Former Energy Minister says shut down of four Point Lisas plants worrying

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Former Energy Minister says shut down of four Point Lisas plants worrying

Former energy minister Kevin Ramnarine said the shut down of four plants on the Point Lisas Industrial Estate was worrying.

Four plants have been shut down following a safety incident at an offshore production facility operated by Woodside Energy.

Ramnarine said it comes at a time when the estate has been going through curtailments and is another blow to Point Lisas.

He said: “When these things happen it puts a lot of stress on the plants because these are process plants that take time to ramp up and they take time to be taken down. A lot of stress is put on the reformers and then stress on the workforce in Point Lisas.”

The Energy Ministry has not provided a time frame for when the gas will be returned online.

According to Ramnarine, with the plants down (two methanol and two ammonia plants), this means less product to export, and the country loses foreign exchange and tax revenue.

“It also puts a cloud over the Point Lisas Industrial Estate. One of the things we have to recognise is that these companies have customers all over the world and those customers expect their products on time. It also puts a stress on those relationships that those companies have with their international customers,” he said.

He said that T&T has been less than three billion mmscf/d going on over two years.

“We have a serious problem when it comes to natural gas production and it has become acute in the last three years. We are now back to 2003. Almost 20 years back in time,” he said.

“I am not seeing any type of let up in this scenario until the manatee field is brought into production which is about 2027-2028. The question is what is going to happen to T&T in the next four years? Can Point Lisas and Atlantic LNG survive the next four years?”