The polar wave complicates the gas supply and the situation could extend until the weekend – Nexofin

After more than ten days without supply, in the middle of the cold wave, this Monday they warned that the shortage of compressed natural gas (CNG) that affects industries and service stations could last until next weekend.

The president of the Federation of Fuel Entities of the province of Buenos Aires, Juan Carlos Basilico, confirmed the situation and pointed out that the solution to the problem depends on the arrival of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) ships acquired by the Government.

“No one expected winter at this time. There are 20 ships coming that were for the first half of June and they ordered another 10. By the end of the week it would be solved,” said Basilico in an interview with Radio Splendid.

The business representative also explained that the federation sent multiple document letters to President Javier Milei and the Secretary of Energy, Eduardo Rodríguez Chirilo, requesting responses on the issue. In addition, they asked the governor of the province of Buenos Aires, Axel Kicillof, for explanations.

“In the previous government they said that we were going to have gas to pull up and every 100 kilometers they had an inauguration and now we don’t have gas. Let’s put the money in and don’t waste it,” Basilico claimed.

The energy system is located in the pre-emergency stagewhich involves constant monitoring and cutting off supply for users with interruptible contracts, such as some industries and CNG stations.

Initially, service to these interruptible contracts was cut and will remain that way until the cold wave passes. Now, due to the increase in demand, the next step has been advanced, which means that industries with a firm contract must reduce their consumption to a minimum to avoid gas shortages in homes and power outages. Additionally, more than 200 gas stations across the country cannot sell CNG to their customers.

This May has recorded lower temperatures than usual for autumn, but the problem was aggravated because the Works on the compressor plants of the Vaca Muerta gas pipeline are not completed.

The completion of these works in Neuquén and the province of Buenos Aires was delayed due to the change of government and has only recently been accelerated. In this sense, it is expected that in the short term they will be able to inject 5 million additional cubic meters into the system to the 11 million m³ currently available.

For their part, the sector affirms that if the Otrayén, Salliqueló and Mercedes plants had been completed within the original deadlines, Vaca Muerta would already be injecting at least 22 million m³ per day.

To make up for the lack of gas, LNG purchases have been made abroad, which are regasified at the Escobar terminal (until 2023 there was another ship in Bahía Blanca). The state company Enarsa has already put out to tender 20 vessels (half of those purchased last year) for a total of 1 million m³. Most have mooring dates between the beginning of June and the end of August.

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