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Minister of Energy and Energy Industries Stuart Young, has said the Government is heartened by the positive outlook for the primary energy resources, particularly natural gas, given the energy sector’s influence on the local economy.

Young spoke as a participant in the 4th Annual GECF Workshop on the Promotion of Natural Gas Demand yesterday, where he stressed natural gas’ importance to Trinidad and Tobago’s economy as he noted the country produces approximately 600,000 barrels of oil natural gas per day with 90 per cent of those resources being from hydrocarbon production.

Young said, “The energy sector, through the monetization of oil and gas resources, currently contributes 30 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product and 80 per cent of our foreign exchange earnings. Resource audits of our oil and gas sector have confirmed that we possess significant oil and gas resources. We are currently about to embark on a series of bid-rounds onshore, in shallow water and in deep-water in order to exploit these resources. We are optimistic of successful bid rounds given our track record as a proven and world class hydrocarbon province”.

The workshop, which had the theme “To cement the role of natural gas in a low-carbon future,” is designed to spur serious discussion on the prospects for natural gas and its growing demand in new and niche sectors, including technological solutions for the development of blue hydrogen, the transportation sector and the role of small-scale LNG in reaching emerging and potential markets.

The workshop focused on the crucial environmental issues of reducing carbon and methane emissions as it relates to the natural gas industry, and the collaborative strategies that market players can implement to strive for net-zero emissions as the event’s theme “To cement the role of natural gas in a low-carbon future” played a central role in the discussion.

Minister Young noted natural gas is the fastest growing fossil fuel due to environmental concerns, air quality issues, coal-to-gas projects, economic development, and population growth since natural gas is expected to be the only hydrocarbon resource to increase its share in the energy mix, growing from 23 per cent in 2019 to 28 per cent in 2050.