Here is what’s going on in the natural gas industry around the world:
Following strong opposition from islanders and environmentalists, the government of Puerto Rico has formally withdrawn plans to build a natural gas pipeline after investing more than $50 million in the project.
The decision comes four months after a government-appointed committee rejected plans for the pipeline that would have bisected the island, and offered three alternatives.
The 92-mile (148-kilometer) pipeline would have saved $1 billion a year and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 64 percent.
The pipeline would have originated in southern Puerto Rico and traversed 235 rivers and wetlands, bisecting the island as it veered east toward the capital of San Juan. Critics said it would have damaged fragile ecosystems and archaeological sites and exposed people to deadly explosions.
Government officials said they will consider other natural gas alternatives and expect to choose a new project by mid-2013.
India fears that natural gas production could become commercially unviable at Reliance Industries Ltd.’s oil and gas fields in Krishna-Godavari basin if output continues to decline.
Falling gas output at D6, considered India’s richest gas find so far, has dragged down the country’s overall gas production, forcing it to import costlier liquefied natural gas.
Reliance Industries Ltd. , India’s largest listed company by market value, has slashed recoverable gas reserve estimates for two key producing fields in an eastern offshore block by 70 percent, citing production performance and a decline in pressure in the fields.
Output of natural gas is likely to total 43 billion cubic meters, a decline of around 9.5 percent from 47.56 billion cubic meters last year.
More Indian firms are expressing interest in bidding for oil and gas blocks in Mozambique. Those same firms are also interested in setting up a gas-based fertilizer plant there.
Some firms are expected to bid for more than 2-3 blocks in an auction to be held in the first quarter of 2013.
Some of the blocks contain as much as 60 trillion cubic feet of gas reserves.
Saudi Arabia intends to reduce domestic oil consumption by 2014, replacing it with natural gas.
Saudi Aramco said the oil output decline would coincide with increased gas production for power generation and water desalination plants. The plan came amid appeals to reduce domestic oil consumption.
Aramco recently reported a discovery of commercial quantities of gas in the Red Sea. So far more than 100 wells have been drilled.
Poland’s government has proposed a new tax structure for its oil and gas sector. It is now based on the value of a company’s production volumes and its profits—the total tax burden reaching 40 percent of gross profits.
Many companies that slowed down drilling because of the uncertainty of future tax burdens, have waited for the announcement of the new tax structure.
Both conventional and unconventional oil and gas production will be taxed, the government said in a news release Tuesday about the proposed framework. Natural gas and crude oil volumes will be taxed at 5 percent and 10 percent of the value of production volumes, respectively, from 2015.