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31/01/2018 - 07:00hs

Brazilian power plant to use gas from Qatar

CELSE will use the product as fuel for thermoelectric plant. It’s still in construction and will be part of a venture that will also have regasification plants. Contract stipulates for supply to begin in 2020.

São Paulo – The state of Sergipe will complete, next year, the construction works of the thermoelectric complex that will receive gas from Qatar, an Arab Gulf country, beginning on 2020. The Centrais Elétricas do Sergipe (CELSE) is responsible for the construction of the Thermoelectric Complex Porto de Sergipe I and signed, a year ago and two months ago, an agreement for the supply of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) with Ocean LNG Limited, a joint venture between Qatar Petroleum and ExxonMobil.

Press Release/CELSE

The complex is in Barra dos Coqueiros

According to an interview to ANBA, via email, by CELSE’s president, Eduardo Maranhão, Ocean LNG will supply up to 1.3 million tons of LNG per year to CELSE. The agreement stipulates continuous supply for 25 years until December 2044, according to Maranhão. The natural gas will be used as fuel to the complex’s thermoelectrical plant, which will generate energy to the transmission line linked to the National Integrated System (SIN).

According to information from CELSE, the Thermoelectric Complex Porto de Sergipe I will include a thermoelectric plant, which will turn natural gas in electrical energy, a 33-km transmission line and a set of offshore installations. The latter are part of a LNG floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) and a gas pipeline. The gas will come from Qatar in its liquefied form and will go through regasification process in these new facilities.

According to the company, the complex will use high-end technology, which will optimize the plant in its highest production level. The FSRU ship will be anchored and will receive gas from Qatar. Its capacity will be of 170,000 cubic meters of LNG, enough to supply the complex’s thermoelectrical plant for 17 days at full operation (24 hours a day). According to CELSE, the FSRU ship is being built by Samsung and will be operated by the company Golar Power.

According to Maranhão, CELSE chose to import LNG from Qatar due to the need of securing continuous supply of natural gas for 25 years, which was needed for the company to enter the type A-5 new energy bidding round. The bidding, in which CELSE took part in 2015, included plants that would be operating commercially in up to five years. At the time, the Sergipe-based company was able to earn 26 contracts to supply gas starting in 2020.

Besides using natural gas from Qatar at the complex’s plant, the non-used supply can be re-supplied to new companies interested to establish themselves in the region. “But the priority is the supply to the thermoelectric plant,” says Maranhão. According to CELSE, the LNG is the cleanest fuel option and generates 90% less gas emissions than diesel-run thermoelectric plants.

After the construction work of the complex is completed, in 2019, the tests and commissioning phase will begin, which is the process of securing that everything is up to the operational requirements. According to CELSE’s president, in January of 2020 the plant will be ready to supply energy commercially, as established by the purchase and sales agreements signed at the biddings.

The supply of LNG from Qatar to Sergipe should boost the exports of the Arab country to Brazil. Qatar already exports gas to the Brazilian market, but not in high volumes. Last year, the Middle East nation shipped USD 445,8 million worth of products to Brazil, from which not even 10% – USD 35.9 million – was made up of natural gas. Most of exports were fertilizers. The Brazilian states that bought the highest volumes of gas from Qatar in 2017 were Ceará, with USD 27.5 million, and Bahia, with USD 8.4 million.

According to CELSE, the Thermoelectric Complex Porto de Sergipe I will need a total investment of BRL 5 billion (USD 1.62 billion), the largest investment ever done in the state. The venture is in Barra dos Coqueiros county, in Aracaju’s metro area. CELSE was created by Brazilian company Eletricidade Brasil (EBrasil) and Golar Power, a joint venture between Norwegian Golar LNG and the North American private equity firm Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners.

Centrais Elétricas de Sergipe (CELSE)
Website: http://www.celse.com.br/
Phone: 55 79 3022-9200

*Translated by Sérgio Kakitani

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