We have surplus gas, say TPDC

Speaking at a news conference in Dar es Salaam, TPDC Managing Director Dr James Mataragio said gas production was currently above the required rate per day. According to him, there is a surplus of 94 million standard cubic feet (mmscfd) produced daily, after completion of the work on the laying of the gas pipeline.
The pipeline begins its route from Madimba village in Mtwara Rural District and Songo Songo in Kilwa District to Dar es Salaam. Dr Mataragio said after putting up turbines and a gas pipeline in Madimba and Songosongo, Tanzania is currently able to produce enough gas per day, with the figure likely to increase as need arises.
According to him, Songo Songo has the capacity to produce 140mmscfd per day, with the new pipeline planned to have the capacity to transport 784 cubic feet of gas per day, which are likely to increase up to 1002 cubic feet per day.
The Madimba turbines have the capacity to produce 210mmcfd of gas per day, according to the TPDC boss, which translates into 350mmcfd per day. On improvements in supply since the use of natural gas started, electricity production has reached 700mw, equivalent to 70 per cent of the total electricity in the national grid.
Dr Mataragio described the achievement as a major developmental revolution, given that the same amount of electricity has for many years been produced through hydropower. Last week, Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) Managing Director Mr Felchesmi Mramba said from September 17 this year when the government started using natural gas from Mtwara, electricity production has increased from 260mw to 540mw.
This, according to him, is an increase of 300mw, which has contributed to stabilising electricity distribution in the country, adding that another 130mw is expected from natural gas sources between now and January 2016 that will take the total to 700mw going into the national grid.
The country’s current demand for electricity is 720mw per day The low cost gas power generation would be extended to industrial and other users, raising Tanzania’s competitiveness and growth prospects.
Dr Mataragio took a swipe at some people who have been insisting that the gas pipeline was like a white elephant -- and that it would not benefit Tanzanians. “If today we decide to scrap the gas pipeline, the country will sink into total darkness,’’ he noted.
At the same time, the national oil company is currently undertaking the grand fertiliser project which will be accomplished after 40 months.
The project is being undertaken with Ferostaal Industrial Projects GmbH of Germany and other associates from Pakistan and Denmark, according to TPDC Managing Director.
“We have already signed a Joint Venture Agreement in the project which expects to spend 2 billion US dollars -- and the project expects to produce 3,850 tonnes of fertiliser per day,’’ he said.
TPDC is also undertaking other projects for supplying natural gas in Mtwara, Lindi and Dr es Salaam regions. They aim at supplying gas for domestic consumption and vehicles.
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