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PNCR prefers shipping rather than piping of natural gas

Last Updated on Tuesday, 22 February 2022, 14:25 by Denis Chabrol

The People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) on Tuesday argued against government building a more than US$1 billion natural gas pipeline, and instead suggested that the gas be shipped to shore or other markets.

PNCR Central Executive Member, Retired Rear Admiral Gary Best declined to provide details to justify his party’s preference for shipping, instead saying that would be done before a sitting of the bipartisan parliamentary Natural Resources Committee. With no idea of when government would summon a meeting of that Committee,  there is no idea when the PNCR will publicise its reasons for preferring shipping rather than piping of the gas.

“In particular, the use of ISO containers to ferry liquefied natural gas to shore is a much less expensive and more environmentally friendly transportation method. We are advised that LNG ISO tank containers  are seen in the industry as the easiest and most flexible means of conveyance to transport gases Apart from the massive cost savings relative to gas pipelines, the LNG plant container option would allow the country to export excess gas to several overseas markets,”  he said.

Apart from Guyana’s gas-to-shore electricity facility, Suriname, Guyana and Brazil are forging ahead with an Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)-studied Arco Norte project to build pipeline to supply gas to massive Brazilian electricity generation facility.

But Mr. Best said the shipment of gas is a better and cheaper option to export natural gas.

The PNCR instead called on the People’s Progressive Party Civic-led Irfaan Ali administration to ” immediately consult, discuss and relook at the pipeline proposal” , in keeping with the inclusion and consultation as enshrined  in Article 13 of Guyana’s constitution. “The potential large cost savings can be used to lift the living standards of the many poor and struggling families in our mix. It is not too late for the government and listen, the nation is much better,” he said.

Pressed for details that led the PNCR to choose shipping of the gas rather than piping, the PNCR Central Executive member said “I don’t think it is important to provide technical details.” “What I can say to you that we do have our experts and be willing to sit and discuss those details with the government,” he said.

The PNCR Central Executive member publicly called on the PNCR to call a meeting of the parliamentary sectoral committee on natural resources where members of the public or experts could be summoned to give evidence.

Government’s Project Leader for the gas-to-shore project, Winston Brassington last week said ExxonMobil would be barely supplying 50 million cubic feet of natural gas for the electricity generation plant and the production of natural gas liquids. He, however, said there would be insufficient natural gas to produce by products such as ammonia and urea.

ExxonMobil would be financing the gas pipeline out of cost oil and government would be paying for the natural gas-powered electricity plant to be built at Wales, West Bank Demerara.

Government has repeatedly touted the gas-to-shore electricity plant and the Amaila Falls Hydropower project as its major pillars to transition from dirty fossil fuels to the cleaner natural gas as well provide much cheaper electricity for domestic, commercial and industrial consumption.