Japan’s Jera to handle 35mn t/yr LNG until FY2035-36

  • : Electricity, Natural gas
  • 24/05/17

Japan's largest LNG importer Jera plans to maintain its LNG handling volumes at no less than 35mn t/yr until the April 2035-March 2036 fiscal year.

Rising renewable power supplies and the possible return of more nuclear reactors are likely to pressure LNG demand from Japan's power sector. Jera consumed 23mn t of LNG in 2023-24, down by 3pc on the year, although it handled 35mn t through its global operations during the same year.

But Jera needs to secure sufficient LNG supplies to adjust for imbalances in electricity supplies and ensure power security, through more flexible operations. It is also looking to further promote LNG along with renewable electricity in Asian countries, while helping to reduce their dependence on coal- and oil-fired power generators.

The 2035 target for LNG is part of Jera's three pillars of strategic focus, along with renewables as well as hydrogen and ammonia, which was announced on 16 May to spur decarbonisation towards its 2050 net zero emissions goal. The company plans to invest ¥5 trillion ($32bn) for these three areas over 2024-36.

Jera also aims to retire all supercritical or less efficient coal-fired units by 2030-31. This would help achieve the company's target of cutting CO2 emissions from its domestic business by at least 60pc against 2013-14 levels by 2035-36.


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24/06/24

Industria mexicana se enfrenta a un peso más débil

Industria mexicana se enfrenta a un peso más débil

Mexico City, 24 June (Argus) — La depreciación del peso mexicano después de las elecciones ha afectado al comercio e inversión en energía, con un dólar estadounidense más caro elevando el precio de las importaciones de combustible y gas natural. El peso perdió aproximadamente 11pc de su valor frente al dólar estadounidense a medida que los mercados reaccionaron a la abrumadora victoria electoral del partido en el poder Morena en las elecciones del 2 de junio. El tipo de cambio saltó de Ps16.65/$1 solo una semana antes de la votación a un pico de Ps18.99/$1 en los días siguientes. Desde entonces, la tasa se ha estabilizado en Ps18.30-Ps18.50/$1 en los últimos días. "El nuevo umbral para el tipo de cambio probablemente será de Ps18 por dólar", afirmó Gabriela Soni, directora de inversiones de UBS Asesores México. Añadió que, aunque el movimiento ha sido abrupto, "creemos que está justificado dada la aprobación esperada de las reformas constitucionales que tienen el potencial de erosionar el sistema de división de poderes y afectar a las decisiones de inversión en el país." Soni se refirió a la consolidación histórica del poder político asegurado por Morena y los partidos aliados en las elecciones que les entregó no solo la presidencia, como se esperaba, sino el control de 27 de las 32 gubernaturas estatales, y solo a unos pocos escaños en el senado de obtener mayorías calificadas en ambas cámaras del congreso. Con los resultados, el camino está muy claro para que el presidente Andrés Manuel López Obrador apruebe las controvertidas reformas judiciales durante su último mes en el poder en septiembre. Esto podría significar la eliminación de las reformas energéticas promercado aprobadas en 2014, la disolución de los reguladores del sector energético de México y el endurecimiento de la visión estatista de López Obrador de un sector energético dominado por la empresa estatal de petróleo y gas Pemex y la empresa de electricidad CFE. El tipo de cambio podría bajar aún más en los próximos meses si la economía se mantiene estable, dijo Pedro López, director adjunto de análisis económico de Banco BASE, un banco especializado mexicano que apoya a las empresas internacionales con operaciones en el país. Dicho esto, el tipo de cambio frente al dólar estadounidense "continuará estando sometido a presiones más elevadas estos meses hasta las elecciones presidenciales de EE. UU. en noviembre", dijo López. López dijo que el mercado debería tener una imagen más clara de México para finales de año, después de las elecciones estadounidenses y con mayor claridad después de la próxima sesión legislativa mexicana. Añadió que las presiones inflacionistas derivadas del aumento del tipo de cambio probablemente llevarían al banco central a mantener la tasa de interés de referencia en 11pc, manteniendo tasas de interés altas en México. Estas, a su vez, atraen a los inversionistas globales de nuevo al peso bajo la dinámica actual de tasas, suponiendo que no haya perturbaciones adicionales. Balance de energía Dado que México es un importador neto de energía desde 2015, "una depreciación del peso mexicano tiende a empeorar el balance del petróleo", afirmó Soni. "Sin embargo, México es un exportador neto en sectores no energéticos, especialmente en la fabricación, y la balanza comercial se beneficiaría en estos sectores." Y aunque el tipo de cambio puede ayudar a México a ganar más dinero por las exportaciones de petróleo, "tenemos que recordar que son cada vez menos", dijo Víctor Herrera, jefe de estudios económicos del Instituto Mexicano de Ejecutivos Financieros (IMEF). Pemex está redirigiendo el petróleo hacia sus refinerías, bajo el mandato del presidente para aumentar la producción nacional de combustible. Como resultado, las exportaciones de petróleo crudo mexicano cayeron 31pc año con año en abril a 618,000 b/d. A pesar de los esfuerzos, los productos refinados importados de EE. UU. siguen representando aproximadamente 72pc de su consumo nacional de gasolina, diésel, gas natural y turbosina, según los datos de la secretaria de energía. Se necesitará tiempo para saber qué beneficios, si los hubiera, aportan las ventas de petroleo de Pemex al extranjero, que se traducen en pesos adicionales, afirmó Herrera. Mientras tanto, añadió: "pagaremos dólares más caros para importar gasolina." Por James Young Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

