters of 24 and 30 inches.

It is a new injection point that supplies natural gas from the Waha Basin in the United States. This pipeline is 14 km long and 36 inches in diameter, which strengthens the supply of natural gas to the Yucatan Peninsula. According to the Ministry of Energy (Sener),the average flow of this pipeline during the period between September 2021 and June 2022 was 141 MMcfd.

The average flow of this pipeline during the period between September 2021 and June 2022 was 141. Information from the U.S. Department of Commerce shows that the United States imported more than 240 million barrels of heavy crude oil from Mexico in 2020 and exported more than 1 million barrels per day of refined petroleum products to Mexico, the largest foreign buyer of U.S. refined petroleum products (more than 70% of domestic consumption of gasoline, diesel, natural gas and jet fuel).

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New section of China-Russia east-route natural gas pipeline put into operation

A section of the China-Russia east-route natural gas pipeline linking Anping, North China’s Hebei Province with Taian, East China’s Shandong Province, has been put into operation, with a designed capacity of 18.9 billion cubic meters a year.

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The Anping-Taian section is an important part of the southern section of the China-Russia east-route natural gas pipeline. The total length of the line is 320 kilometers, with a pipe diameter of 1,219 mm and a design pressure of 10 megapascals (MPa). Construction of the section started in October 2020.

The full China-Russia east route is a pipeline system spanning more than 8,000 kilometers, with a 3,000-km section in Russia and a 5,111-km stretch in China. It has been divided into three sections: the northern section from Heilongjiang’s Heihe to Changling in Northeast China’s Jilin Province; the middle section from Changling to Yongqing in North China’s Hebei Province; and the southern section from Yongqing to East China’s Shanghai.

Russian gas exports to China via the pipeline have continued to increase in volume, and in the first six months of this year, they were up by 63.4%.

China is the world’s largest importer of natural gas. About half of all China’s natural gas consumption is imported and about two-thirds of imported gas enters in the form of LNG. The construction of the Russian-Chinese natural gas pipeline transiting through Mongolia will begin in 2024. The pipeline will deliver previously Europe-bound gas from western Siberian fields to China for the first time and has a target date of being online in 2030.

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Nigeria, Morocco sign MoU on gas pipe

Nigeria’s NNPC announced September 15 that an MoU had been signed to allow development of the Nigeria-Morocco gas pipeline project, which could facilitate exports to Europe.

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The MoU was agreed by Morocco’s National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mining and Mines and Nigeria’s NNPC together with the Economic Community of West African States, a trade bloc that includes Nigeria.

The 3bn ft3/d project would cross a dozen West African markets including Nigeria before terminating in Morocco, at a total length of 5,600 km. The Nigeria-Morocco pipeline has been on the table for several years. The two sides have said previously it could take 25 years to deliver and billions of dollars in investment. At present, much of Nigeria’s gas export is absorbed by the NNPC/Shell-backed Nigeria LNG export facility.

Signing the MoU on behalf of Nigeria, NNPC’s CEO Mele Kyari praised the commitment of the two signatory governments and argued the pipeline would result in wealth creation across west African communities. NNPC is now preparing to procure land in Nigeria for the pipeline’s first compressor station. The route is expected to start in Nigeria’s Brass Island and would terminate in northern Morocco, allowing for a future connection to the Maghreb pipeline.

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UK: Enbridge looking to expand natural gas service into Cherry Valley

Prince Edward County Committee Of The Whole received a proposal from Enbridge regarding expanding gas services to homes in Cherry Valley. In a deputation to Prince Edward County Committee of the Whole, Sonia Fazari,

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Senior Advisor of Municipal and Stakeholder Engagement from Enbridge laid out plans to connect 232 properties to the pipe network, including over 200 homes and 20 businesses.

Fazari stressed the green impact of moving people from propane and oil heating to comparatively more environmentally friendly natural gas. The project is predicted to cost just over $5 million. If approved, construction would start in late 2023. The committee received the deputation but did not make any commitments.

