Nigeria's total annual crude oil production is accompanied by associated gas of about 40 bcm per annum, of which 80% is flared. With changes in government gas policies and introduction of various incentives to promote gas utilisation, a number of domestic and export gas projects are at different stages of development in the country.
The largest and the most successful of these gas project investments has so far been that of Nigeria LNG. The six-train plant can process associated gas in quantities up to 40% of its feedstock.
GAS RESERVES IN NIGERIA
Nigeria is blessed with massive reserves of associated and non-associated gas, estimated in excess of 160 trillion cubic feet. It is ranked amongst the 10th largest in terms of proven natural gas reserves in the world, and its natural gas reserves / production is estimated at 109 years.
Geologists insist that there is a lot more gas still to be found, if companies deliberately explore for gas, as opposed to finding it by chance whilst in search of oil.
Nigeria is one of the biggest gas flarers, in spite of the associated environmental hazards of gas flaring. The government is, however, working to achieve a target of zero flares in the near future.
It is expected that all the NLNG trains (including the proposed Train 7) running at full capacity will play a significant part to help put out these flares. Other proposed LNG projects include Olokola LNG and Brass LNG among others. The Nigerian Gas Company currently caters for Independent Power Producers, and local industries in Lagos and other parts of the country. The proposed West African Gas Pipeline Project will make gas available to other West African countries for domestic and industrial uses.
ROLE OF NLNG
The NLNG plant site was designed to provide scope for future expansion. The Plant currently utilises both non-associated gas and oil-associated gas as (which was traditionally wasted through flaring). The use of associated gas will provide environmental improvements by reducing flaring which contributes to global warming. Pervasive gas flaring is one of the key factors that has worsened the environment of the Niger Delta, attracting concern from the international community.