Press Statement on ” MGA Recognises Natural Gas as the Perfect Partner to Renewable Energy”

17th September 2019, Kuala Lumpur

The International Gas Union (IGU) identifies that natural gas enables clean energies as it supports variable renewable generation, enables broader use of biogas and facilitates power to gas. Given its versatility, natural gas currently supplies 22% of the energy used worldwide, and makes up nearly 25% of electricity generation.

The President of Malaysian Gas Association (MGA), Hazli Sham Kassim, who is also the Regional Coordinator for the International Gas Union (IGU), said, “Natural gas is the necessary tool for addressing the most pressing global energy challenges and will have a vital role in the sustainable energy future of the Asian region“.

Hazli Sham said this during his presentation at PowerGen Asia 2019, the largest annual conference and exhibition for power generation in the South East Asia region, held recently at the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

By 2040, Southeast Asia’s energy demand is expected to grow by almost 2/3 and this is equal to 1/10 of the global demand increase. South East Asia will also see more than 300GW of additional increase in power generation capacity within the same period.

“Reaching a sustainable and secure energy future will require a range of tools to ensure resiliency. Natural gas fired power generation will continue to play a central role as the most flexible generation with its inherent capability to respond quickly to the intermittency of variable renewable energy. In addition to its traditional role generating electricity as centralised utility, gas fired power generation is playing more significant future role as distributed power generation through cogeneration application”, said Hazli Sham.

Due to its reliable and flexible characteristics, natural gas has been Internationally recognised as the perfect partner to renewable energy (RE). In Malaysia, natural gas can play a similar and vital role in driving the growth of RE. Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change (MESTECC), through its 2019 Initiatives, strives to achieve 20 per cent renewable energy capacity mix by 2025. With most of the RE capacity expected to comprise variable renewable energy, in particular solar photo-voltaic, flexible base-load power generation plays an important role to ensure stable and sustainable supply of electricity to consumers.

Natural gas also enables flexibility of distributed power generation through cogeneration. The application of cogeneration at industrial and commercial facilities increases efficiency of energy conversion. Thesignificant increase in efficiency makes cogeneration a key and integral contributor in achieving the another MESTECC’s target of achieving 8% savings from Energy Efficiency (EE) by 2025.

Hazli Sham concluded his presentation by calling for a policy to include cost of externalities when considering the true cost of electricity generation. Hazli Sham explained, “Air pollution has high economic and societal costs, which need to be priced explicitly or through regulation. According to a case study performed in the Philippines, by including cost of carbon and associated cost on health impact, the cost of electricity generated from natural gas is at least 20% lower when compared to coal”.

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