City faces acute gas shortage

Demand for fuel has surged with drop in mercury


Our Correspondent December 17, 2020
PHOTO: FILE

LAHORE:

A natural gas demand has increased following a drop in the mercury level, the acute gas shortage is being witnessed in almost all areas of the provincial capital and urban areas across the province.

Speaking to The Express Tribune, various citizens complained about low gas pressure and suspension of supply. A resident of Township, Muhammad Azam, highlighted that there was no gas in his neighbourhood from the past couple of days.

“Earlier, the gas pressure was low during mornings and evening but now there is no gas in pipes. We have complained to the Sui Northern Gas Pipelines (SNGPL) at the company’s helpline but nobody listened to our complaint,” he lamented.

Another citizen, Khurram Habib, said most people in his neighbourhood were using compressors or pumps to suck gas from the pipeline which has further worsened the situation.

“Almost all residents have procured LPG cylinders or shifted themselves to alternate fuels because gas utility company is not paying attention to consumers complaints,” he maintained.

Similar complaints were made by several other consumers who have to suffer owing to the shortage of basic utility. A citizen pointed out that the government has already suspended gas supply to CNG stations and some industries but it still fails to provide natural gas to domestic consumers.

“We have to buy loaves from tandoors as there is no flame in the stoves,” he indicated.

In a recent meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE), it was disclosed that acute gas shortage was expected in the country from mid-December to end-January as the gap between gas demand and supply would touch around 2 billion cubic foot per day (BCFD).

Contrary to the current situation in urban centres, the cabinet committee was informed that there would be no gas load-shedding for domestic consumers and export-oriented industry. However, the situation has already worsened in the cities. Official data indicates that the country has a total supply of gas, including imported RLNG, of around 4.5 BCFD during the winter season, while demand would soar to 6 BCFD.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 17th, 2020.

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