[TheKoreaTimes] International Gas Union dismisses doubts on LNG
작성일 : 2019.07.12
By Nam Hyun-woo
International Gas Union (IGU) President Kang Joo-myung / Courtesy of IGU
Liquefied natural gas (LNG) is a "reliable tool" helping countries meet national and international climate targets when other clean energy technologies fail, a global organization of LNG producers said Tuesday.
The International Gas Union (IGU) said using natural gas instead of coal to generate electricity has "time and time again proved to significantly reduce air pollution," adding LNG's greenhouse gas emissions are half the amount of coal.
The IGU is a global organization of 164 gas corporations and associations. Korea has been the chair-country of the union since June 2018 and President Kang Joo-myung is its head.
The statement came after a report by research network, Global Energy Monitor (GEM), questioned the eco-friendliness and feasibility of LNG.
In the report, GEM claimed the world should not rely solely on LNG as a bridging tool for the global transition to renewable energy because the ongoing global gas expansion would create harmful methane emissions, which are roughly 30 times more harmful than carbon dioxide emissions.
It also stated that the falling cost of renewable alternatives would make many LNG expansion projects unprofitable in the long term and put much of the $1.3 trillion being invested in this global gas expansion at risk.
GEM assumes at least 202 LNG terminal projects are in development worldwide, including 116 export terminals and 86 import terminals. Approximately 75 percent of the export terminals are located in North America, while the Asia Pacific region is focusing on import terminals.
The IGU, however, said the analysis relied on "a highly disputed methane emissions assessment study," which was based on "incorrect" and "overstated" analyses that "used data collected from a portion of the U.S. supply chain and relied on top-down methodology."
The IGU cited an analysis by the International Energy Agency, which stated "natural gas emits between 45 percent 55 percent lower greenhouse gas emissions than coal when used to generate electricity."
"Technologies like carbon capture utilization and storage, renewable gases and hydrogen can help further minimize carbon content of natural gas, by as much as 90 percent," the statement read. "Natural gas infrastructure for that matter will continue to serve as a reliable medium for transporting energy to where and when it is needed."
Over the question of methane emissions, the IGU said the management of these was its top priority, because methane was a product that they didn't want to waste.
"Natural gas has a vital economic and environmental role in current and future energy systems, cleaning up urban air from toxic pollutants that stem from burning coal, wood and diesel oil," Kang said in a statement. "We firmly believe that abundant natural gas and the infrastructure that delivers it offer an enormous opportunity for mankind."