According to people familiar with the situation, one of the most important natural gas pipelines in China, west east gas pipeline 3 (hereinafter referred to as "west east gas pipeline 3"), is expected to start construction this year. The whole project will probably cover ten provinces and cities in China. Its first station is still located in Xinjiang, the same as the first and second lines of west east gas pipeline, and part of the pipeline trend is parallel to the second line of west east gas pipeline. The total investment scale of the whole project is likely to exceed 100 billion yuan, and the gas source is still in Central Asia.
Second and third line or parallel
At present, more than 100 million households and 400 million urban residents in China use natural gas.
At present, there are two natural gas pipelines in China, i.e. west east gas transmission line (hereinafter referred to as "West first line") and west east gas transmission line 2 (hereinafter referred to as "West Second Line"). In the west line, Xinjiang Tarim gas field is the main gas source, and the Yangtze River Delta is the main target market. The pipeline starts from Lunnan, Tarim, Xinjiang, in the West and ends at Baihe Town, Shanghai in the East, with a total length of about 4000 kilometers. The gas transmission capacity of the whole pipeline has reached 17 billion cubic meters of its designed gas transmission capacity.
The west east gas pipeline 2 is the first strategic channel project to introduce foreign (Central Asia) natural gas resources in China, with a total length of 4978 km and eight branch lines of 3726 km. On June 30, 2011, the whole line was put into operation. According to the data obtained from PetroChina, the gas transmission volume of the second west east gas pipeline will be 17 billion cubic meters this year and 30 billion cubic meters next year.
It is understood that the gas source of west east gas pipeline 3 is still from Central Asia, and it will start from Xinjiang as well as the west east gas pipeline 1 and west east gas pipeline 2. In Xinjiang, there may be 8 compressor stations in the west east gas pipeline 3, which is parallel to the west east gas pipeline 2.
Why two lines are parallel
The reason why part of the west east gas pipeline 3 is parallel to the west east gas pipeline 2 is that CNPC and other interested parties consider it convenient to manage the natural gas pipeline.
For example, in Horgos station of west east gas pipeline 2, dozens of employees are responsible for the operation and patrol of its electrical and mechanical facilities. Once the west east gas pipeline 3 is completed, it can also be managed by the same group of employees.
The west east gas pipeline 2 passes through various landforms such as desert, Gobi, hills, mountains and marshes, and some pipelines are also located in the life forbidden zone where people are rarely seen. The environment is complex and the construction is very difficult. Moreover, in the current situation of domestic land resources shortage, transportation and construction conditions are very difficult, the design, construction, construction supervision and later maintenance of natural gas pipelines will invest huge human and material resources. Therefore, if the west east gas pipeline 3 and the west east gas pipeline 2 are parallel, the whole investment cost and safety risk will also be reduced.
According to CNPC, part of the west east gas pipeline 3 will be directly delivered to the natural gas pipeline of west east gas pipeline 1 and west east gas pipeline 2 through the "connecting line". The designed annual capacity of the west east gas pipeline 3 is about 30 billion cubic meters.
It is rumored that the West third line may be divided into the west section (Xinjiang Horgos to Ningxia Zhongwei) and the east section (Ningxia Zhongwei to Fujian Province), involving Xinjiang, Gansu, Ningxia, Shaanxi, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Fujian and other provinces and cities, but the above statement has not been confirmed by PetroChina. According to a management of CNPC, the trunk line of the western third line may cover a total of ten provinces or autonomous regions.
The production of the west east gas pipeline 3 will probably alleviate the natural gas demand of many provinces and cities in China. In 2010, China's natural gas consumption has reached 110 billion cubic meters, and the domestic natural gas production has also reached 95 billion cubic meters. Relevant experts predict that this year's domestic natural gas consumption will continue to increase to 130 billion cubic meters, "the supply gap may be around 20% to 30%." A CNPC insider said.
The construction and operation of the west east gas pipeline 3 may also promote the reform of natural gas prices in China. At present, there are two gas sources of west east gas pipeline 2 and west east gas pipeline 3 in China, which come from Central Asia. The management of CNPC West Pipeline Company points out that there is an obvious price difference between domestic and foreign natural gas prices. At present, the ex factory price of natural gas in China is about 1.18 yuan / m3, and Xinjiang is the domestic gas source with lower price.
Central Asia's natural gas is linked to crude oil and other products, and adjusted quarterly or semi annually. Assuming that crude oil is 60 US dollars per barrel, the price of overseas natural gas to Horgos is 2.15 yuan per cubic meter. If the pipeline transportation fee is added, according to the current oil price, it is 1.7 yuan per cubic meter upside down. Since the west east gas pipeline 2 was put into operation, PetroChina has imported 11.4 billion cubic meters of Central Asian natural gas, with a loss of more than 10 billion yuan. If the west east gas pipeline 3 is opened, the supply of domestic natural gas will be supplemented and the price of domestic natural gas will be adjusted. However, the loss of China's oil import to Central Asia will also be increased.