Energy sector Poland: Industry key investment

Author / Editor: Robert Ocetkiewicz / Lisa Saller, Lisa Saller

Not only will the construction of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Świnoujście let the Polish energy self-sufficiency grow but it will also influence the Polish industry.

Polish LNG terminal is emerging in the Baltic coast city of Świnoujście. As early as the second half of the year it will supply gas to commercial consumers.
Polish LNG terminal is emerging in the Baltic coast city of Świnoujście. As early as the second half of the year it will supply gas to commercial consumers.
(Photo: Polskie LNG)

At the end of December last year, the first tests of the LNG terminal in Świnoujście, Poland, were concluded. The work on this extensive investment is coming to an end and will not remain without an effect on the industry. In February, the terminal is about to receive the second test LNG supply, and as early as this June it will be launched commercially. Not only is the project implementation going to strengthen the Polish energy self-sufficiency, but it will also let the country play a greater role in the entire gas transit across southern and eastern Europe.

Gallery

It is worth stressing, that so far Poland has only been able to import gas from the EU countries and Russia. Once the investment in Świnoujście has finished, not less than one-third of the gas used in Poland will have been derived from this Baltic coast city itself. According to the main investor, the Polskie LNG company, both private and business consumers will additionally receive 5 bln m³ of the liquefied natural gas annually. This is not all, though. There are plans to build another tank which will enhance the supplies by 2.5 bln m³. This forms an opportunity to the Polish industry.

LNG port and influence on industry

The construction of the terminal and the whole LNG port will have an enormous influence on the industry of the Polish state. The gas should start to be used not only for heating by Polish citizens, but also by power plants. These will be able to use the gas as fuel to supply important power facilities. It is done likewise in Japan, where the Yokohama power plant is fired by liquefied natural gas transported by tankers from Alaska.

Other application of natural gas for industry is cooling and rarefying the air in magnetogasodynamic (MGD) generators, for instance. The terminal can also be used preferably by the home and foreign refinery and petrochemical industry in the low-temperature facilities for fractionation of hydrocarbon gases. This is not all, though. During LNG regasification, the gas may be made use of in the low-temperature facilities for oxygen production. This may occur thanks to liquefied air rectification. In France, for example, an LNG terminal is beneficial for supplying fuel cells which generate electricity or heat.

Finally, how well companies will take the opportunities which from the second half of this year on will be given by the LNG terminal in Świnoujście will depend on themselves and their creative approach. The recent first tests showed that everything is going in a good direction. Moreover, taking into the account the fact that the construction of the terminal is bound to promote gas prices fall, there may be numerous various innovative projects in the industrial field in subsequent years.

Poland's strategic investment

The plans relating to the LNG terminal in Świnoujście originated many years ago. In 2008, the cabinet finally made a decision on the construction of the terminal and one year later the technical design was finished. This meant the terminal became Poland's strategic investment, both for the industry and for the whole economy.

The total number of such a type of terminals worldwide is over 100. They are most popular in Japan. In Europe there are only 23 of them, so Poland is gradually joining the elite group.

The entire project was formed in conformity to all EU standards while utilizing the latest technologies. As the main investor has remarked, the terminal is entirely safe for people and natural environment. The Polskie LNG company has added that in case of leakage, liquefied natural gas evaporates and rarefies in the air which minimises a negative impact on the surroundings.

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