Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Marsden Point makes margin gains with greater natural use

Marsden Point makes margin gains with greater natural use

By Pattrick Smellie

July 4 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand's Marsden Point oil refinery is taking advantage of historically low wholesale prices for locally produced natural gas to improve its refining margins as electricity companies, in particular, continue to use far less gas than in the past.

Refining NZ said in a statement it had achieved a 12 US cents per barrel uplift in Gross Refining Margins in May and June, 1 US cent better than planned, and that the company was "well on the way" to achieving its targeted 11 US cents per barrel improvement from the natural gas initiative over the course of the financial year.

Gas was cheapest in winter months when the dairy industry, also a major gas user, was at its seasonal low point for milk processing.

Wholesale gas prices have plummeted in recent years as a combination of weak electricity demand and the commissioning of a string of renewable wind and geothermal energy projects have markedly reduced the use of natural gas and coal to produce electricity.

That trend has already seen Canadian methanol producer Methanex restart and expand its three Taranaki methanol production trains after mothballing them during much of the 2000s, when gas prices were high and shortages were feared.

The gas move is one of four initiatives the refinery is pursuing, targeting a 66 US cents per barrel improvement in gross refining margins, which have been low over the past year, owing to a global glut of refining capacity.

Using more locally produced natural gas to fire its plant allowed the refinery to send less of its own product "up the stack" as fuel for the refining process and "to send those fuels out the door (to market) instead," said Refining NZ spokesman Greg McNeill.

As a result, the refinery had increased gas use by 50 Terajoules to 570TJ's in May and June this year, compared with the same period last year.

The growth in gas use had also been assisted by improved access to the pipeline capacity, which has been a bugbear for would-be new industrial gas users in the upper North Island, with pipeline limitations causing bottlenecks.

"We understand that the renegotiation of power station gas supply contracts has improved available capacity on the pipeline," said Refining NZ chief executive Sjoerd Post.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Bad Day For Rope: Donaghys Job Losses Another Blow To Dunedin

The loss of 30 jobs from Donaghys rope and twine factory is yet another blow to the people and economy of Dunedin, says Dunedin South Labour MP Clare Curran. More>>

ALSO:

Oil: 2014 New Zealand Petroleum Summit

Simon Bridges: Our abundance of energy and minerals resources provides us with unique opportunities to build the New Zealand economy.

Over the past three years the Government has made significant changes to how the sector is regulated. More>>

ALSO:

WWF Report: Solutions In Reach; World Biodiversity Suffers Major Decline

Global wildlife populations have declined by more than half in just 40 years as measured in WWF's Living Planet Report 2014. Wildlife's continued decline highlights the need for sustainable solutions to heal the planet... More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: NZ Dollar Catches Breath After "Goldilocks" Slump

The New Zealand dollar edged up following its dramatic slump yesterday after the Reserve Bank confirmed speculation it intervened in the currency market last month and PM John Key suggested a “Goldilocks” level far lower than at present. More>>

ALSO:

Biosecurity: Kiwifruit Claim To Hold Officials Accountable For Psa

Kiwifruit growers have joined forces to hold Biosecurity NZ accountable in the courts for its negligence in allowing 2010’s Psa outbreak that devastated New Zealand’s kiwifruit industry and exports. Foundation claimants representing well ... More>>

ALSO:

Poison: Anglers Advised Not To Eat Trout In 1080 Areas

With the fishing season opening in just a few days (1 October 2014), anglers are being warned by the Department of Conservation(DOC) not to eat trout from pristine backcountry waters and their downstream catchments, where the department is conducting 1080 poisoning operations. More>>.

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand

Mosh Social Media
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news