Nigeria’s oil production crashed by about 14.94 million barrels in the second quarter of 2022, according to data obtained from the latest Monthly Oil Market Report of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) for June 2022.
An analysis of the figures released by OPEC and the average cost of crude in Q2 2022 obtained from global oil price reports indicated that Nigeria’s oil earnings plunged by about N703.76billion, being the worth of the 14. 94 million barrels of crude that was lost during the period under review.
Based on direct communication from OPEC’s 13-member states on crude oil production, OPEC said in the first quarter of 2022, Nigeria produced 1.299 million barrels of oil per day.
This, however, dropped to 1.133 million barrels per day in the second quarter, indicating a plunge of 166,000 barrels per day.
The implication is that for the estimated 90-day period in Q2 2022, the country could not produce (or lost) about 14.94 million barrels of crude oil.
Data obtained from, Statistica, the global statistical firm, showed that the average prices of crude in April, May and June this year were $104.58/barrel, $113.34/barrel and $122.71/barrel, respectively.
This means that the average for the quarter under review is $113.54/barrel. Therefore, by losing 14.94 million barrels in Q2, 2022, Nigeria’s oil earnings plunged by about $1.696billion (N703.96billion at the official exchange rate of N415/$).
Meanwhile, the Federal Government and operators in the oil sector have repeatedly decried the plunge in Nigeria’s oil production, as they often attribute it to acts of vandalism by oil thieves.
In his reaction to the concern, the Managing Director (MD), Seplat Energy Plc, Roger Brown, said there was a need for more synergy between the public and the private sectors to address this issue.
The MD, who spoke at the just-concluded 2022 Nigeria Oil and Gas conference in Abuja, explained that Nigeria had abundant resources of crude oil and gas, but stressed that this could only translate to value if properly harnessed.
“It is clear that on the oil side, the theft levels are just unsustainable. We have a crippling economy because of it and that has to be solved,” he said.
He added that “On the gas side, it’s about fixing the value chain from gas to electricity, from molecules to electrons across the country and getting it right”.
Also at the just concluded conference, the Group Managing Director, NNPC, Mele Kyari, revealed that the decline in the funding of oil investments had virtually led to a halt in the drilling of crude oil by operators in the sector, except for the national oil firm.
Speaking on the challenges in the industry, the NNPC boss stated that though there were other concerns in the business, the issue with reduced funding had really impacted severely on the sector.
Noting that Nigeria was number one in terms of oil reserves in Africa, Kyari said “we should be the number one producer of oil, but today we have our challenges, which my colleagues (earlier speakers) have pointed out.
“Yes, there are engagements going on and the support that we are getting from government security agencies and the leadership that the Minister of State is giving us to make sure we address this issue around security.
“But that is not only the problem we have. We have seen a clear natural decline that is happening in our industry today and this is real. And when such decline comes and you are not able to put money to put it back, no one is drilling today except NNPC by the way, and a few others.”
He added, “So if you don’t drill and decline continues, then you are not only going to see the effect of theft and other vandal actions that we are seeing today, you are also going to see the collateral effect of lack of investments.”
Rivers Communities Lament Neglect By NNPC, Others
The indigenes of Umuapu, Ihie, Obitti, Awarra, Ochia, Assa and Obile communities of Ohaji/Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State, have appealed to the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, the govenrment and Oil Companies operating at their area to quickly reconstruct the Oil Access Road that links these communities and others.
They said the prompt reconstruction of the road would ease traffic tension, reduce road accident to the minimal, encourage commercial activities as well as strengthen social comfort and security at the region.
The appeal followed a peaceful protest staged by the women of the area on the Oil Access Road, recently.
The protesters, who wore black clothes, carried placards which had different inscriptions, chanted songs as they demonstrated.
Speaking through one of their leaders, Nwada Ruth Amadi, the women urged the Nigerian National Petroleum Cooperation (NNPC), the present administration of Sen. Hope Uzodimma, and other Oil Companies operating in their region to quickly reconstruct the link road in order to reduce suffering, agony, avert danger and spur the locals to enhance productivity and comfort.
Amadi expressed regret that the road has been in a deplorable condition over the years with NNPC, Government and Oil Companies such as Waltersmith Petroleum, Seplat Petroleum, Sterling Global Petroleum among others, doing nothing to reconstruct the link road.
According to them, lives have been lost, just as many sustained severe degrees of injuries due to the bad state of the said road, insisting that authorities concerned liaise with the people including leadership of the church and the civil society for a way forward.
Amadi said “we regret the negligence and maltreatment we get from NNPC/Government and Oil Companies milling oil in our land.
“Despite the huge revenue being generated and carted away by these oil companies whose vehicles cause huge damage on the road, those concerned keep dead mute towards the reconstruction of the road, leaving us and other ordinary road users to suffer adversely.
