Gas flaring refers to a process where natural gases are burnt on oilfields without being used. As global warming has become a pressing concern, there is a strong push for cutting down on gas flaring. This is particularly for a country like Uzbekistan, which is in need of rethinking how it manages its natural gases.
For this purpose, Uzbekistan intends to enlist the help of Italian firm Turboden S.p. to solve the issue. Turboden S.p.A is a company within the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries group and works with the ORC or Organic Rankine Cycle systems. Its work is related to designing, maintaining, and manufacturing these systems. ORC itself is capable of creating electricity by utilizing various sources such as renewable energy and traditional fuels.
It is due to the utility provided by the ORC systems that Uzbekistan would like to cooperate with Turboden S.p.A so that electricity can be generated by exploiting associated petroleum gas (APG) and flare gases. This was reported in the Uzbek media as a reference to the draft resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers.
As of now, a memorandum of intent has been signed between Turboden S.p.A and the Ministry of Innovation Development. This lays the foundation for long-term cooperation between these parties for producing electricity through the utilization of associated and flare gases.
As part of a global partnership program to reduce the burning of associated gases, Uzbekistan shared (in April of 2015) that it hopes to end gas flaring by the year 2030. This was based on proposals made by both the United Nations and the World Bank.
According to Uzbekneftegaz, a state-owned holding company of Uzbekistan’s oil and gas industry, the annual amount of gas burned in flares is approximately one billion cubic meters. It also shared that the amount of gas being produced totals to 60 billion cubic meters.
In recent times, Uzbekistan has been improving its gas flaring problem. The country has successfully reduced its flaring by 3.5 billion cubic meters. This has been achieved through the construction of compressor stations and APG collection systems.