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Natural Gas / LNG Utilization

Germany nationalizes its biggest natural gas importer

Germany is nationalizing Uniper, its biggest importer of natural gas, as part of an €8 billion ($7.9 billion) plan to prevent an energy shortage this winter. The German government will hold around 99% of Uniper and 8% of its Finnish parent company Fortum (FOJCF),

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German Economy Minister Robert Habeck told journalists in Berlin on Wednesday, September 28. Uniper provides 40% of the country’s gas supply and is crucial for large companies and private consumers in Europe’s biggest economy.

In July, Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced the government would step in to bail out Uniper with a package worth up to €15 billion ($15.3 billion), after it was brought to its knees by months of Russian supply cuts and soaring spot market prices. Under the rescue deal, the government committed to provide €7.7 billion ($7.8 billion) to cover potential future losses, while state-run bank KfW agreed to increase its credit facility by €7 billion ($7.1 billion).

The announcement follows a commitment made earlier this month to cap average household energy bills at £2,500 ($2,834) a year for the next two years. UK finance minister Kwasi Kwarteng said he would detail the overall cost of the program on Friday.

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CPV Proposes 1,800 MW Plant for Natural Gas-Rich West Virginia Using CCS

Competitive Power Venture Inc. (CPV) has proposed a 1,800 MW combined-cycle natural gas power plant in West Virginia that could allow the Appalachian Basin production leader to create and distribute more low-carbon power.

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CPV announced the potential $3 billion investment in Charleston, WV, earlier this month alongside Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV). Maryland-based CPV also disclosed the project could be one of the first major infrastructure investments to take advantage of incentives under the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (IRA).

CPV specifically plans to use the 45Q federal tax credit expanded and extended under the IRA, according to the company. Project developers can now receive the credit for projects starting construction before 2033, and the option of receiving a direct payment for the first five years of the project.

The plant would supply wholesale energy customers on the Eastern Interconnection through the PJM Interconnection LLC regional transmission organization. After permitting and construction, CPV estimates the plant could start producing low-carbon electricity by the end of the decade.

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USA natural gas consumption forecast to jump in 2022

Natural gas consumption in the U.S. is expected to increase by 3.6 Bcf/d to 86.6 Bcf/d this year, the highest annual natural gas consumption on record, according to a recent forecast from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

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The increase in demand comes despite a large increase in natural gas prices this year. Within the electric power sector, consumption of natural gas in the first eight months of the year has averaged 33.2 Bcf/d, up 2.0 Bcf/d from the same period one year ago. The roughly 6% increase in consumption has come despite an average price of $6.56/MMBtu in the same eight-month period, up from $3.43/MMBtu for all of 2021.

The consumption of natural gas in the electric power sector has increased because of limitations at coal-fired power plants and weather-driven demand. Natural gas was key to meeting electricity demand throughout the country despite a cold January and a hot summer, but that may shift in the last part of 2022. Looking ahead to 2023, the agency said it expected natural gas consumption in the residential and commercial sectors to be similar to 2022 levels.

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China’s LNG imports drop 28% in August

Chinese LNG imports in August declined 28.1% year/year to 4.72mn metric tons. The cumulative LNG imports in the first eight months of 2022 came in at 40.64mn mt, down 21.3% yr/yr. China’s pipeline gas imports last month rose 9% yr/yr to 4.13mn mt, the data showed.

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The import volumes during the January-August period were up 10.6% yr/yr to 30.40mn mt. China last year imported a record 78.93mn mt of LNG, up 18.3% yr/yr, customs department data published in January showed.

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Iran to soon import 9 mn-cubic meter Russian gas daily: Ministry

The Iranian Oil Ministry has said that the country will soon purchase 9 million cubic meters per day of gas from Russia through Azerbaijan. The ministry announced the plan in a report providing details of a $40-billion deal between the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and Russia’s state-owned gas producer Gazprom reached in July.

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The ministry added it will soon receive 6 million cubic meters per day of gas from Russia under a swap deal to export them in LNG to other countries from southern Iran. The deal also includes the completion of gas pipelines from Iran to Pakistan and Oman and finishing a number of LNG production projects in the country.

The ministry’s news service Shana has reported that the development of Iran’s Kish and North Pars gas fields, as well as six oilfields, boosting pressure in the South Pars Gas Field, completion of LNG projects, swap of gas and petroleum products and construction of gas transfer pipelines are some of the deal’s highlights.

