‘More gas should be freed for power generation’
With only 18 per cent of total gas produced utilised locally, the Federal Government has advocated increase in volume made available for power generation and utilisation in industrial firms, especially as almost half of the domestic volume (7 per cent) is flared daily.
According to the Chief Operating Officer, Upstream, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Bello Rabiu, while speaking on Upstream Opportunities at the Nigeria Oil and Gas Forum at the weekend, more gas need to be sent to the domestic market for power generation to address constraints in the sector.
He explained that out of the daily 8.6bscfd of gas produced, only 18 per cent is sent for domestic consumption while 43 per cent is exported as Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) and 32 per cent is re-injected for enhanced oil recovery and other operational uses.
He noted that despite the huge reserves of the commodity in the country, very little is made available for energy generation.
Last month, gas supply needed to boost generation was 22,505 million standard cubic feet (mmscf) as against 21,521 mmscf recorded in February which had lesser days.
Data from the Office of Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, indicated that last month, Nigeria’s privatised power sector lost a total of N49.35 billion revenue due to constraints which included shortage of gas; grid unreliability and distribution limitations.
On his part, High Commissioner, Trinidad and Tobago, Amb William Wallace identified infrastructure challenge as the major hindrance to gas utilisation for domestic consumption.
He tasked operators to explore opportunities availed through the gap to invest in the sector.
The data obtained by The Guardian from the Advisory Power Team in Osinbajo’s office, showed that for this period, the average volume of electricity generated and distributed daily to Nigerian homes and offices was 4172 megawatts (MW) per day, while an average of 3317MW was constrained from getting to consumers by these limitations.
The industry data equally explained that the total volume of gas supplied by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to gas power generation plants in the country for the period has continued to drop.
According to the data, Nigeria’s power sector attained a peak generation of about 5,243MW during the period.
Besides, the Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baruthat stated that in order to bridge the medium term domestic gas supply deficit by 2020, seven Critical Gas Development Projects (7CGDPs) had also been identified, saying that the desired outcome of this initiative would boost domestic gas supply from about 1.5bscf/d to 5bscf/d with a corresponding 500 per cent increase in power generation to buoy capacity utilization of industries.
The NNPC GMD remarked that the 7CGDPs were at different stages of development with Assa North-Ohaji South (ANOH) project ahead of others.
He stated that the Front End Engineering Design (FEED) for facilities and pipelines for ANOH had been completed with the Final Investment Decision (FID) for the project taken in December 2018.
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