Saudi switch to efficient power plants to save 550,000 b/d crude - SEC head

Updated 03 May 2014
0

Saudi switch to efficient power plants to save 550,000 b/d crude - SEC head

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia will save 200 million barrels a year of liquid fuel by switching its power stations to more efficient combined cycle turbines, the head of Saudi Electricity Co (SEC) 5110.SE said in a speech reported by state media.
The report of Ziyad Alshiha's speech did not give details on when the move towards more efficient turbines would be completed, or whether that fuel saving was compared with now or 2009, when SEC started converting its power stations.
"Continuous collaboration ... has supported SEC efforts to transform most of its existing simple cycle units to combined cycle technology and also to use super critical boilers in steam power plants," he said in the report carried by Saudi Press Agency.
"SEC expects that these current and future plans, once completed, will save approximately 200 million barrels of fuel annually," he added.
The figure of 200 million barrels a year is equivalent to almost 550,000 barrels per day (bpd).
A spokesman for SEC said he could not give any further details on the figures.
Saudi Arabia annually burns a significant amount of its crude oil in electricity stations and its rising domestic power consumption has caused some analysts to warn this will eat into the amount available for export.
However, last year it reduced its summer fuel burn, when electricity demand is highest because of increased use of air conditioning, by 10 percent to 689,750 bpd, according to government data.
That figure, achieved through increased gas supplies, better efficiency and cooler weather, was down from a record high of 763,250 million bpd during summer 2012.
Saudi Arabia is by far the largest user of crude oil for power generation, with most other countries having abandoned oil-fired generation long ago in favour of gas, nuclear and renewable sources.
However, state-owned Saudi Arabian Oil Co (Saudi Aramco) has brought more gas fields on stream in recent years for use in power plants and the government has discussed introducing atomic and solar electricity.
Alshiha added that SEC planned to spend 622 billion riyals ($166 billion) between now and 2023, adding 40,000 megawatts of installed generating capacity and expanding transmission and distribution networks.
Saudi electricity use has risen by about 6 percent a year over the last decade, with summer peak demand more than doubling to over 48,000 megawatts in 2011 from 2002, according to the national electricity regulator.


Oil prices jump as US crude stocks fall, Middle East worries add support

Updated 26 June 2019
0

Oil prices jump as US crude stocks fall, Middle East worries add support

  • Analysts said the gains were mainly driven by American Petroleum Institute data showing a fall in US crude inventories
  • Data come as traders watched for any signs that tensions between the US and Iran could escalate into military conflict
SYDNEY: Oil prices rose more than 1 percent on Wednesday to their highest in nearly a month as industry data showed US crude stockpiles fell more than expected, underpinning a market already buoyed by worries over a potential US-Iran conflict.
Front-month Brent crude futures, international benchmark for oil, were up 1.3 percent at $65.91 by 0341 GMT. They earlier touched their highest since May 31 at $66 a barrel.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $58.98 per barrel, up 1.8 percent from their last settlement. WTI earlier hit its strongest level since May 30 at $59.03 a barrel.
Analysts said the gains were mainly driven by American Petroleum Institute (API) data showing a fall in US crude inventories.
US crude stockpiles fell by 7.5 million barrels in the week ended June 21 to 474.5 million, compared with analyst expectations for a decline of 2.5 million barrels, the data showed. Crude stocks at US delivery hub Cushing, Oklahoma, fell by 1.3 million barrels.
“Oil prices went ballistic after the API report,” said Stephen Innes, a managing partner at Vanguard Markets.
“Oil prices have been squeezing higher on escalating tensions in the Middle East. But with late-day draws showing up in the API report, this is a strong signal for the energy market,” Innes said.
The data came as traders watched for any signs that tensions between the United States and Iran could escalate into military conflict.
US President Donald Trump threatened on Tuesday to obliterate parts of Iran if it attacked “anything American,” in a new war of words with Iran. Tehran has condemned a fresh round of US sanctions as “mentally retarded.”
Bilateral tensions between the two have spiked anew after Iran shot down a US drone last week in the Gulf. Relations have been tense since Washington blamed attacks on oil tankers just outside the Gulf in May and June on Iran, while Tehran has repeatedly said it had no role in the incidents.
Conflict between Washington and Tehran has stoked fears that shipments passing through the Strait of Hormuz — the world’s busiest oil supply route — could be disrupted.
Seeking to calm a nervous market, the head of national oil company Saudi Aramco said on Tuesday the company can meet the oil needs of customers using its spare capacity.