The Sub Saharan Power Summit 2015 is taking place on 23 October 2015, bringing together the senior decision makers from across the Sub African continent. The SSA Power Summit provides a platform for senior decision makers and thought leaders to discuss and engage around infrastructure related challenges and solutions.
The Southern African energy market has traditionally relied on coal to meet its energy demands. With the global migration toward cleaner burning fossil fuels and the high cost of clean coal technologies, the market has begun its migration towards the incorporation of gas into the regional energy portfolio.
The region has limited developed sources of natural gas and would not be able to meet the regional gas demand should there be a major shift to gas power generation. The smaller gas fields face significant hurdles in achieving the required anchor off-taker to support investment. In addition, the estimated cost of production from these fields is high due to the construction of offshore gas transmission pipelines, which in some cases require financing over a relatively short space of time.
In addition, reserves of unconventional gas production (shale gas and CBM) are yet to be established with much speculation on the actual resource quantums. The situation is further compounded by a flurry of environmental concerns and great resilience from local stakeholders. It is unlikely that these potential unconventional gas projects will achieve commercialisation within the next 10 to 15 years.
There are several major regional demand hubs for energy and a large number of electricity crisis projects which can make use of gas-based technologies to alleviate the problems in the short and medium to long term. Significant gas off-takes can be serviced – the region in general is underserviced with electricity so power could be generated and fed into the Southern African power pool. In addition to the market nodes, a number of mining operations and smaller industries rely on diesel fuels and fuel oil, which can be converted to natural gas. Due to the demand, alternative supply options need to be sought.
Chiraag Gokaldas, Principal Engineer at EON Consulting, will be presenting at the Sub Saharan Power Summit 2105 and will elaborate on the above supply and demand markets and suitable options to satisfy the regional demand.
Chiraag is currently working as a lead process engineer and has 10 years of engineering experience. Chiraag is an ECSA registered Professional Engineer and has a B.Sc.
qualification in Chemical Engineering as well as an MSc in Chemical Engineering. His areas of specialisation include plant design engineering, management of construction and primary fuel. Chiraag is currently working on a range of gas projects in various advisory roles. He has also worked on the gasification and gas desulphurisation projects for Exxon Mobil. Chiraag is also fuel specialist for the Xaris 250 MW OCGT plant and fuel supply infrastructure project, GDID Trigeneration project, and Symbion CCGT and transmission infrastructure in Mtwara, Tanzania.