Vol 3, PW 12 (07 Jul 99) News in Brief

Around 26 producing gas wells in the Cauvery Basin in Tamil Nadu are lying idle because the local electricity board is delaying construction of gas-fired power plants.

CP Saha, ONGC regional director, said the region has the potential to produce 1m cubic metres of gas a day (cm/d) but produces just 200,000 cm/d because of poor offtake. In India, electricity boards are given preference over private consumers for gas linkage but delay in offtake often means the gas is wasted.

Saha said ONGC was losing Rs150cr ($35.7m) per annum in revenue as a result. He adds that Periyapatnam, Ramanavalasai and Perungulam in an around Ramanathapuram show signs of immense gas potential and that ONGC is planning to drill 15 wells in the area to delineate gas prospects.