When Ghana Gas begins production at full capacity in April, thermal plants at Takoradi in the Western region will get more than they can ever utilize, while plants at Tema, in the Greater Accra Region will not be able to sniff a whiff of energy-producing gas.
It is because there will be no gas pipeline capable of transporting gas from the Takoradi base of the Jubilee oil fields to thermal plants in the south of Accra.
In the end, about 46million scf of gas will go waste while consumers struggle to deal with a debilitating power crisis.
Ghana Gas Company and the Petroleum Ministry revealed that from 1 st April, the full production capacity of Ghana Gas – 150million scf will be available.
But even in Takoradi, where the gas will heading, not all the plants there will be ready.
Takoradi International Company (TICO), which produces 220megawatts of electricity, is down and undergoing maintenance. This leaves only two of the Takoradi Thermal Power Stations working.
TICO can only take 25 to 30million scf of gas.
The Tema Thermal Power Complex which provides a further 126MW will get no gas in the midst of abundance.
Head of Operations at African Center for Energy Policy, Ben Boakye is advising that some immediate action be taken to get the West African Gas Pipeline to transport the fuel from Takoradi to Tema in the long term.
“There was a defect in the planning,” he says.
But an NPP Member of Parliament for Afigya Kwabere South, Hon. William Owuraku Aidoo says the 1 st April deadline for full capacity is not true. He says Ghana Gas at best will only be testing the plants to determine whether it can operate at full capacity.
“It is more to do with checking the integrity of the plant,” he said. The process of testing known as commissioning will go on for some time before the Gas Company can be confident of operating at full capacity.
He says Ghana must now address the transportation of gas to Tema.
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