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Japan boosts natural gas imports from Russia

Japan, the world’s largest importer of liquefied natural gas (LNG), imported over 200% more of the fossil fuel from Russia in August. Japan buys two-thirds of its LNG from Australia, Malaysia and Qatar, according to Kommersant. Russia accounts for 9% of Japan’s LNG imports, followed by the United States with 6%.

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According to the finance ministry’s customs data, Japan shipped 450,000 metric tons of LNG from Russia last month — a 211.2% increase from August 2021. Japan’s LNG shipment boost follows Russia’s replacement of the Sakhalin-2 LNG project’s operator with a domestic entity in response to “unfriendly” Western sanctions.

The move sparked uncertainty over the continuity of LNG supplies, though Japanese buyers renewed contracts to buy LNG from Sakhalin-2 after they were guaranteed the same financial terms by the new Russian operating company. August 2022 data published by Japan’s finance ministry showed a 67.4% increase in total imports from Russia and a 21.5% decrease in exports.

Japan has joined its ally the United States and other Western countries in imposing unprecedented sanctions on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine. Scores of Japanese industrial, tech and consumer companies have left or suspended operations in Russia since the February invasion.

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Global LNG Development

Inpex, Indonesia’s PLN extend MoU on LNG supply

Japan’s Inpex has extended an MoU with Indonesian utility PLN concerning long-term LNG supply and expanded the MoU to incorporate joint studies in hydrogen, ammonia and CCS in relation to the Abadi LNG project, the company declared on September 27.

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Inpex plans to supply LNG from the Abadi project to natural gas-fired power plants in Indonesia owned and operated by PLN. Inpex and its partner, Shell, are currently conducting a study on the introduction of CCS and cost reduction and are considering the production of blue hydrogen and ammonia using natural gas produced from the project.

The scope of the MoU includes conducting joint studies on supplying blue hydrogen and ammonia using natural gas produced from the project as co-firing fuel for thermal power plants in Indonesia that PLN owns and operates, as well as on the capture and transport of CO2 emitted from thermal power plants in Indonesia and the storage of this CO2 in the Abadi gas field.

The $20bn Abadi LNG project is expected to produce 9.5mn metric tons/year of LNG. The project plan has undergone a number of changes in recent years. Initially, the development of the Masela offshore block involved a floating LNG plant.

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Egypt’s export of natural gas and LNG hits $8B in FY2021/2022

Egypt’s natural gas and LNG export revenue recorded $8 billion during the 2021/2022 fiscal year (FY) after exports increased by 7.2 million tons, revealed a cabinet post earlier today. Exports during FY2013/2014 recorded 1.9 million tons.

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Egypt exported 8.9 billion cubic meters (bcm) of LNG last year and 4.7 bcm in the first five months of 2022, according to Refinitiv Eikon data. The government has noted that gas exports have grown since the introduction of the electricity rationing plan in August, which aimed to increase foreign currency reserves by diverting more natural gas for export. The plan includes limiting the use of strong lights in commercial buildings such as malls, and that all air condition units must be keep at no less than 25 degrees Celsius.

The government hopes to reduce the amount of gas used to generate electricity by 15%, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly said in August. Accelerating growth in Egypt’s natural gas supplies, driven by the discovery of the Mediterranean’s largest field, turned it from a net importer to an exporter in late 2018.

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Germany inks gas deal with UAE

Germany’s Chancellor Mr. Olaf Scholz has signed a gas deal with leaders of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), during a two-day Gulf visit, as Europe’s largest economy continues efforts to find alternatives to Russian supplies.

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Mr. Scholz met with Emirati President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi on Sunday to secure fresh shipments of liquified natural gas, or LNG, from the Gulf state, UAE state news agency WAM reported.

The contract agrees delivery of 137,000 cubic meters of LNG to arrive in northern Germany at the end of this year, according to German energy provider RWE. Scholz visited Saudi Arabia, UAE and Qatar during his trip, seeking to deepen ties with the Gulf and find alternative sources of energy after Germany pledged to cut its dependence on Russian gas.

