LNG: New routes for natural gas

Natural gas is plentiful and emits half as much CO2 as coal in power generation1. This energy of the future meets a growing global demand, as well as the requirements in the fight against climate change. Natural gas can be liquefied, which gives it an extra asset: peerless flexibility when it comes to transportation. As a pioneer in this field that is involved throughout the gas value or supply chain, Total is investing in liquefied natural gas (LNG) to provide energy wherever it is needed.

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    The Qatargas LNG plant located in Ras Laffan Industrial City in Qatar.

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    LNG delivery to a regasification terminal in Japan.

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    Darwin, Australia - The Ichthys LNG project, with an LNG production capacity of 8.9 million tonnes/year, should come on stream in late 2017.

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    Regasification terminal at South Hook, the largest in Europe, in Milford Haven, Wales, UK.

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    Total is developing a fleet of 15 icebreaking LNG carriers as part of the Yamal LNG project. The first will be named “Christophe de Margerie”.

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    Total's workforce is innovating to make LNG even more accessible. For example, in Ivory Coast and Pakistan the teams are working on an FSRU (floating storage and regasification terminal) project.

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TOTAL: A PIONEER AND MAJOR LNG PLAYER

LNG offers all the advantages of natural gas, and overcomes the limitations of gas pipeline networks. Thanks to the processes of liquefaction/regasification, gas can be shipped over very long distances, making it possible to deliver this energy wherever it is needed in the world, without relying on infrastructure that is fixed, difficult to maintain and more expensive to develop.

LNG today accounts for one-third of Total’s gas production. We are one of the world’s biggest gas and LNG players, and are pioneers in the field, having helped to launch liquefaction plants in Asia and the Middle East since the 1970s. We now operate throughout the entire value chain with stakes in 11 liquefaction plants in the Middle East, Asia, Europe and Africa, and in 5 regasification plants in India and Europe. For example, in 2009 we opened Europe's largest regasification terminal at South Hook (UK), with the capacity to process 15 million tonnes of LNG per year.

Other projects are in development, including the installation of floating storage and regasification units (FSRU2) in Ivory Coast and Pakistan.

INNOVATING TO MEET GROWING DEMAND

The growth potential of LNG is considerable because it can satisfy the needs of global natural gas markets. While demand for natural gas will rise by 2% per year between 2020 and 2025, we estimate that demand for LNG will grow twice as fast. In this very promising market context, we are rising to meet real technological and human challenges to enable us to make the most of gas fields.

For example, in northern Russia, the Yamal LNG liquefaction plant (under construction) is located on the banks of the Ob, a river that freezes over for eight months of the year, with temperatures that can fall to -50°C. To ensure access to the site and shipment of LNG, the teams are gradually developing a fleet of 15 icebreaking LNG carriers: a first in this field. The result of cutting-edge technology, they can transport large quantities of LNG efficiently all year long, without assistance from icebreakers. 

Innovation is also a way of reducing our environmental footprint. To ship LNG from Australia, the United States and other production points, we built two LNG carriers. They are unique: part of the LNG they carry is used to power their engines. In this way we are optimizing transportation to LNG consumer countries while also significantly reducing CO2 emissions during shipping.

 

1 CIRAIG report: “GHG Emissions Related To The Life Cycle Of Natural Gas And Coal In Different Geographical Contexts” – June 2016

2 Floating Storage and Regasification Unit

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