About 80% of Iranian power plants use natural gas as fuel: Minister
Minister of Energy Reza Ardakanian said Iran is currently supplying natural gas to four in every five of its power plants, on par with major economies in the world and in line with a government policy to reduce pollution and increase the exports of valuable liquid fuels.
According to Press TV, on Tuesday he said that Iran is now fourth in the world behind the US, Russia and Japan considering the share of natural gas burnt in power plants to generate electricity.
He said many of the generating stations have been connected to the national gas network in recent years as Iran has seen its natural gas output surge to over 1 billion cubic meters (bcm) per day.
Reports last year suggested that Iran had increased its supply of gas oil, a valuable fuel used in power plants, to foreign customers as the country was seeking to find a way round the US sanctions targeting its crude exports.
Those reports showed that exports of up to $200 million per month of gas oil and other liquid fuels had become possible by supplying natural gas to power plants.
Ardakanian said that Iran would economize the use of gas for electricity generation in the upcoming years by continuing to introduce combined-cycle systems in its thermal power plants where exhaust heat from burning gas is used to raise steam for extra power generation.
He said more than a third of Iran’s total electricity production capacity, some 30 gigawatts (GW), is currently generated through such combined-cycle systems.
That, according to the minister, has helped prevent the use of around 0.25 bcm per day of natural gas that could have been burnt in the power plants.