Markets

Ivory Coast, Ghana and South Africa are tipped to become front-runners in setting up integrated LNG-to-power projects. Developers can arrange attractive import terms as a glut of new gas supply is entering global markets while demand from key Asian buyers remains subdued. 

Even though natural gas is less carbon-intensive than coal, the overall rise in gas-burn in the power sector – amid competitive fuel economics – has made related pollution levels surpass those of coal. The EIA expects emissions from gas will be 10% greater than those from coal over the course of 2016.

Plans for several LNG-fuelled power plants in Chile have been shelved after none of the projects won contracts at the country’s latest electricity tender. A series of wind and solar power projects secured more than half of the contracts at auction.

Santos, Australia’s third largest gas producer, has spent billions to realise an LNG export project – but now it is struggling to pump enough gas and has to purchase expensive local supplies to feed its Gladstone LNG facility. Power producers down under, meanwhile are facing fuel shortages and call for restrictions on gas exports.

Natural gas production worldwide is projected to increase from 342 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in 2015 to 554 Bcf/d by 2040. According to EIA findings, the largest component of this growth will come from shale resources which will account for up to 30% of global gas production.

To tackle gas shortages and double generating capacity, the Ghanaian government aims to have at least one FSRU in place before the end of this year. Pointing at Ghana’s two main power hubs - one in the west, one in the east - energy minister John Abdulai Jinapor said ”nothing prevents us from putting in two LNG facilities [adjacent to both centres of power generation.]”

Tuesday, 16 August 2016 08:00 / Markets

Iran’s installed capacity tops 75 GW

Grid connection of the Gol Gohar power plant in southern Iran has boosted the country’s nominal installed generating capacity to 75,365 MW. Out of the total, gas-fired capacity currently accounts for just under 26,600 MW – yet more is to come as production of the South Pars gas field ramps up.

Over the summer, operators of gas storage facilities typically build up inventories – but this year inventories in Southern California remain relatively flat. High gas-burn and slightly lower natural gas production have even led to a rare summer net withdrawal from storage.

When launching its 2016 Future Energy Scenarios, National Grid asked shareholders about the impact of the Brexit vote. “The general view was that Great Britain would end up in a greener and more prosperous world in 2036 than we are in today,” it resuméd now, “but there would be a decade of either the environment or the economy suffering.”

Impairments and contingency losses for fossil power stations and gas storage have made E.ON post a net loss of €3.03 billion – a stark contrast with the profit of €1.15 billion a year earlier. The German utility is preparing for the listing of its Uniper unit next month.

JPS, Jamaica’s dominant power producer, has announced the arrival of a first shipment of LNG for the 120 MW Bogue power plant in Montego Bay. New Fortress Energy delivered the cargo via the ‘Golar Arctic’ carrier to the port of Kingston.

Tuesday, 09 August 2016 09:16 / Markets

US gas-burn tapers off as heat wave ends

Gas demand from the US power sector has been coming down from peak summer levels as the heat wave gradually abates, ending the need to tap gas storage. Analysts at Energy Aspects see gas burns for power over the two-week period ending August 12 averaging around 37.5 bcf/d, up by a modest 0.7 bcf/d year-on-year.

As natural gas plant liquids (NGPL) are sourced from gas production streams or in association with crude oil production, future NGPL production largely depends on the price differential between oil and natural gas. EIA analysts anticipate a significant rise in liquid fuel production beyond 2017.

Monday, 08 August 2016 09:37 / Markets

NTPC eager to end LNG supply deal

India’s biggest power producer, the state-run NTPC, is seeking to terminate a long-term LNG import contract as it perceives the fuel as “too expensive to be used in power generation. NTPC has notified GAIL India, which supplies gas through its affiliate Petronet LNG, stressing its inability to further execute the offtake contract as it cannot sell the electricity it generates from this gas.

Friday, 05 August 2016 08:18 / Markets

North America’s energy mix goes green

Renewables and nuclear energy are seen to reach a 45% share in North America’s power mix by 2025. These EIA projections fall short of the 50% clean energy goal that governments of Canada, Mexico and the US set in their latest trilateral agreement alongside targets to expand interconnectors by 5 GW.