Employment In The Oil And Gas Industry With 18 Giant Projects At A Rise 2020-2040
Within its mandate to promote and valorise hydrocarbon resources in the mining property of the Republic of Cameroon, the National Hydrocarbons Corporation (SNH) has put on promotion nine blocks in the hydrocarbons rich Rio del Rey Basin (RDR) and in the highly prospective Douala/Kribi-Campo (DKC) Basin. These blocks are Ndian River, Bolongo Exploration and Bakassi (in RDR), Etinde Exploration, Ntem, Elombo, Tilapia, Bomono and Kombe-N’sepe (in DKC).
The growth in liquefied natural gas (LNG) has had an incredible impact on the oil and gas industry over the last few years, with over 284 million tonnes of LNG being produced annually – and demand increasing. Though the USA only made its first export in 2016, growth of the global marketplace – particularly in Asia – is making this an increasingly vital part of the energy sector.
With this growth come new opportunities. Major oil and gas companies are now investing significant amounts in increasingly large liquefaction plants and export terminals. With each of these investments comes new jobs for Engineering and Technical Professionals in the surrounding areas during the Construction, Installation and Operational Phases. A conventional LNG terminal includes liquefaction Plants, Storage Facilities and Export hubs. With new onshore and offshore terminal developments being planned throughout the world there are too many to list in one place. But here are just a few of the biggest global LNG terminal projects that are being planned for construction over the next few years and will be creating thousands of engineering jobs.
Liquefied Natural Gas Production – NEW AGE SA. CONCEPTUAL PLAN
A liquefied natural gas plant.
Etinde Oilfield development will be the second Cameroon LNG project, after a first-of-its-kind LNG plant developed by Golar LNG off the coast of Kribi went fully operational in 2017 needing 1 100 workers.
The government of Cameroon and privatelyowned British company – New African Global Energy (New Age) LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) – Once fully operational, the project will provide 350-400 highly skilled local jobs 3 000 assorted jobs in both offshore and land-based roles. Michael Kimbi Tchenga, Trade Adviser at the British High Commission in Yaounde, said over the 25+ years life of the project, up to USD 2.5 billion (over FCFA 1.1 trillion) in tax revenue will be pumped into the State coffers.
Alaska LNG Liquefaction Plant USA $43 billion
The liquefaction plant, located in Nikiski, is just one part of this mega project, which also includes a gas treatment plant and 800 mile pipeline. The three-train LNG liquefaction plant will have a capacity of 20mtpa, and is expected to receive 2.8 bcf/d to liquefy.
The facility will require construction of three LNG trains, two 240,000 cubic meter storage tanks, terminal facilities and marine services and two loading berths capable of accommodating Q-Flex LNG carriers up to 217,000 cubic metres. 100,000-150,000 tons of steel will be required for the construction.
The liquefaction plant project is currently in the Pre-FEED stage. As of July 2019, the plant is undergoing a public comment period following a draft environmental impact statement that concluded that the project’s significant impact would be offset by many economic benefits. The public comment period will close in October, after which it’s hoped that Federal approval will be granted in March 2020 and construction can begin shortly after, with Q4 of 2025 eyed for a startup.
At peak construction, the LNG liquefaction facility will require a workforce of 3,500-5000 people, while a shipping and storage terminal will require 1,000-1,500 workers.
Tanzania LNG Liquefaction Plant Tanzania $30 billion
Deepwater discoveries south of Tanzania in 2011 promised significant potential for the region. Since then 15 further exploration wells have been drilled, resulting in nine discoveries with estimated volumes of more than 20 Tcf of gas in place.
Following a few delays, the Tanzania LNG Liquefaction Plant is now in Pre-FEED with the government announcing that it plans to complete negotiations with a consortium of partners so that construction can begin in the Lindi region in 2022. The consortium is being led by Equinor and includes Shell, Exxon, Ophir Energy and Pavilion Energy.
Construction is expected to last until 2028, and cost $30 billion. Initially two LNG trains will be built, each with a capacity of 5mtpa. There is also an option for an expansion with further trains to be built in the future.
Inpex Corp received approval for its revised plan of development (POD) for the Abadi LNG project from the Indonesian government on 16th July 2019. The revised plans changed the proposal from a floating LNG development to an onshore one.
The facility will be located on the Tanimbar Islands, around 150km from the Abadi gas field, and will have a planned capacity of 9.5mtpa, with around 150 MMcf/d of gas available for domestic consumption.
Inpex will next be working with Shell to begin necessary preparations of a FEED stage, following which a final investment decision (FID) will be made. The FID is expected in 2021, with commercial operations beginning in 2026.
With the Asian LNG market growing, there are increasingly valuable prospects for export from Canada. One of the biggest proponents of this is the planned LNG project in Kitimat. Operator Chevron and their partner Woodside Petroleum applied last year to expand their planned capacity by 80% to produce 18 million tonnes per annum from three LNG trains.
