Essar Oil & Gas Exploration & Production Ltd has been delivering impressive performance, and is enroute to further growth and investments. Press Trust of India and Anand Bazaar Patrika recently caught up with Mr Pankaj Kalra, CEO – Essar Exploration & Production, to know more about company’s increasing numbers and future plans
Essar Oil & Gas Exploration & Production Ltd (EOGEPL) has been delivering impressive performance, and is enroute to further growth and investments. PTI (Press Trust of India) and Anand Bazaar Patrika recently caught up with Mr Pankaj Kalra, CEO – Essar Exploration & Production, to know more about company’s increasing numbers and future plans. Here’s their report.
Essar To Invest Rs 2,000 Crore In Bengal’s Brownfield CBM Project
The company is currently contributing Rs 150 crore to the state exchequer annually which is likely to go up to Rs 300 crore once production of CBM from Raniganj is ramped up
Source: Press Trust of India, outlookindia.com
Essar Oil and Gas Exploration and Production Ltd (EOGEPL) will invest another Rs 2,000 crore in the next 18 to 24 months in its coal bed methane project in West Bengal’s Raniganj, an official said.
The company earlier had already invested Rs 5,000 crore in the Raniganj block in drilling 350 wells and producing nearly 0.9 million metric standard cubic metres (mmscd) of gas per day.
Chief executive officer (CEO) of EOGEPL, Pankaj Kalra, told PTI that another investment of Rs 2,000 crore will be made for drilling 200 more wells in the next 18 to 24 months.
“We are employing the latest technology in the existing wells to ramp up production from 0.9 mmscd to 1.3 mmscd which will be completed in a few months,” Kalra said.
Total CBM production from Ranigunj will touch around three mmscd when the additional wells become operational, Kalra added.
He said the company is currently contributing nearly 65 per cent to the country’s total CBM production, which is likely to go up to 90 per cent post drilling of the additional wells.
Kalra also said two shale gas wells, another form of unconventional hydrocarbon, will also be drilled at Raniganj in 2023 as a pilot project following which a detailed appraisal will be done.
The company is currently contributing Rs 150 crore to the state exchequer annually which is likely to go up to Rs 300 crore once production of CBM from Raniganj is ramped up.
The official also said that being an unconventional form of energy, China and Australia are giving support to CBM production in those countries by subsidising the sector to bring in more investors.
He said CBM has the potential to displace 10 to 30 per cent of the annual requirement of LNG imports in the near term thus reducing import bills.
Essar invests to increase natural gas production in West Bengal
Source: Anand Bazaar Patrika
Essar Oil and Gas Exploration and Production (EOGEPL) has planned to invest another 2000 crore rupees to increase natural gas production in West Bengal. The company says its aim is to increase daily production 30 lakh cubic metre, which is 9 lakh cubic metre right now and is going to touch 10 lakh soon.
Essar has already invested around 5000 crore rupees on the CBM extraction project in the state. They have been doing it in the Raniganj area for a long time. The company is of the opinion that the demand for gas in the eastern region of the country will see a swift rise in future. They need to be prepared for that. Most of the gas they are extracting right now is being supplied through GAIL’s pipeline under the Urja Ganga project. GAIL is supplying that to 3 government and private concerns of south Bengal, including Kolkata. It is being sold as fuel for vehicles. Once GAIL’s pipeline is ready and more natural gas is available, it will be used as cooking gas and industrial fuel, too.
Mr Pankaj Kalra, CEO of EOGEPL, said “The way the use of natural gas is being stressed on in this country, the daily demand will reach 1.5 crore cubic metre in no time, according to the company’s estimates. The decision to invest more in CBM production in this state has been taken keeping that in mind.”
The Modi government wants to reduce dependence on oil or coal as fuel. Figures say, 6% of India’s total amount of fuel comes from gas. The central government’s aim is to take that up to 15% by 2030. People in the know believe CBM will play a major role in that. According to Mr Kalra, West Bengal has a huge reserve of coal-based natural gas. His company wants to capitalise on that.
The Essar official said, “We are producing 65% of total CBM production in the country. Essar was the first company to successfully produce CBM on a commercial basis. Now we are investing for the second stage of this project in the state. New wells will be dug to increase extraction. As and when the investment plan is realised, 30 lakh cubic metre gas will be extracted daily. The company will be in charge of producing 5% of the country’s total production.”
According to Essar, so far they have dug 348 wells in east Raniganj to extract CBM. Most of it is being sold to GAIL. Essar has laid 64 kilometres of pipeline for distribution to other customers. They have also built modern centres to preserve CBM. Customers get it from there only. Apart from CBM, the company also has plans to extract shell gas (gas accumulated inside layers of stone).
What is CBM
Coal Bed Methane is a natural gas. It accumulates for years inside coal mines between layers of coal. It is obtained by digging wells and extracting with pumps.
What are the uses of CBM
It is used as fuel for cooking or vehicles. Some industries even use this gas to produce different kinds of products.
Who are the customers
Because of the need to supply CBM through pipeline under the Urja Ganga project, Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL) is the biggest customer of CBM extracted by Essar right now. There are other gas supply companies, too. Many industries get CBM through pipeline.
Special qualities of CBM
Amount of carbon in CBM is less than in fuels like coal, diesel etc. Therefore, it is more environment-friendly.
People in the know have claimed that if CBM production is increased in the country and used, then the need to import oil would be reduced as its demand as fuel would come down.