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2023.05.15 Aggreko

The Energy Transition to natural gas

Are you looking to eliminate diesel power completely from your operations?

That’s far easier said than done in the oil and gas industry. Particularly when it comes to powering the main drilling phase of a plant, artificial lifts, and remote oilfields.

But if you’ve already done everything you can to reduce emissions from diesel generators and begun to utilise gas in some of your operations you’re probably looking to take the next step. Especially as environmental regulations are tightening every year and diesel prices are rising worldwide.

In this blog post, we’re going to look at the next phase of your Energy Transition. Specifically, how you can completely replace diesel with gas power for your entire plant.

Benefits of natural gas

First and foremost, as you’ll know if you’ve already started using it in some areas, switching from diesel to gas significantly reduces your carbon footprint. Compared to diesel, natural gas emits up to 40% less CO2, 80% less NOx, and 99% less SO2.

Secondly, it’s now much more economically viable to make use of the gases associated with oil production. Where previously these have been flared or vented due to the difficulty and expense of harnessing them, stricter regulations and improved technology have changed the picture. Combined with rocketing diesel prices – investing in gas treatment and distribution now makes financial sense.

But just how easy is it to make a complete switch to gas? And what if your plant isn’t producing enough to meet all your power demands?

Natural gas distribution systems

If you’ve already transitioned to gas in some areas, you’ve probably had your site surveyed to identify the most efficient way of converting it to power and distributing it across your plant.

If you haven’t, get in touch with Aggreko and our experts will show you how this can be done. Our experts will produce a detailed report explaining how the gas will be treated and then piped around a field or distributed via a centralised microgrid.

But what if the available gas power is outweighed by the power requirements of your site? Does that mean you still need to rely on diesel to make up the shortfall?

Not anymore.

While using diesel and gas together is an important phase of your Energy Transition, there are ways to bring in extra gas cost-effectively.

Some parts of the world are served by natural gas pipelines, so if your plant is close enough to one of these you can link up to it and purchase the extra gas you need.

We know that there are many regions and remote areas not covered by these pipelines though. That’s why Aggreko has looked at creating virtual pipelines for our customers.

These can provide a regular supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to sites outside the reach of the existing gas distribution infrastructure. The gas is cooled to -162℃, shrinking its volume to about 1/600th of its gaseous state, making it safer to store and easier to transport. It is then shipped in cryogenic tank containers to wherever it is needed. By having sufficient storage facilities at your plant you can ensure that there is always enough gas available to power all your operations.

And you might not even need to purchase any gas.

Perhaps you have a gas well that produces more natural gas than it needs, and another that doesn’t produce enough. A virtual pipeline can be set up to link these sites so that each has all the gas fuel it needs and diesel use can be eliminated.

Producing more gas than you can use across your business? Don’t let it go to waste. Partnerships can be formed with other sectors that need it such as mining, data centres, and cryptocurrency. Virtual pipelines make it easy to distribute the gas to them, or alternatively, you can transport it and sell it back to your nearest grid.

Where are you in your Energy Transition?

The Energy Transition looks different for every company. Each has its own challenges that dictate how quickly and easily it can reduce emissions and move to cleaner energy.

Whatever stage of your Energy Transition you’ve reached, Aggreko can help you take the next steps. Our free guide explains each phase from the quick wins of diesel emissions reduction all the way through to the adoption of renewable energy. Read it today to discover how you can reach Net Zero at your own pace.

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