ExxonMobil’s subsidiary, Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL) recently submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the project summary for the gas-to-energy project which government has said could cost around US$900 million in total.
The document notes that the project will last for at least 25 years and is generally anticipated to have a positive effect on the economy of Guyana as a result of more affordable and reliable electricity, as well as increased local employment and procurement opportunities.
ExxonMobil said the project includes the construction and operation of a pipeline from the Liza Phase 1 and Liza Phase 2 Floating, Production, Storage, and Offloading (FPSO) vessels to an onshore natural gas liquids (NGL) and natural gas processing plant (NGL Plant). The oil major explained that the pipeline will transport up to approximately 50 million standard cubic feet per day (MSCFD) of dry gas to the NGL Plant which will drop the pressure of the gas, dehydrate it, separate out propane, butane and pentanes+, and treat the gas to the specification to be received by a planned power plant. It said the power plant will be owned and operated by the Government of Guyana which will also consider alternative options on ownership.
It was further noted that a comprehensive site evaluation process was conducted to determine a location most suitable for the proposed NGL Plant site and 20 sites were considered based on a number of criteria, including topography/elevation, soil conditions, biodiversity, socioeconomic factors, site access, and pipeline routing. Of the sites assessed, Exxon said it was determined that the Wales location is the most favorable candidate for the site based on constructability, environmental, socioeconomic, and biodiversity perspectives. The oil giant said the site lies approximately 23 km upriver on the west bank of the Demerara River on abandoned sugarcane fields.
Further to this, Exxon said an additional area of approximately 100 acres (40 Ha) adjacent to the site may be used by its construction contractor for support of the Project during construction. OilNOW understands that the additional support area would only be used during the construction phase of the project and any temporary structures or equipment would be removed from this area upon completion of the construction phase.
As for the onshore pipeline segment, Exxon said the nominal temporary workspace area required during construction will be approximately 23 meters wide, resulting in a temporary construction footprint between approximately 123 – 154 acres. It said too that additional temporary workspaces may be required at civil features such as larger canals and roads to facilitate their crossings, and would measure approximately 50 x 100 meters.
The project document also notes that detailed estimates of workforce requirements have not yet been developed. Nevertheless, preliminary workforce estimates for the construction workforce will be on the order of 600 persons or less, with accommodation needs to be served by existing lodging in the greater Georgetown area.
The highly anticipated project is expected to pave the way for a massive industrial park to be housed at Wales which Vice President, Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo had previously stated will have similar characteristics to Trinidad and Tobago’s revered multi-purpose Point Lisas Industrial Estate which hosts numerous ammonia and methanol plants. The only difference Dr. Jagdeo said is that Guyana’s will be “a little bit more eco-friendly.”
The Wales Industrial Park is expected to stretch across just a little over 10,000 acres of land while the pipeline that will feed it with 50 million cubic feet of gas per day will terminate at Crane.
The project is expected to come on stream by 2024.