Gas Delivery Points Expanding

Gas Delivery Points ExpandingGas Delivery Points Expanding

The oil ministry aims to launch the 10th national gas pipeline by early December.  It will have three compressor stations to use the surplus gas in Asaluyeh in Bushehr Province for domestic consumption, Deputy Oil Minister Hamid Reza Araghi said, ILNA reported Saturday.

"With the 10th national pipeline coming on stream, gas supply to the national grid will increase by 50 million cubic meters (mcm)," Araghi said, adding that some pipelines were delayed in the past few years due to technical and financial constraints.

The ministry has plans to launch the 9th national pipeline and compressor stations of the 8th pipeline over the next two years. Gas delivery from Asaluyeh in the south to the Bazargan border in north Iran is among the ministry's top priorities. Bazargan is the major ground border between Iran and Turkey.

Additionally, gas production is due to increase by 120 million cubic meters (mcm) by the end of the present Iranian calendar year (March 2015), according to Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said.

The minister urged distribution companies to sustain their gas supplies during the winter and said, "Power plants have demanded 12 billion liters of diesel since the beginning of the year (March 2014), which was not possible. However, we intend to expand production and increase delivery to power plants."

To help curb air pollution, power stations and industries have been instructed to use gas instead of mazut and diesel during the winter. Power plants usually consume less gas and more mazut and diesel during wintertime also allowing for household consumption. However, this winter a larger volume of gas will be supplied to industries and power stations.

The ministry aims to increase the use of compressed natural gas (CNG) by expanding delivery to gas stations and remote areas. "Around 19mcm of CNG has already been replaced with gasoline," Zanganeh said without elaboration.

Gas production capacity has increased by 100mcm compared to a year ago, Zanganeh said, noting that with the increase in gas output over the next three years, mazut and diesel to industries and small towns will be replaced by gas.

Close to 600mcm of gas was delivered to the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) on a daily basis in the past eight months. Additionally, the National Iranian Oil Products Distribution Company (NIOPDC) is to become the largest distributor of liquid fuels for petroleum and diesel-powered cars by the next three years.

The minister lamented the lack of a major fuel distributor in the country. "We should not be dealing with 5,000 suppliers, and instead, must reduce the number to less than a hundred by establishing unions and cooperatives."

The Economic Council of parliament is close to approving $4 billion budget to expand gas delivery to 10 million residents in small towns and villages (Approximately 2.5 million households) based on Note 2(G) of the national budget law for the present year.

The note establishes the investment framework for the oil ministry, allowing it to invest up to $100 billion in oil and gas projects.