by Lenie Lectura, 22 April 2015
THE country’s natural-gas output as of April this year amounted to 20,233 million standard cubic feet (MMcf), with most of it used to boost the country’s power generation.
In a posting on its web site, the Department of Energy (DOE) said 19,321 MMcf of the country’s gas production went to power-generation use, while the industrial sector took up 344 cubic feet. The figures are from January to April this year.
The Malampaya natural-gas facility supplies gas to three power plants with a total capacity of 2,700 megawatts (MW), providing about half of Luzon’s power needs. These power plants are the 1,000-MW Santa Rita, 500-MW San Lorenzo, and 1,200-MW Ilijan.
In the same data, the DOE said gas output in 2014 reached 130,351 MMcf, up from 116,973 MMcf a year earlier.
The current Philippine gas industry- development initiative is anchored on the Camago-Malampaya deposit, which is estimated to support the operation of 3,000 MW of gas-fired power plants for over 20 years with its 2.5-trillion cubic feet (Tcf) to 3.2 Tcf maximum recoverable reserves.
Recently, the Malampaya facility went on a 30-day maintenance shutdown to give way for the platform installation aimed at maintaining the fuel supply to the three power plants.
The DOE had said gas-fired power plants require additional gas discoveries or importation of liquefied petroleum gas (LNG). Conversion of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant to a 1,500-MW gas-fired plant has been offered on the expectation of more recoverable gas reserves to be delineated shortly.
Assurance of gas supply for the Philippines, including those for non-power uses, are, however optimistically provided by the LNG option and the Trans-Asean Gas Pipeline Project.
The plan for a Trans-Asean gas pipeline is viewed by the Philippine government as an assurance that the gas infrastructure being planned will not run short of natural gas supply over the long-term.
The scheduled phasing of the Trans-Asean pipeline development, as proposed in the recently concluded feasibility study by the Asean Energy Management and Training Center (AEEMTRC) and the European Union, is considered to be in consonance with the Philippine gas industry development plan.