Nigeria: a flaring giant [NGW Magazine]
In order to fully harness the NGFCP, Nigeria needs more power plants to be built as well as more LNG trains, but the realities on the ground show that there is no prospect of either happening. The Train-7 project of the NLNG is to take FID in Q4 2019, meaning it may not be until 2023 that it will be able to to turn flared gas into profits.
On June 17, the NGFCP began its review of the statements of qualification for companies interested in commercialising Nigeria's flared gas. The deputy manager for gas production and flare monitoring at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Olawole Ogunsola, has said the programme will meet its target of assigning flare sites by end-2019.
Top officials told journalists in Lagos that the programme which was initiated by the Buhari administration has moved on to the review of statements of qualification, which came from some 250 companies.
Those who make it will proceed to the request for proposals phase, where the DPR, through the National Data Repository, will open the data room and they can have access to each of the flare points – they have all been logged – and then make a firm proposal on which flare points they are interested in taking the gas from.
The chairman of the ministerial steering committee for the NGFCP, Rabiu Suleiman, said the government will end gas flaring by 2020, which is just a few months away. According to the Petroleum Act, paragraph 35B, First Schedule, the government has the right to take gas produced in association with crude oil and not taken by the operators or used.
"The government is doing this via third-party companies in order to promote investment and get people who are qualified technically, who have the financial capability and the experience to work in the Niger Delta (Nigeria's South-South region, the foremost Oil and Gas producing area)and help us harness this flare gas and take it to the market," Suleiman stated.
Previous efforts to end flaring have been unsuccessful, and penalties issued to companies have not stopped the activity. Reports indicate that oil companies in Nigeria produce over 4bn ft³/day of which about 700mn ft³/day are flared.