South Africa’s mining and manufacturing industry has been hit repeatedly by sharp increases in electricity tariffs. With President Zuma’s plans for new nuclear thwarted, South Africa’s future energy mix is seen shift towards renewables and flexible gas generation. An LNG-to-Power IPP Programme envisages some 1GW of new gas power capacity to be constructed at South Africa's Coega port, with another 2GW to be built at Richards Bay.
Engie of France and AES have entered into a joint venture to market and sell LNG to third parties in Central America. The JV will utilize the Costa Norte LNG regasification terminal, currently under construction with a capacity of 1.5 million tons per annum (mtpa). Approximately 25% of the Costa Norte LNG regas capacity will supply fuel to a 380MW combined-cycle gas power plant in the city of Colón, Panama.
With new electric devices being developed at a rapid rate, electricity will make up about 25% of final energy consumption by 2040, according to IEA estimates. Brushing climate concerns aside, Richard Zhang, technology executive at GE’s Power Conversion says: “Future electrical machines will generate power with higher density, higher efficiency and allow for a higher degree of integration.”
Shell, Total and others are advancing small-scale LNG-to-power projects across Southeast Asia. An ultra-shallow draft LNG carrier by Philippines-based Atlantic, Gulf & Pacific Co. (AG&P) will be a key driver for executing such projects.
LNG-to-energy solutions, notably for distributed power, have made Wärtsilä one of the biggest supplier of gas- and liquid fuel-fired power stations in the 5–600 MW range. Such baseload and/or grid stability plants are used predominately as ‘wind chasers’ and ‘sunset balancers’, compensating for intermittent supply of renewable energy – soon also on the island of Aruba.
With global energy demand forecast to grow by 30 percent through to 2030, driven by industry and rising prosperity in emerging markets like ASEAN, Thailand’s energy secretary Areepong Bhoocha-Oom seeks to turn the country into a regional energy hub. For the Thai power sector that means liberalising integrated utilities and transforming the fuel mix toward clean gas and renewables.
Steep rise in the deployment and use of new Floating Regasification and Storage Units (FSRUs) – notably in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa – will substantially increase the supply of natural gas for decentralised power generation projects worldwide. From 2019 onwards, Energy Aspects anticipates the deployment of three to four new FSRUs per year, with a combined LNG import capacity of some 12-15mtpa, as “the maximum level of uptake.”
Global traded LNG volumes rose 5% last year to reach 258 million tonnes, according to a new report from the International Gas Union (IGU).
The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) says growing LNG trade could support the development of an Asian LNG benchmark.
The rise in oil prices from last summer onwards is now filtering through to Russian contract gas prices, while at the same time LNG prices and European benchmarks are falling – making Russian gas less competitive and increasing the likelihood of large volumes of LNG moving to Europe. The trend comes after a period of record Russian gas imports to Europe, coinciding with low gas prices linked to crude’s earlier weakness in 2015 and the first half of 2016.