ExxonMobil Corp.'s chief executive said last week that not only is increased liquefied natural gas (LNG) production still very necessary to meet the world's insatiable gas demand, but also that his company plans to be the lead player in the movement.
Speaking at the nineteenth World Petroleum Congress in Madrid, ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson said joint ventures in Qatar in which ExxonMobil participates will start up projects over the next two years that will bring more LNG to market than any other international oil company. Tillerson outlined the challenge of supplying growing energy needs while minimizing the impact on the environment.
"New energy technologies for energy supply, such as those enabling an increase in world LNG supplies, together with technologies to improve energy efficiency, will be critical in meeting the world's energy challenge," Tillerson said. "On the supply side, technological breakthroughs in the production and transportation of LNG -- such as ExxonMobil and Qatar Petroleum's Q-Max technology enabling an 80% increase in LNG ship cargo capacity -- are facilitating the development of a global market for cleaner-burning natural gas.
"Not only will a global LNG market help supply increasing energy demand, it will also strengthen global energy security by helping to diversify supplies. And because it is cleaner-burning than other conventional sources, natural gas has important environmental advantages as well."
He added that partnerships such as the one with Qatar are making LNG's potential a reality. He outlined the Adriatic LNG terminal project led by ExxonMobil, Qatar Terminal Ltd. and Edison SpA. The project is seen as a key component of plans to bring new LNG supplies to market. "International partnerships are essential to fostering technologies that increase supplies, strengthen security and reduce environmental impacts," Tillerson said. "We must approach this challenge by advancing technologies to increase supplies, while using energy more efficiently. No single source can meet the world's growing energy needs -- and no single segment of our industry can either."
According to Tillerson, Adriatic LNG will be the first offshore gravity-based regasification terminal in the world, and will have the capacity to provide 10% of Europe's LNG supply. Construction is nearing completion and the terminal is scheduled to be moved to location in the Adriatic Sea offshore Italy in August. In addition to projects in Qatar and the Adriatic LNG project, ExxonMobil is also participating in the development of a number of other LNG projects around the world.
Tillerson also outlined the role energy consumers have to play in meeting the energy challenge from the demand side. "Energy efficiency extends the life of the world's resource endowment, reduces greenhouse-gas emissions, helps drive down energy prices -- and strengthens energy security," Tillerson said.
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