The deal, with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, or ADNOC, includes a memorandum of understanding for multi-year supplies of LNG, reported Reuters, noting that ADNOC has also agreed to reserve an unspecified number of LNG cargoes for Germany in 2023.

Terminals in Germany will eventually be able to handle up to 12.5 billion cubic meters of LNG per year, or 13 percent of the country’s gas consumption, according to data from research company Enerdata. The chancellor also signed a deal with the UAE for the supply of diesel to Germany this month, and further monthly diesel supplies.

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Construction starts on Germany’s stade LNG terminal

Hanseatic Energy Hub announced September 26 the start of construction of Germany’s Stade LNG import terminal, with development of the LNG jetty starting ahead of schedule. Stade LNG is one of five floating LNG facilities in Germany’s energy security pipeline.

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This is the second construction start in recent days on Germany’s fleet of floating storage and regasification units (FSRU).

Germany’s federal government and the state administration for Saxony have each pledged €100mn to finance Stade LNG’s development. The project can now begin following an expedited approval process by lower Saxony’s state water management agency, along with Germany’s Coastal Protection and Nature Conversation board.

Stade LNG is anticipated to start delivering regasified LNG by the end of 2023. From 2026, the facility will be repurposed as an onshore LNG landing port operated by Hanseatic Energy Hub. Hanseatic Energy Hub has already held a binding open season tender for loading slots through Stade LNG.

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France’s TotalEnergies injects further $1.5 bn into Qatar gas

France’s TotalEnergies signed a new $1.5 billion deal to help expand Qatar’s natural gas production as Europe scrambles to find new energy sources to replace Russian supplies. But TotalEnergies chairman Patrick Pouyanne and

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Qatar Energy Minister Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi expressed surprise at reports that Germany was resisting 20-year contracts insisting that Europe must agree longer contracts to guarantee supplies. TotalEnergies would invest $1.5 billion in the new field. 25% of the field is to be reserved for foreign firms and more deals will be announced in coming weeks.

Europe had rejected the long-term deals that Qatar seeks, but a change in attitude has been forced as it faces a looming winter of energy shortages. Qatar is one of the world’s top LNG producers, alongside the United States, Australia and Russia.  State-owned Qatar Energy estimates the North Field holds about 10 percent of the world’s known natural gas reserves. LNG from the North Field is expected to start coming on line in 2026.

The offshore reserves extend over the maritime border with Iran, whose efforts to exploit its adjacent South Pars field have been hindered by US sanctions. South Korea, Japan and China have traditionally been the main markets for Qatari LNG. Qatar’s gas is among the cheapest to produce and has fuelled an economic boom in the tiny Gulf emirate, which is now one of the world’s wealthiest countries.

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USA weekly export amounts to 21 LNG carriers

In the latest Short-Term Energy Outlook for the week between 15 and 21 September, EIA reports 21 LNG vessels departed the United States. Seven LNG carriers departed from Sabine Pass, four from Corpus Christi, three from Cameron, two from Cove Point, three from

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Calcasieu Pass and two from Elba Island. They held a combined LNG-carrying capacity of 79 billion cubic feet.

The Henry Hub spot price rose fell 70 cents from $8.69 per million British thermal units (MMBtu) last Wednesday to $7.99/MMBtu this week. Natural gas deliveries to US LNG export facilities increased by 0.4 Bcf/d to an average of 11.6 Bcf/d this week.

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Germany: Deutsche ReGas announces start of construction for LNG terminal in Lubmin

On 20 September 2022, construction started for the first completely privately-funded FSRU-LNG terminal ‘Deutsche Ostsee’, developed by the Lubminer Company, Deutsche ReGas.

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The construction activities serve to strengthen the port for unusually large ships and the creation of a secure berth on the east quay of the Lubmin industrial port.

In particular, stronger bollards and some dolphins must be brought in, as well as a sheet piling box to be erected. In addition, maintenance dredging work is carried out, to ensure the depth permitted for the port. Landside will also be a part relocated to the street, set up a security zone and an overpass for the connecting line and a gangway are to be built. Since it is a question of construction work on the site of the Lubmin industrial port, the Port made the necessary reports to the competent authorities and required applications made. The last pending permit is from 14 September 2022.

