GUYANA: OIL: Piping gas to shore brings major benefits; find the right investment balance – analyst

The Guyana government is forging ahead with its plan to land a gas pipeline onshore to produce cheaper, cleaner energy and create new economic opportunities for the country of just over 750,000 people.

While some have criticized this move, suggesting it would be too costly, one analyst is pointing out that the potential benefits far outweigh any challenges that may be encountered along the way.

“I do think that the gas-to shore project is something that would be beneficial for Guyana,” Americas Market Intelligence (AMI) Analyst, Arthur Deakin stated on a radio programme this week. This project, he said, would slash the cost of electricity, which would then have spin-off effects.


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  • brandli62  On 01/18/2021 at 12:24 pm

    I largely agree with the analysis of Arthur Dunkin regarding the gas-to-shore project. The project needs definitely to be further pursued given the simple fact that up to 20% of Guyana’s offshore hydrocarbon deposits are in the form of natural gas. It would be a pity just to inject the gas back into the rock and flaring is definitely not an viable option in the 21st century and in light of global warming.

    A few facts need however to be considered. First, Guyana has currently a population below 800’000, which may grow up to a million in the next two decades given the new economic opportunities that increasing oil revenues will offer. Replacing diesel with natural gas to generate electricity makes sense as this will significant reduce the CO2 output per MW electricity produced. Furthermore, Guyana would no longer need to import expensive diesel fuel for power production purposes. In general, Guyana should rely primarily on renewable energy sources, primarily solar, wind and water, for electricity production. To my know, this is the current policy of the Ali administration. One or two state-of-the-art gas power stations will however be necessary should shortages of renewable energy occur either during the daily cycle (as with solar) or due to seasonal variation (wind, water). It will be important to commission a careful assessment of the natural gas needs for electricity production purposes.

    Even without such an assessment in place as of today, it will be evident that the natural gas reserves will be far beyond Guyana’s needs. What can be done with the excess gas?

    The most sensible approach would be to convert it to liquid gas (LNG), which can be stored and exported. The CARICOM nations could become prime customers of Guyanese LNG by converting their diesel-power plants to LNG ones. Again, this, in combination with solar and wind energy, will help to effectively reduce the carbon footprint of the Caribbean island nations. Guyanese LNG might also become an important energy source for Central or South American nations in the future.

    Finally, LNG is also an important resource for the petrochemical industry. For example, it is a key source of fertilizers in the form of ammonia and urea. Guyana could establish a fertilizer production plant, which could serve the needs of the local agricultural industry as well as across CARICOM. In addition, LNG can be used to produce hydrogen, which is becoming more and more in demand as an alternative power source for trucks and long distance car travel.

    Overall, I firmly believe that Guyana’s natura gas should be used, in a sensible manner. Currently, the negative and critical voice appear to have the upper hand but we should consider the positive aspects of this precious resource.

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