Slow Jharkhand CGD growth blamed on ONGC

Vol 15, PW 21 (03 May 12) Midstream & Downstream

Not the growing Maoist insurgency, but lethargic ONGC.

That’s what Calcutta Compressions & Liquefaction (CC&L) is blaming for the slow development of the CGD sector in Bokaro and Dhanbad districts of Jharkhand state. “ONGC is too complacent to increase gas production from its (85-sq km) Jharia CBM block,” complains a CC&L source.

“They always make some excuse or the other. Sometimes they lack equipment at other times they don’t have a rig to drill wells.

” CC&L has a five-year agreement with ONGC to market Jharia CBM but is disappointed that effective gas production at the field has not crossed 15,000 cm/d from two wells since 2010. CC&L transports the gas in truck-mounted cascades or cylinders to local steel factories and ceramics manufacturers in Bokaro and Dhanbad districts.

“Three years ago ONGC told us it would be producing 50,000 cm/d from Jharia by now,” we hear. “They’re doing nothing to fulfil that commitment.

We’re paying around $6/mmbtu for CBM and don’t mind paying more if ONGC can increase production and assure consistent supplies.” ONGC has drilled and completed four wells in total but only two wells are together producing between 10,000 cm/d and 15,000 cm/d at any given time.

“CBM wells must be de-watered and worked over regularly,” we hear. “ONGC should have drilled and completed at least nine to maintain gas production during de-watering or work over.

” At ONGC’s nearby 95-sq km BK-CBM-2001/1 or Bokaro CBM block, the steering committee on February 2 approved an approximately Rs250cr ($50m) development plan to drill 155 CBM production wells over four and half years. “It’s good to hear the Bokaro development plan is approved,” adds CC&L.

“Let’s see if ONGC sticks to its deadlines.”