Gas for Bangladesh from Indian LNG terminal

06 June 2014

India's H-Energy East Coast Private Ltd (HEECPL) has sought clearance for a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminal in West Bengal's Digha, that will also supply gas to Bangladesh, company officials say.
This will help Bangladesh tide over its now-chronic gas shortages until such time it finds fresh deposits of natural gas and gets to use them mainly for generating power.
The 8 million tonne LNG terminal will come up in the Digha offshore on the West Bengal coast and will not only supply gas to north and east India but also to Bangladesh.
Through a 2050 km long pipeline from Haldia port in West Bengal to Jagdishpur in Uttar Pradesh, it will supply LNG to industrial locations on the upcoming Amritsar-Kolkata growth corridor in several Indian states between Punjab and West Bengal.
The pipeline will be laid by the state-owned Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL) at the cost of 7,060 crore Indian rupees.
"This huge source of green energy will be a boost for all industries planned in UP, Bihar, Jhakrkhand, West Bengal, Punjab, Haryana and Delhi region," said a HEEPCL official.
He said that the company intends to get a pipeline done for transporting gas to Bangladesh as well.
"It is definitely part of our overall plan for the LNG terminal. The pipeline to carry gas to Bangladesh will be laid from Haldia to Petrapole and then on to the gas grid at Jessore," a top HEEPCL official said.
But he was not willing to be quoted because he was not authorised to speak to the media.
"It is early days and we have got to get environment clearance, but that should not be difficult," the official said.
The Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) for projects related to infrastructure development and coastal regulation zone went through the HEECPL application in April and sought designs, details of the onshore receiving facility (ORF), a map of the maximum damage distance in a worst-case scenario and measures proposed to prevent issues relating to fishing boat movement close to the shore over the pipeline.
HEECPL officials say these details would soon be provided to the EAC.
"The project comprises two components. One is the floating storage regasification unit. This will be located in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and is out of the purview of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) 2006 and coastal regulation zone (CRZ) 2011 notifications. The Floating Storage Regasification Unit (FSRU) will be located at a point where the depth of water is nearly 50 metres and will be moored to the seabed via a turret mooring system. Tankers will transfer natural gas in a liquefied form to the FSRU. Regasification will be carried out by sea water-based intermediate fluid vaporisers," a top HEECPL official said.
The natural gas will then flow through a sub-sea pipeline that will be nearly 115km long to reach the Onshore Receiving Facility (ORF). The ORF will be set on 10 acres of land that will connect to the GAIL India pipeline, the HEECPL officials said.
According to them, West Bengal government has already recommended the development of this huge LNG terminal under the Coastal Zone Management Act.
The Zoological Survey of India has also conducted a study to ensure that the project does not damage marine ecological habitats. The cold water discharge from LNG re-gasification has been modelled by Indian Institute of Technology in Bengal's Kharagpur to ensure that the existing marine ecological habitat is exposed to minimal risks.
"The project will provide cleaner and cheaper fuel and this will reduce the cost of industrial production. It will help in the socio-economic development of states like West Bengal, Jharkhand and Bihar. It will also enable the setting up of gas-based power projects to enable peak loads for electricity," the HEECPL official said.

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