Last week, the underground gas storage facilities of the southwestern Chinese city of Chongqing began to be filled with the first batches of "blue fuel", which overcame thousands of kilometers on the way from Turkmenistan, according to the news Agency Media-Turkmen ORIENT with reference to Reuters.
In the next six months, the state energy giant PetroChina will also add gas from Myanmar to vast reservoirs located at a depth of 3000 meters under the mountain peaks.
Taking these measures, the Chinese authorities are aimed at preventing shortages in the winter peak period of consumption amid the transition to environmentally friendly natural gas and total rejection of coal.
Another goal is to breathe new life into a non-viable gas well into a gas storage facility, which will be filled with imported gas. After all, the available capacity can provide only 5% of the total gas consumption.
The construction of the underground gathering infrastructure "from the very beginning" is a company that is comparable to the development of the field, that is laborious from the point of view of human and time resources and, therefore, expensive. Therefore, PetroChina specialists see an economically acceptable solution in the utilization of wells in depleted oil and gas deposits.
Of course, arrangement of storage facilities in such locations also requires a lot of effort and time. For two years, the well is tested for oil and gas and water residues, and then another three years spent on design and construction work.
In the next 5-8 years, the company intends to invest in this project more than $10 billion. The United States will eventually double its underground reserves. Currently, the PRC operates 25 UGS, providing gas to more than 200 million people. The total capacity of the tanks is 11.7 billion cubic meters. By 2020, the Chinese government plans to increase this figure to 14.8 billion cubic meters and by 2035 — up to 35 billion cubic meters.