Trinidad LNG output 1.1mn m³ in May,
record monthly low
LNG Production, Trinidad and Tobago mn m³
Petroleumworld 09 01 2021
A deepening shortage of natural gas and soft global demand suppressed Trinidad and Tobago's LNG production to 1.1mn m³ in May, 19pc less than April, and the lowest monthly output in 18 years, according to the energy ministry.
The output reflected the impact of the indefinite shutdown since January of producer Atlantic's 3mn t/yr Train 1 -- its oldest unit that accounts for a fifth of the facility's capacity. LNG production in January-May totalled 7.17mn m³, 39pc down year on year, according to the ministry's figures.
Shell and BP are the main shareholders in the 14.8mn t/yr four-train Atlantic facility that is located at Point Fortin, in southwest Trinidad. Minority partners are Trinidad's state-owned gas company NGC and China's sovereign wealth fund CIC unit Summer Soca.
The country's January-May natural gas output fell by 20pc to 2.73Bcf/d from a year earlier.
Gas output in May of 1.06Bcf/d by the country's biggest producer BP was 15.5pc below April levels. Other major producers are Shell, BHP and EOG.
Gas allocated to LNG production in May was 910mn cf/d, 20pc less than April, according to the ministry's data
Trinidad's gas flow had been recovering since November 2017 following a long slide from a peak of 4.3 Bcf/d in 2010. The expansion has slowed since early 2020 when the Covid-19 pandemic prompted restrictions and closures that stalled the economy.
Atlantic's Train 1 was closed after BP, which supplies all the gas for the unit, said its infill drilling project failed to deliver at forecast levels.
"Although there are several projects that will deliver significant quantities of gas by the start of 2023, we cannot predict when there will be a significant reversal of the slide in LNG output," the energy ministry told Argus.
The gas shortage has also affected the country's petrochemical sector.
An additional 40mn cf/d of gas is projected by the end of 2022 from the offshore Zandolie field following a 1 August gas sales agreement between NGC and DeNovo Energy, a subsidiary of Swiss fertiliser producer Proman.
Trinidad and Tobago is aiming to restore natural gas production to pre-Covid-19 levels by the end of 2022, energy minister Stuart Young said in June.
More than 1 Bcf/d of production will come from offshore developments by BP, Shell, BHP and EOG, Young said.
Natural gas production, Trinidad and Tobago Bcf/d