Authorities in Guyana have begun looking at alternate uses for the excess gas from the US$900 million gas-to-energy project set to come on stream by 2024.
While energy generation from the landmark project is the government’s primary focus, Natural Resources Minister Vickram Bharrat has explained that there is a significant amount of natural gas in the Liza field that can be converted to other uses.
The US$900million project will utilise associated natural gas from ExxonMobil’s Liza field with the pipeline passing through Crane and other communities before being landed at Wales on the West Bank of Demerara where the power generation facility will be constructed.
As per the government’s current plan with ExxonMobil, 50 million cubic (mcf) of gas is set to be transported daily though the pipeline which will have the potential to carry 120 million cubic feet. That 50 mcf is what is needed to generate 250 megawatts of power.
“The project would focus primarily on energy generation because that is our biggest problem in Guyana. We need cheaper, more reliable, and cleaner energy and this project would solve that problem,” he said. “However, based on what we are guaranteed now from ExxonMobil in terms of the amount of gas coming in, there will be a few million [mcf] that would remain, so we would have to find ways in which we would utilise it…we may be in some small petrochemical industry, maybe fertiliser, we have not decided,” he explained.
With the gas-to-energy project, the government aims for the country to benefit from power generation at a rate of around three U.S. cents per kilowatt-hour.
That price is expected to drop even further once the pipeline is repaid in four years’ time and is projected to save Guyana US$150 million in heavy fuel oil costs annually