The FSRU is managed by the multi-energy group TotalEnergies SE. From 1 December 2022, the LNG terminal is to transport up to 4.5 billion m3 annually into the feed into the German long-distance gas network.

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Australia: The world’s largest floating LNG platform restarts production

The Prelude floating LNG production facility off the coast of Australia has resumed production and exports. Operations at the project were halted earlier this year due to a dispute between the company and workers that led to industrial action.

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Following weeks of negotiations, the two parties managed to strike a deal last month and end the suspension of operations at the facility. The Prelude project has an export capacity of 3.6 million tons of liquefied natural gas annually, as well as 1.3 million tons of condensate and 400,000 tons of liquefied petroleum gas.

It began production in December 2018 and the first LNG was shipped from the facility a year later. It was the top exporter last year as well, with a total of 80.9 million tons of LNG exported globally. It is likely to retain the top-exporter crown this year as well.

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Pakistan’s Largest Fuel Retailer Planning to Build $500 Million LNG Terminal

Pakistan State Oil Co., the nation’s largest fuel importer and retailer, is planning to build a $500 million LNG terminal as part of its strategy to diversify into multiple businesses.

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The import terminal will be located near Karachi and would take four years to complete. Company has an understanding with a few large customers and has begun preliminary preparations for the project that will include Pakistan’s first LNG storage facility.

The South Asian nation has been one of fastest-growing markets for liquefied natural gas, which it mainly uses to generate electricity, after a decline in local production over the last decade. But surging prices, spurred in part by Russia’s war in Ukraine, have seen it struggle to afford the fuel this year, resulting in frequent blackouts. The country currently has two floating LNG import terminals, both near Karachi. Qatar and Mitsubishi Corp. have also said they plan to invest in terminals in Pakistan.

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East Africa: Mozambique set to export first LNG, Join exporting countries

Mozambique is finally joining the ranks of LNG exporting countries, with the first shipments from ENI’s Coral-Sul 3.4m tonnes/year (t/y) floating LNG project due imminently. But any celebrations over that landmark will be tempered by continuing uncertainties over the future of much larger onshore LNG projects, whose development have been disrupted by violent unrest.

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Coral-Sul, located safely offshore with its production facility brought in pre-built from South Korea, was supposed to be the low-risk precursor to two more ambitious onshore projects planned for the Afungi peninsula in northern Mozambique. The region is adjacent to the country’s substantial offshore gas reserves, which are estimated at some 100 trillion cubic feet, the third largest in Africa after Nigeria and Algeria.

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Finland’s Hamina LNG terminal complete, enters commissioning phase

Hamina LNG is nearing the launch of commercial operations at its liquefied natural gas (LNG) import facility in Finland’s Hamina port. The LNG terminal developer, a joint venture consisting of Finland’s Hamina Energy, tech firm Wartsila, and

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Estonia’s energy company Alexela, the facility had achieved mechanical completion and it had started the commissioning phase. The facility features one tank with a capacity of about 30,000 cbm and will supply about 3 TWh per year to the grid. It will also offer truck loading services from two bays and bunkering services.

Hamina LNG said in April that it had planned to launch commercial operations at the delayed project in October this year. After that, it also launched an open season to offer terminal capacity to the market for gas year 2023, starting from October 1, 2022 and ending on September 30, 2023.

The firm is offering the remaining free storage capacity of 12,000 cbm. Besides this small facility, Finland is also building the FSRU-based terminal in Inkoo as part of plans to boost energy security. The FSRU, which can supply more than 5 billion cubic meters per year of regasification capacity, is already on its way to Europe from Argentina.

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LNG as a Marine Fuel/Shipping

Sweden: Furetank signs repeat order for Vinga series dual-fuel tankers

Swedish shipping firm Furetank has reached a contract with China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in Yangzhou for an additional two Vinga series dual-fuel tankers. Designed to provide energy savings, the 17,999 deadweight tonnage (dwt) ships are expected to be delivered in autumn 2024 and spring 2025.