In July 2019 the companies announced a further amendment to their plans, with a proposal submitted for an all-electric design that aims to produce the lowest greenhouse-gas emissions per ton of LNG of any large project in the world, at less than 0.1 ton of CO2 for every ton of LNG.
Despite the now regular changes to the plans, and expected cost increases in making the plan all-electric, the facility is still expected to begin producing natural gas by 2029. The latest scheduling hopes to achieve a final investment decision in 2022-23.
The project is in the advanced engineering phase, with a FID expected later this year. Baker Hughes has been selected to provide the project with rotating equipment, while Siemens and Sembcorp Marine will build and deliver the first LMV.
Existing structures previously used for sugar and salt domes will form the basis of the offshore terminal, although significant construction will be required to build new facilities and salt storage caverns. The facility will also create jobs for the construction, installation and operation of floating liquefaction storage and offloading (FLSO) vesself to be used for the on-site liquefaction and exportation of LNG. Each of the six proposed FLSO vessels will need to be capable of producing 4mtpa. Construction is aimed to be completed for a Jan 2023 startup.
Long standing plans for the Baltic LNG Liquefaction Plant were finalised by Gazprom in April 2019, with the project to be built in Ust-Luga, Leningrad Oblast, Russia.
The proposed plant is expected to produce a capacity of 13 mtpa of LNG as well as 4 mtpa of ethane and 2.2 mtpa of liquefied petroleum gases. Two liquefaction trains will be built, with gas coming from the Achimov and Vlaanginian fields of the Nadym-Pur-Taz region. Gazpom hope to have the first train in operation by the second half of 2023, and the second in late 2024. The facility will cover an area of 1,400 hectares.
The project is a major one for the Russian government, with the Deputy Finance Minister committing 900 billion rubles ($13.87 billion) from the National Wealth Fund.
With over 100 trillion cubic feet of proven natural gas reserves having been discovered in the Rovuma basin offshore Mozambique, the country has been earmarked as a major LNG exporter.
The Rovuma LNG Liquefaction Plant is the first stage of this major shift for the country. Jointly owned by ENI, ExxonMobil and CNPC, the Rovuma plant will initially have two LNG trains, each capable of producing 8.2 million tonnes per year. Production is expected to commence in 2024.
ExxonMobil will lead the construction and operation of liquefaction and related facilities, while ENI will lead construction and operation of the upstream facilities. According to ExxonMobil, the construction phase is expected to create 5,000 local jobs, with two million hours of training being planned for. The jobs created are also expected to support the country’s economic growth long term, and create new opportunities and raised living standards for Mozambican workers.
At $12bn the Angola LNG project, built to create value from offshore gas resources, is one of the largest ever single investments in the Angolan oil and gas industry.
Offering a dedicated fleet of seven LNG vessels and three loading jetties (LNG, liquids and compressed butane), the project’s mission is to minimise the reinjection or flaring of gas; provide clean and reliable energy to customers; and maximise return on investment.Angola LNG has built one of the world’s most modern LNG processing facilities, located 350km north of Luanda in Soyo, at the mouth of the Congo River. This landmark project for Angola stands out from other global LNG projects as the plant is wholly supplied with associated gas, produced during oil field operations. Angola LNG therefore significantly contributes to the elimination of gas flaring in the country, allowing for the development of offshore oil reserves in a more environmentally sustainable manner.
Planned since 2007 but put on hold two years later following the drop in oil prices, construction on Kuwait’s Al Zour Refinery finally began in 2017, with the facility scheduled to come online in June this year.
Located 90km south of Kuwait, it will be one of the biggest refineries in the world, producing 100,000 barrels per day of low-sulphur fuel oil to be used as feedstock by the Ministry of Electricity & Water for power generation. It will use more than 1.5 million b/d of crude and 300 MMcf/d of gas feedstock.
The project entails five phases. The first is the construction of the main facilities, including three atmospheric residue desulphurisation (ARDS) units featuring two trains each, three crude distillation units (CDU), three diesel hydrotreating units (DHTU), two naphtha hydrotreating units (NHTU) and two kerosene hydrotreating units (KHTU). The second and third phases are the construction of support process units, utilities and off-sites. The fourth and fifth involve the construction of a 6.5 million barrels capacity storage tank farm and interconnecting pipelines and marine and export facilities including jetties and roll-on, roll-off berths.
The refinery is due to begin production by December 2020.
Operating in the world’s largest gas field, South Pars phases 13-14 are intended to produce 3 billion cubic feet a day of gas to be used as feedstock by the Persian LNG project.
According to the managing director of Pars Oil and Gas Company, who are in charge of developing the field, full development of the field will supply “75 percent of the country’s gas consumption for 25 years”.