“Hence, we deemed it right to stage a peaceful protest on the spoilt road, to appeal to authorities concerned to immediately reconstruct the road to save us from suffering, pains and imminent danger. We expect these authorities to be proactive, not reactive.
“We cannot continue to fold our hands and suffer. The NNPC, government and the Oil Companies have never hugely done things that benefit the entire Ohaji enclave. Rather they allow some leaders of the area to mislead them”.
Hydrogen Set To Compete With Fossil Fuels
University of Houston energy researchers suggest hydrogen fuel can potentially be a cost-competitive and environmentally friendly alternative to gasoline and diesel, and that supplying hydrogen for transportation in the greater Houston area can be profitable today.
The research team is offering a white paper titled, “Competitive Pricing of Hydrogen as an Economic Alternative to Gasoline and Diesel for the Houston Transportation Sector”, where they examine the promise for the potential of hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector.
The white paper offers that traditional liquid transportation fuels like gasoline and diesel are preferred because of their higher energy density.
Unlike vehicles using gasoline, which releases carbon dioxide, and diesel, which contributes ground, level ozone, fuel cell electric vehicles refuel with hydrogen in five minutes and produce zero emissions.
The paper then pitches “According to the Texas Department of Transportation, Houston had approximately 5.5 million registered vehicles in the fiscal year 2022. Imagine if all these vehicles were using hydrogen for fuel”.
Houston, home to many hydrogen plants for industrial use, offers several advantages, according to the researchers.
The study explains, “It (Houston) has more than sufficient water and commercial filtering systems to support hydrogen generation. Add to that the existing natural gas pipeline infrastructure, which makes hydrogen production and supply more cost effective and makes Houston ideal for transitioning from traditional vehicles to hydrogen-powered ones”.
The study compares three hydrogen generation processes: steam methane reforming (SMR), SMR with carbon capture (SMRCC), and electrolysis using grid electricity and water.
“The researchers used the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)’s H2A tools to provide cost estimates for these pathways, and the Hydrogen Delivery Scenario Analysis Model (HDSAM) developed by Argonne National Laboratory to generate the delivery model and costs.
Additionally, it compares the cost of grid hydrogen with SMRCC hydrogen, showing that without tax credit incentive SMRCC hydrogen can be supplied at a lower cost of $6.10 per kg hydrogen at the pump, which makes it competitive.
Professor Christine Ehlig-Economides said, “This research underscores the transformative potential of hydrogen in the transportation sector. Our findings indicate that hydrogen can be a cost-competitive and environmentally responsible choice for consumers, businesses, and policymakers in the greater Houston area”.
Your humble writer is full of suspicion. As regular readers know, hydrogen is gaseous at any sensible consumer operating temperature and pressure. Its the smallest atom and slithers through most everything.
Its not something one would want stored in an attached garage. The fuel cell tech isn’t quite there yet. And the study relies on power numbers for steam that likely come from natural gas. Just where the electrical watts needed from the grid would come from is anybody’s guess.
For all the contestable points the work does suggest that hydrogen fuel cells have economic potential. Maybe someday there will be a few models of hydrogen fueled automobiles to choose from.
But right now, the market forcing of electric battery energized cars isn’t building any confidence. Add to that the government wants to force heat pumps and electric appliances as the only choices. This after wind and solar aren’t looking like economically healthy ideas after all.
The reality forecast suggests a disaster. Government plus rule and regulation force? What will a community tolerate when forced to choose between air conditioning and charging the car tonight?
Hydrogen might be the energy / fuel nirvana someday. But know one knows how that system is going to look today. All this political pressure is looking to blow the system up.
By: Brian Westenhaus
Westenhaus writes for oilprice.com.
Seplat Plc Plans $250m Investment In Sapele Gas Plant
The Director, New Energy, Seplat Plc, Effiong Okon, has unveiled the company’s plan to construct a new $250m gas plant in Sapele, Delta State.
Okon made the disclosure during the Nigeria Oil and Gas Outlook event with the theme “Investing in Nigeria’s Energy Future”, in Lagos.
Okon, who noted that the company was committed to its vision of contributing to the energy landscape, said investing in the Sapele gas plant would further prove Seplat’s commitment.
Speaking during a panel discussion on “Secured Energy Transition Towards Gas”, Effiong explained that with the investment, the Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) would be made more available in the market.
He said, “we are also starting a brand-new plant in Sapele, the Sapele gas plant, another $250 million investment that will deliver a lot of LPGs to the market”.
Giving insights into the company’s timeline, Effiong announced that Seplat’s Joint Venture gas processing facility in Imo State is set to be completed by December, with plans for commissioning in January 2024.
Okon, while addressing the broader investment climate, emphasized the pivotal role of the private sector in driving investments in the oil and gas sector.
He further stated that the government’s support through policies and ensuring a secure environment was crucial for fostering sustainable growth and development in the industry.
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