Demand for natural gas to rise 60pc: Minister

 03 Dec 2012 - 6:04


H E Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada, Minister of Energy and Industry, addressing the plenary session at the World Climate Summit at Ritz-Carlton yesterday.

DOHA: With the demand of natural gas is projected to rise in the long term, the development of Natural Gas and LNG capacities is critical for balancing the world energy equation, Minister of Energy and Industry H E Dr Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada has said .

Addressing the plenary session of World Climate Summit here yesterday, Dr Sada said demand for natural gas will rise by more than 60 percent from 2010 through 2040, overtaking coal for the number two position behind oil. Unconventional Gas, such as shale gas, is foreseen to be 30 percent of Global Production in 2040, meaning conventional gas is expected to meet 70 percent of gas demand even after three decades.

“With this, the development of Natural Gas and LNG capacities will become necessary to balance the world energy equation”, he said. 

Economic and equitable development of nations, fuelled by the growing need for energy across the globe, is the priority of the day and it has to be achieved by minimising the carbon footprint. This is a serious warning and no country, energy consumer or supplier, can afford to ignore it or be indifferent to the call for sustainable development. 

Dr Sada said the future of energy will be shaped by decisive factors such as, the secure availability of conventional resources, the growth of renewable energy, development and deployment of new technologies, national energy policies, security of supply and demand in its wider sense, and reduction of geopolitical tensions which lead to logistical and investment challenges in supply across the energy value chain.

Each one of these factors are further influenced by the interplay of one or more of the three core dimensions of energy sustainability namely, energy security, energy accessibility and environmental impact mitigation. From an energy security perspective, all countries, be it importers or exporters, need to ensure availability of different energy resources to the consumers, in order to meet current and future demand. 

Accessibility and affordability of modern sources of energy, as the second tier of energy sustainability, remains a challenge confronting many countries, particularly the ones where energy consumption patterns of the poorer regions of the world tends to add to their misery and aggravate their poverty. 

There are some 1.5bn people worldwide who have no access to electricity while close to 2.6bn, nearly a third of the World’s population, rely on traditional biomass for cooking and heating which has a severe impact on the environment and health conditions. 

The third dimension of energy sustainability is environmental impact mitigation. As you are all aware, energy production, conversion, and consumption, yields by-products which are emitted into the atmosphere, in the form of greenhouse gases. All nations, at different stages of development, are aspiring to provide secure, affordable, and environmentally sound energy, endeavouring to balance this delicate trade-off, and this will continue to be a challenge. 

The minister said fossil fuels will continue to be the center piece of the energy equation; they are expected to meet about 80 percent of the world’s energy needs right up to 2040. 

With this in mind, the issue that needs to be addressed here is, what the right fossil-fuel mix would be, that serves both the future global demand for energy and the environment, through the minimization of the global carbon footprint.

He said natural gas is considered the cleanest, most efficient and versatile of all fossil fuels, abundant natural gas and widely distributed reserves, make it the fuel of choice from an environmental and economic view point. 

Natural gas has an important role to play in mitigating environmental impact when used to replace old coal-based power plants with new natural gas-fired plants, which lower emissions of carbon dioxide by more than half per kilowatt-hour generated. 

It is expected to provide 30 percent of the world’s electricity-generation needs by 2040 – up from just over 20 percent today, the minister said. 

The Peninsula