Stage 13 facilities include:
- 38 wells
- 4 platforms, each with a capacity of 500mcfd
- 2 32 inch main pipelines totaling a length of 260km
- 2 4.5 inch MEG injection pipelines
- 2 18 inch infield pipelines totaling a length of 14km
Stage 14 facilities include:
- 44 wells
- 4 platforms, each with a capacity of 500mcfd
- 2 32 inch main pipelines totaling a length of 260km
- 2 4.5 inch MEG injection pipelines
- 2 18 inch infield pipelines totaling a length of 18km
It has been reported that the offshore pipelines have all been installed and both phases will be operational by the end of the current Iranian calendar year, in March 2020.
Woodside are planning to expand the Pluto LNG facility through the addition of a second LNG liquefaction train with a targeted capacity of 4-5 mtpa, that will allow them to develop the gas from the Scarborough field, located 270km off the coast of Western Australia.
Currently the facility has a single-train capacity of 4.9mtpa which uses feedstock from the Pluto and Xena fields. Due to delays in the planning of the $20.5 billion Browse project, Woodside are moving up their anticipated target for the Scarborough project with the hopes of making a final investment decision in early 2020.
What is happening in the Oil & Gas industry in 2020?
The future of the Oil & Gas market has never been quite so complex as it is at the start of this new decade. A period of recovery for oil prices along with the implementation of new technologies has created vast areas of investment and new projects that continues to create great opportunities, particularly in areas such as the Gulf of Mexico, Western Australia, Africa and the Middle East. Yet as we look ahead it is impossible to ignore the political and environmental effects that will transform the Oil & Gas industry and the wider energy sector both in the short and long term.
In terms of new projects, however, the outlook is wide open. According to sector research firm Rystad Energy, around 250 new Oil & Gas projects are likely to be sanctioned for development in 2020 – up from 160 in 2016. The number of floating production, storage and offloading vessels (FPSOs) is due to increase with as many as 28 currently on order or under construction, while around 4000km of subsea oil and gas flowlines are due for installation this year.
Deepwater projects continue to lead the way in large scale production, with the Gulf of Mexico already hitting reported to have hit record production. According to the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, the Gulf of Mexico currently exceeds 2 million barrels per day, led by high levels of production from Chevron’s Big Food and Shell’s Crosby fields, in addition to output from legacy fields such as Mars, Thunder Horse and Tahiti. The US Energy Information Administration predicts that the trend will continue to create a record year, with an expected increase of 100,000 barrels per day from 2019 levels.
The US is banking on increased interest in the deepwater prospects of the Gulf, having scheduled a major lease sale for March that will see 78 million acres of federal waters made available for development.
Guyana is an area many will be watching in 2020, following 14 discoveries made by ExxonMobil since May 2015. Exxon’s Liza Phase 1 development began oil production in late 2019 and is expected to reach its full capacity of 120,000 b/d in Q1 of 2020. It’s thought that the industry will increase Guyana’s GDP by up to 80% in the coming years.
Another trend that is expected to continue is the increasing growth of the liquefied natural gas market. As seen above there are several large scale projects currently in development that will continue to meet the global shift towards LNG. According to research by McKinsey, demand is expected to grow 3.6 percent per annum to 2035 – requiring a capacity growth of 250 billion cubic metres of LNG.
By the end of 2019 the leading exporter of LNG was Australia, which shipped an estimated 77.5 million tones, worth A$49 billion (US$33.5 billion). Much of this is credited to the growth of INPEX’s Ichthys project. Australia exported more than twice that of the US (which shipped 34.3 million tones) and just edged out Qatar who exported 75 million tones.
Western Australia alone can be counted as the world’s second largest LNG producer, and many would expect the country to continue capitalizing on its reserves, particularly with several major facilities currently being developed across the region. But with growing public concern for the environmental effects of burning fossil fuels – even a relatively clean burning fuel like LNG – the continued growth of Australia’s gas sector will have to contend with public opinion leading potential legislative changes.
This effect is of course not singular to Australia. Environmental pressures are increasing globally and the effect on legislation will be felt in the Oil & Gas industry in the years to come. For 2020 we expect to see a continuation of a trend for divestment from oil majors from what had previously been large areas, such as Exxon and Chevron moving out of the North Sea. The knock on of this is that these majors will then go in to other areas with lower costs of investment.
Despite the exit of some of the majors, there are actually signs of a resurgence in the North sea, with research and consultancy firm GlobalData reporting on 30 new crude oil and natural gas projects being launched in the area in 2020. Of these 19 will be in the UK waters, while Norway will have 10 and Denmark holding the remainder. Finally we can look towards the Oil & Gas market in the Middle East, where the United Arab Emirates are leading the way in 2020. State owned company ADNOC are reported to be targeting a production rate of 4 million barrels of oil per day by the end of 2020, in line with its plans to grow conventional drilling activity by 40% by 2025. The UAE is expected to continue investing heavily in the sector, though it is yet to be seen how political problems across the entire Middle East will affect exports through the year.
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