MVP start-up shows permitting troubles in US


24/06/24
24/06/24

MVP start-up shows permitting troubles in US

Washington, 24 June (Argus) — The start-up of the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) after a delay of over five years highlights the difficulty the US gas industry faces in building greenfield pipelines under current permitting rules — which are unlikely to change any time soon. The 500km natural gas pipeline began commercial operations on 14 June, at a $7.85bn price tag that was more than double the cost expected when the project was first proposed in 2015. The 2bn ft³/d (20bn m³/yr) pipeline will move shale gas from a mountainous region in West Virginia to demand centres in Virginia, with the possibility for future expansions. MVP is expected to run at just 35-40pc of its nameplate capacity until downstream bottlenecks are removed, according to analyst groups RBN Energy and East Daley Analytics. The pipeline offers the promise of eventually easing price pressure in markets in southeastern US and increasing Appalachian gas output that would otherwise remain constrained. The pipeline — soon to change ownership once US independent EQT closes its $5.5bn all-stock acquisition of operator Equitrans Midstream — is the sole survivor of a round of eastern US pipeline cancellations in 2020-21 caused by permitting issues. MVP was also delayed by permitting lawsuits that forced construction crews to repeatedly halt work, adding billions of dollars to project costs as inflation increased the price of both labour and materials. Construction on the project resumed last year only after extraordinary intervention from the US Congress, which approved all remaining pipeline permits as part of an unrelated law that raised the limit on federal debt. The permitting obstacles for pipelines in the eastern US show no signs of fading, despite smaller changes to speed permitting negotiated through legislation last year. Retiring US senator Joe Manchin, a Democrat from West Virginia, is circulating a comprehensive permitting package he says would fast-track the approval process for pipelines and renewable energy projects. Gas groups say any meaningful permitting bill will have to revise the judicial process and limit the ability of states such as New York to continue using water permits to veto new pipelines. In exchange, renewable energy projects could follow a faster permitting schedule for electricity transmission. But that is a deal many progressive Democrats are reluctant to take, particularly as they face the prospect that former president Donald Trump will win in US presidential elections in November. Far-right Republicans are hesitant to give President Joe Biden a permitting win when they believe they can get a better deal if Trump is elected. But without legislative changes industry officials expect permitting delays to continue whoever is in the White House. "This is not a left or right thing," EQT chief executive Toby Rice says. Sticky red tape Trump's campaign says if he is elected he will speed up approval of gas pipelines serving the Appalachian basin by removing "all red tape". But his regulatory changes when in office failed to make a material difference in permitting timelines, and he repeatedly failed to broker a legislative deal to hasten permitting. Gas industry officials say they want to expedite permitting regardless of the election results, and believe momentum could occur when voters start feeling the effects of delays. "The motivation for pipeline reform I think will increase when the American consumers believe that their energy needs are impacted by the lack of infrastructure," Iowa-based Berkshire Hathaway Energy's gas transmission president, Paul Ruppert, says. The difficulty and time required to permit large greenfield pipelines in the eastern US has led developers to focus on adding capacity to existing pipelines or pursuing shorter expansions instead. By Chris Knight Mountain Valley and its peers Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Western Australia’s Strike plans gas-fired power plant


