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CBM could become Asia and Australia’s shale gas

Oilfield Technology,

Almost 40% of all global CBM reserves are located in China, Australia, India and Indonesia. Estimated reserves of 2800 trillion ft3 are about three times the proven natural gas reserves of Qatar. With Australia leading the industrial development of CBM, and with promising growth emerging in Asia, efficient measures to reduce project costs, while preserving the environmen,t are necessary.

Mr Hans Kristian Danielsen, head of DNV Cleaner Energy in Australia, said: “DNV is engaged in several mega-LNG projects in Australia including CBM projects. In CBM-based LNG developments, we see gaps between competencies in project development practices of onshore contractors newly involved in CBM and the requirements of owners of mega-LNG developments. DNV sees an opportunity to reduce project construction risks by establishing and aligning best practices through third party monitoring of project performance.”

“The study mapped out CBM-based LNG project developments and opportunities in Asia and Australia with a focus on safety and environmental considerations that are different from conventional gas project. The project identified the challenges and risk drivers that CBM companies face and also how DNV can help companies overcome these risks” says chief technology officer of DNV Clean Technology Centre in Singapore, Dr Jens Petter Tronskar, “Companies which address and mitigate project risks at an early stage are well positioned to reduce the probabilities for budget and schedule overruns.”

The study concluded that CBM project performance could be improved through increased support from third party companies on validating project life cycle cost calculations. Such validation would address technical, safety and commercial matters. Third parties should validate concept evaluation of upstream CBM well facilities, downstream gas processing and export pipeline. Third party verification of CBM engineering designs, pipeline reliability and maintainability should be undertaken.

More effective and robust regulatory frameworks on environmental, social and economic aspects of CBM are needed in many countries in order to speed a safe and economical sound scaling of CBM projects. More comprehensive standards for environmental baseline assessments and for the disposal or treatment of produced water will also need to be established to further increase value of investments and reduce negative impacts on the environment. “DNV is now equipped to provide risk management services spanning from establishing regulatory frameworks and standards to onsite verification to the evolving CBM industry in Asia and Oceania, leveraging on our well established best practises from the conventional Offshore and Onshore Energy Industry” says Bjorn Tore Markusen, managing director of DNV’s Clean Technology Centre.

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