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With the ability to operate on liquefied natural gas (LNG) or liquefied biogas (LBG), the vessels are said to have scored the best Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) value in their segment worldwide. They incorporate a battery hybrid solution along with other features to cut down fuel and energy usage. These features reduce emissions of CO₂, sulphur oxide, nitrogen oxide and hazardous particles.

The vessels will also include a cargo pump and line arrangement to provide safe cargo operations with decreased port turnaround times. The latest order takes the Vinga series count to six this year and 15 altogether. Furetank will commercially operate all of the vessels following delivery.

Last month, Furetank and Algoma Central set up a joint venture (JV) to construct four dual-fuel ice class 1A 17,999dwt product tankers. Each firm will have a 50% stake in the JV, which is called FureBear.

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Explosive market demand boosts China’s LNG shipbuilding

Chinese shipbuilders have secured growing orders for producing LNG vessels this year amid the deepening energy crisis in Europe, which enables the country to enter the race of top-caliber shipbuilders along with South Korea in the construction of LNG tankers.

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China State Shipbuilding Corp’s (CSSC) Dalian Shipbuilding Industry and China Shipbuilding Trading Co landed an order of constructing two large-scale LNG vessels from China Merchants Energy Shipping Co.

Each measuring 295 meters in length and 46.4 meters in width, they are able to hold 175,000 cubic meters of LNG and are compatible with various types of LNG facilities at major ports worldwide, according to a press release on the group’s website. It’s worth noting that the vessels are the first set of LNG tankers which will be built by Dalian Shipyard.

As of the end of July this year, Chinese shipbuilders had landed a total of 32 LNG vessels order, the most annual orders in the country’s history. The explosive demand, together with the dilemma of no LNG tankers being available, has prompted ship-owners to place new orders. In the first eight months of the year, the total number of orders for new LNG vessels reached a record high of 111 globally.

Currently, the world’s shipbuilding center is in Asia, with China, South Korea and Japan holding the majority of the global shipbuilding market. China enjoys advantages in building container vessels and bulk carriers, whereas slightly falls behind South Korea in producing high-value LNG tankers.

Given the high tech requirements and construction challenges, building LNG tankers is generally considered a very complicated undertaking. Before 2022, only four shipbuilders in the world were able to build large-scale LNG tankers: Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding in China and three South Korean shipyards, including Hyundai Heavy Industries, Daewoo Shipbuilding and Samsung Heavy Industries.

When it comes to LNG ship production, China does not lag behind others in terms of technology, and instead, the sector is more correlated with market factors that have impacted the performance of some Chinese shipbuilders, such as the exchange rates and shipyard competitiveness.

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Russia’s first LNG bunkering operation held in the port of Ust-Luga

PAO Sovcomflot and PAO Gazprom Neft have conducted the first operation on bunkering of a sea-going ship with gas fuel. The bunkering of the Korolev Prospect ship from the Dmitry Mendeleev ship was performed in the port of Ust-Luga (Leningrad Region).

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The tanker was loaded with 1,432 cbm of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a marine fuel.

The first bunkering operation was conducted after an extended test programme including connection of the bunkering ship with LNG-powered ships and with shore-based terminals in the Leningrad Region. Working on adopting LNG as a main fuel for large-capacity tankers since 2015, SCF introduced a series of the world’s first LNG-fuelled Aframax tankers in 2018.

In mid-September 2022, Gazpromneft-Marine Bunker, operator of Gazprom Neft’s marine bunkering business, signed an agreement with FSUE Rosmorport on cooperation in organizing of ships bunkering with liquefied natural gas. The bunkering of the Marshall Rokossovsky and General Chernyakhovsky ferries will be conducted by LNG bunkering ship Dmitry Mendeleev.

Russia’s first LNG bunkering ship Dmitry Mendeleev has commenced LNG transportation and LNG bunkering in the ports of the Baltic Sea this September. The 5,800 m³ LNG bunkering ship has a hull adjusted to climate specifics of the North-West Region. It can sail in one-year old ice of up to 0.8 m thick.

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South Korea: DSME receives $425m contract to build two LNG carriers

South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) has reportedly secured a contract worth nearly $425m (KRW595.9bn) to build two liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers. The company received the contract from an undisclosed shipping company based in Oceania.

