The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) has underscored the need for a resilient gas infrastructure to deliver reliable and adequate gas for national economic development.
He informed that building a regasification plant in Ghana would ensure the stable supply of gas which is essential to the growth and expansion of the robust Ghanaian economy.
Dr. Kofi Kodua Sarpong said other sources of gas supply in Ghana had some challenges hence the plant to ensure a stable gas supply as well as act as the lender of the last resort for the sector.
The GNPC CEO said, "People say there would be too much gas on the market, I can tell you, over the last two years, gas off-take from our fields has increased significantly, which suggests that Ghana's measure of economic development was going up".
He observed that if Ghana had enough gas, the government would not import gas from Nigeria for power generation.
Dr. Sarpong said, "Others would say, if you have the Nigerian source, why are you bringing this one? We are bringing this because, having the LNG in the fuel mix is an advantage,... because the gas line from Nigeria can sometimes be blocked;
"Even in our own field, for the greater part of last year, the Tain field was virtually down; Jubilee would produce, but sometimes when they go up to a certain level, their plants trip, and even Sankofa fields have their own absurd conditions. So if you have LNG coming then you have stable supply because there would be another source of energy supply, etc." he explained.
Explaining the misconception surrounding the LNG, Dr. Sarpong said the gas was liquified because it was not easy transporting large volumes of gas in its raw form vessels. "So you put it into liquid, and when you do that, you are able to compress it and therefore possible to transport large volumes on marine vessels."
He indicated that the terminal at Tema would be used to regasify the LNG before it could be used to power plants.
The CEO said this was beneficial to government because crude fuel tended to be more expensive than gas. "Plants like Ameri and Asogli could be replaced with gas and the advantages are quite obvious—it's cheaper and cleaner," he asserted.
"Therefore it's environmentally more friendly than the liquid fuels we are aware of, and cheaper in the sense that it can be as much as 30% cheaper than ordinary fuel like crude, gas oil, etc. in the various types," the CEO added.
The Regasification Plant in Tema has three main components, which are the floating regasification unit where liquid is converted back to gas, the floating storage capacity unit, and a set of marine pipelines.
"So it is an interesting, sophisticated, and complex terminal built in Ghana, with the storage unit is about 600 million standard cubic feet,"Dr. Sarpong said.