24/06/24
24/06/24

Western Australia’s Strike plans gas-fired power plant

Sydney, 24 June (Argus) — Australian independent Strike Energy plans to build and operate an 85MW peaking gas-fired power plant that could come on line by October 2026 near its South Erregulla operations in Western Australia (WA). Strike applied to the Australia Energy Market Operator (Aemo) for capacity credits and network access to develop the power plant. It is targeting a final investment decision in November this year subject to Aemo's decision. Gas supplies of around 1.3 PJ/yr (34.7mn m³/yr) would come from Strike's South Erregulla reserves . The power plant would be on land owned by Strike 280km north of Perth and around 15km of existing power transmission lines within the South West Interconnected System, the electricity network that covers Perth and the southwest region of WA. The WA system will need around 3.9GW of new flexible gas-fired power capacity by 2042 to firm increasing renewable generation as the state exits coal-fired power generation, the state government said last year. It plans to close the two remaining state-owned coal-fired power plants by 2030 , while the private-sector Bluewaters coal-fired power plant is expected to retire by 2030-31, according to Aemo. Aemo has identified a supply shortfall of 391MW emerging in 2027-28 because of a progressive coal-fired power phase-out and increasing electricity demand. The shortfall could reach as high as 2.88GW by 2033-34, highlighting the need for continued capacity investment particularly from 2027 onwards, Aemo said in its latest electricity statement of opportunities for WA's Wholesale Electricity Market, which is not connected to east Australia's National Electricity Market. Strike estimates total annual revenues of A$40mn-50mn ($26.6mn-33.2mn) for the gas-fired peaking plant over the first five years of operation, of which almost 40pc would come from payments under WA's capacity credit scheme. The plant would operate for over 25 years, with investment costs currently estimated between A$120mn-160mn. By Juan Weik Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Western Australia’s Wheatstone LNG fully back on line


24/06/24
24/06/24

Western Australia’s Wheatstone LNG fully back on line

Singapore, 24 June (Argus) — Operator Chevron fully resumed output at the 8.9mn t/yr Wheatstone LNG in Western Australia (WA) over the weekend, after restarting its two production trains and domestic gas plant. This is days ahead of an initially targeted supply restart by 27 June . Operations at an offshore platform were interrupted from 10 June, disrupting supplies to Wheatstone's LNG production and domestic gas facilities located near WA's Onslow in the Pilbara region. The WA Gas Bulletin Board's medium-term capacity outlook operated by the Australian Energy Market Operator earlier showed Wheatstone's domestic plant off line until 26 June, meaning supplies could return the following day. But restarts may have been attempted from as early as 14 June, said offtakers contacted by Chevron. While the shutdown of Wheatstone initially raised concerns about potential supply disruptions, the resulting spike in spot prices were short-lived. The front half-month of the ANEA, the Argus assessment for spot LNG deliveries to northeast Asia, was last assessed at $12.44/mn Btu on 21 June, 73¢/mn Btu lower than when prices peaked on 14 June. But this still 66¢/mn Btu higher than on 10 June before the disruption and subsequent repairs. It is unclear how many LNG cargoes have been lost as a result of the incident, with the disruption only resulting in a July term cargo being deferred by a few weeks, a Wheatstone offtaker said. No known term cargo cancellations have emerged. By Rou Urn Lee Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Japan's Hokuriku starts biomass co-firing test runs


24/06/21
24/06/21

Japan's Hokuriku starts biomass co-firing test runs

Tokyo, 21 June (Argus) — Japan's utility Hokuriku Electric Power started coal and wood pellet co-firing test runs in April, the company said today. Hokuriku has been conducting co-firing test runs using coal and imported wood pellets at the 700MW Tsuruga No.2 unit in Fukui prefecture since April, with the 700MW Nanao-Ohta No.2 unit in Ishikawa prefecture to follow suit. The company also plans to increase biomass co-combustion rates at these two major coal-fired power plants to 15pc by the April 2030-March 2031 fiscal year, which means a total of 210MW of capacity and 1.5mn MWh/yr of output based on biomass-fired generation. Hokuriku expects its increased biomass co-firing rates to reduce CO2 emissions by 1mn t/yr compared with emissions from coal-firing for the same output, although it did not disclose the volume of wood pellets that will be burned. The company has been co-firing with coal and domestically-produced wood chips at Tsuruga since 2007 and at Nanao-Ohta since 2010, but its total biomass ratio was under 1pc. By Takeshi Maeda Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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