At present, many kinds of fuel are used for Thailand’s electricity generation. Among them, natural gas is the most commonly used whereby its proportion is 62.87% of total fuel consumption including coal, renewable energy, bunker oil and diesel. “LNG” is a kind of natural gas which is used for electricity generation.

         Liquefied Natural Gas or LNG’s main composition is methane. It is converted to be a liquid state by a cooling process at -160 °C. In the liquid state, the volume of gas is reduced for 600 times for transportation convenience. Therefore, LNG is consistent with Thailand’s current situation that requires higher volume of natural gas.

         According to Thailand Power Development Plan (PDP 2015), the volume of natural gas from the Gulf of Thailand and Myanmar becomes lower continually. The major cause is that their proven reserves in accordance with contracts are decreased. The natural gas from such sources has been used for over than 50 years as fuel for electricity generation, vehicles and heating systems in plants in the industrial sector. Subsequently, Thailand has to increase unceasingly the volume of imported natural gas.

         LNG Situation in Thailand Led to EGAT’s FSRU Project

         FSRU stands for a Floating Storage and Regasification Unit. It refers to a floating station storing and regasifying liquefied natural gas to its original gaseous state. The FSRU project is operated to create a long-term and stable supply of natural gas as well as accommodating fuel imported from aboard. Liquefied Natural Gas or LNG transported by a LNG carrier to the destination harbor will be transferred to FSRU where LNG is regasified and delivered via pipelines to terminal points.

         Currently, Thailand is utilizing natural gas derived from the Gulf of Thailand and imported from neighboring countries. The natural gas in the Gulf of Thailand is lessened; however, the industrial sector’s demand of gas is growing. It is expected that from 5 million tons per year in the present, the demand of gas will become 22 million tons per year in 2036. The proportion of LNG will be increased from 7% to be 70% of natural gas used within the country. As gas concession renewal is still obscure, the country cannot avoid importing a higher volume of LNG. Nonetheless, acquisition of fuel cannot be done within a day; it requires planning and development process for several years ahead. In other words, we are having electricity for consumption today because fuel acquisition as well as electricity production and transmission processes were wellprepared many years ago.

         Due to the recent situation; there was a meeting resolution of the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) which adopted principles of natural gas business competition. The ERC, then, assigned Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) to procure LNG from new providers as well as undertaking the FSRU operations.

         EGAT’s FSRU comprises 3 projects:

         1. The Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU) which features similarly to a ship where LNG is stored and regasified before being transferred via pipeline to power plants. The highest volume of LNG that the FSRU is able to receive is 260,000 cubic meters.

         2. The FSRU Harbour Project which is an infrastructure anchoring the FSRU to float at the same position in order to accommodate the LNG Carrier (LNGC).

         3. The Pipeline Project for transferring natural gas from the FSRU to South Bangkok Power Plant. Its length is 60 kilometers approximately.

         EGAT and Its First LNG Transfer under the FSRU Project

         With regard to the country’s preparedness for fuel supply and long-term supply security of natural gas as mentioned in the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC)’s meeting resolution, ERC appointed Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) to operate the FSRU project, where its site is at the upper part of the Gulf of Thailand, to accommodate imported LNG for 5 million tons per year approximately. 3 million tons of LNG will be transferred to South Bangkok Power Plant and another 2 million tons to North Bangkok Power Plant. Moreover, this project is scheduled to be able to transfer natural gas to its existing pipeline network in 2024.

         Progress of the FSRU Project at Present

         EGAT shall prepare EIA Report (Environmental Impact Assessment Report), press and public relations event to clarify details of the project to relevant agencies and persons as well as 2 public hearings. The first hearing will be held on November 22 - 25, 2017 at Samut Prakan City Hall. All activities will be done in accordance with a reporting process. A full content version of EIA Report will be presented to Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning. The EIA Report preparation process and feasibility of the project are expected to be completed within 2018.

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