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The two new LNG carriers are scheduled to be delivered by 16 July 2026, reported Offshore Energy. The contract is believed to be connected to a contract worth $19bn signed by DSME, Hyundai Heavy Industries and Samsung Heavy Industries with Qatar Petroleum in June 2020.

It involves the construction of more than 100 LNG vessels by 2027. According to the Korean shipbuilding industry characteristics, these indicators are intended for the practical evaluation of ESG promotion activities. In July, DSME reached an agreement with contract workers to end a 51-day walkout over a pay raise disagreement.

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EPS charters LNG-fuelled containerships to Crowley

Singapore-based Eastern Pacific Shipping (EPS) has chartered four LNG-powered containerships to US-based logistics and shipping company Crowley, EPS said on September 19.

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These vessels will be fitted with high-pressure ME-GI engines from MAN Energy Solutions, reducing methane slippage to negligible levels and making these vessels the most environmentally efficient in their category.

Each vessel, which will have a capacity of 1,400 TEUs, will feature 300 refrigerated unit plugs to transport perishable cargo. Operating under a long-term time charter to Crowley, the ships will expand the company’s fleet and supply chain capabilities connecting US markets to Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador. The vessels will be built by Korea’s Hyundai Mipo Dockyard and are slated for delivery in 2025.

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

Pennsylvania,USA: Peoples Gas and Pitt partner on pilot program to evaluate the transport of hydrogen in natural gas systems

The University of Pittsburgh and Peoples Gas, an Essential Utilities company, are teaming up to explore the use of hydrogen as a future energy source. A research has been published to study the potential of safely and securely transporting hydrogen through its natural gas systems.

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Initially engineers at Peoples and Pitt’s Swanson School of Engineering will conduct bench-marking and research of existing information and data related to the distribution of hydrogen, focusing on technical issues involved with using natural gas pipelines to transport hydrogen or a blend of hydrogen and natural gas.  Western Pennsylvania is in the heart of the Appalachian Basin, which has abundant natural gas reserves that the energy industry could leverage to become a leader in the development and commercialization of hydrogen.

Hydrogen can serve as a non-carbon source of energy when used in combustion appliances or fuel cells that produce clean electricity. Its potential use as a supplement to natural gas could have an important role in future energy transition strategies in our region to significantly reduce emissions.

Brian Gleeson, the Harry S. Tack Professor and Chair of the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science (MEMS), and Dr. Doug Konitzer, adjunct professor in the department, will lead the project. Both are metallurgists with expertise in materials science and engineering.

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Scotland: ‘World-first’ hydrogen project raises questions about its role in fuelling future homes

On the northern shores of the Firth of Forth, royal blue waters lap against the weathered walls of Methil Docks. The town on Scotland’s east coast is flirting with another era in the energy industry – but it doesn’t appear to be going to plan.

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In what has been dubbed a “world-first project”, called H100, about 300 homes in Methil and neighbouring Buckhaven in Levenmouth were planned to be powered by “green hydrogen” gas from next year. Customers are offered free hydrogen-ready boilers and cookers under the scheme, scheduled to last at least four years.

In the £32m project, National Grid will use something other than natural gas in its distribution network for the first time in what is claimed will be the world’s first 100% hydrogen network for consumers. H100 hopes to address the need for alternative energy sources to gas, not least as heating accounts for about 37% of all UK carbon emissions.

However, the project has been hit by delays including to the construction of a flagship “demonstration facility”. The project is run by the gas distributor SGN and funded by a group of parties including the regulator Ofgem, the Scottish government and the distribution companies Cadent, Northern Gas Networks and Wales and West Utilities.

There are also concerns the choice of location could give unrepresentative nationwide results as the community is one of the most deprived areas in Scotland.

In November 2020, the prime minister set a target to hit five gigawatts of hydrogen capacity and create a “hydrogen town” by 2030. Last year, in the government’s hydrogen strategy, that goal was increased to 10 gigawatts by the same date but did not detail a significant role for hydrogen in domestic heating. Those working on the Fife pilot project will have to move quickly if this scheme is to make a significant contribution to that conversation.

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