A dedicated micro‐LNG plant near the Queensland township of Chinchilla has been officially opened by Queensland Premier, Campbell Newman, who used the opportunity to also launch a new Queensland Fuels and Energy strategy.
BOC, a member of The Linde Group, has entered into a long‐term gas supply agreement with QGC, enabling them to produce LNG for a range of domestic fuel uses in the manufacturing, mining, and long‐haul trucking markets.
The gas will also be available for use in the stationary energy sector and for cleaner power generation in remote communities.
The total spend for the gas, micro‐LNG plant, and supply chain infrastructure by BOC will be over $200 million over 15 years, producing up to 50 tonnes of LNG per day into the domestic market, the equivalent of 70,000 litres of conventional diesel per day.
BOC South Pacific Managing Director, Colin Isaac, said the plant heralded a positive new era for cleaner fuel in Queensland that also utilised Australian design and construction expertise in LNG fuel production.
“This plant marks the start of a new industry for Queensland giving local and interstate manufacturing, off grid electricity generation and heavy transport users the opportunity to switch to LNG, an environmentally cleaner fuel than current alternatives,” Mr Isaac said.
“LNG produces up to 25% fewer emissions than diesel when used for transport and is a proven, safe alternative to other fossil fuels. It is also ideal for marine vessels and is Great Barrier Reef friendly, because unlike diesel and marine oil it evaporates if spilled with no toxic effects.”
Mr Isaac thanked the Queensland Premier for his government’s leadership and willingness to support the opportunity to facilitate locally produced LNG in Queensland’s fuel mix, utilising Queensland’s abundant natural gas supply.
“Through this exciting project being launched today in the Surat Basin, Queensland is recognising its natural gas advantage and will become one of the leaders in supply of cleaner, cost effective alternatives to imported diesel,” Mr Isaac said.
“BOC and its subsidiary ELGAS already have offtake customers in local food manufacturing (including Nestle & Buderim Ginger), mining, and other sectors who want to utilise locally produced natural gas fuels as part of their contribution to cost effective reduction of greenhouse gases and other pollutants.”
“BOC is proud to be a leader in the LNG space. We are innovating in new LNG applications, such as stationary energy and generation in remote communities, and we hope in time to continue to progress an ‘LNG highway’ for the heavy transport sector along Australia’s eastern seaboard.”
BOC began its Australian LNG operations with its Dandenong plant in Victoria over 30 years ago. BOC has also developed the micro‐LNG plant concept with its Tasmanian plant, which was commissioned in 2010.
“As we consider where to build future LNG plants, we are encouraged that the Queensland Government recognises the opportunity and need for Queensland to ensure it has cleaner and more diverse fuel options for the future. Natural gas fuels such as this locally produced LNG are good for the environment and are good for Australian skills and jobs,” Mr Isaac said.
The plant will use natural gas fed into the Roma – Brisbane pipeline by QGC.
QGC Technical and Commercial Director, Walter Simpson, said this is an example of how the advantages of natural gas development in Queensland are flowing through to the local economy.
“Meeting gas supply commitments under long-term contracts with domestic customers, such as BOC, is our first order of priority for QGC’s natural gas production,” Mr Simpson said.
“Over the next few years we will be ramping up production in order to also keep our two trains full at Curtis Island producing LNG for international markets.”
Using proven and safe technology, BOC will liquefy the natural gas in a refrigeration process and the resulting LNG will be transported in specially designed vacuum tankers to customers and a network of refuelling stations from Queensland to Victoria.
The plant will run 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with local operators supported from BOC’s Remote Operations Centre located in Sydney.