Western Cape government to drive gas agenda

8th November 2019 By: Marleny Arnoldi - Creamer Media Online Writer

The Western Cape government has completed a comprehensive study to assess the feasibility of importing liquefied natural gas (LNG) through Saldanha Bay and developing gas storage, transmission and distribution infrastructure along the West Coast corridor.

The study confirms that the Western Cape Integrated LNG Importation and Gas-to-Power project should be feasible based on projected market demand for LNG, the performance of underlying assets of the project and its overall socioeconomic benefit to the province.

The feasibility study was funded by the US Trade and Development Agency.

The national government programme to import LNG and build gas-to-power plants has stalled for the last four years, owing to a lack of movement on broader national energy policy.

The recently released Integrated Resource Plan 2019 supports the development of gas infrastructure and new gas-to-power capacity, as well as conversion of existing gas to power, going so far as to describe unconstrained gas as a “no regret” option.

However, there has been little urgency from national government to begin implementation.

The Western Cape provincial government has been actively promoting the importation of LNG for several years and will, therefore, request Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe to initiate the Gas Independent Power Producer Programme as a matter of urgency.