MGA advocates expanded role for natural gas

Hazli Sham Kassim

KUCHING: In support of the government’s efforts to achieve Malaysia’s COP21 targets, the Malaysian Gas Association (MGA) is advocating for the expanded use of natural gas, a clean, efficient and cost-effective fuel, to reduce the country’s carbon emissions and drive social, environmental and economic progress.

Malaysia’s natural gas industry reported a cumulative contribution to the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) amounting to 4.2 per cent, comprising of domestic sales of natural gas at US$2.45 billion and exports in the form of liquified natural gas (LNG) valued at US$10.56 billion in 2015.

Commenting on the industry, MGA president Hazli Sham Kassim said that given that natural gas is the cleanest burning fossil fuel, the association believes natural gas can play a prominent role in ensuring the country achieves its COP21 promise by supporting the expansion of renewable energy while simultaneously driving Malaysia’s economic progress.

“With the government’s commitment to becoming a low carbon economy, natural gas is the perfect partner for renewables. Gas-fired turbines have quick start-up and short ramp-up times, and will be flexible enough to address the intermittencies of renewable power generation, especially solar PV.

“Natural gas also offers integrated innovative gas solutions for the country’s long-term energy mix, be it as feedstock for industries, fuel for heating or combustion as well as for transportation, at significantly lower environmental and economic cost,” he added.

As the lead advocate for the nation’s natural gas industry, MGA is committed to enhancing awareness on the benefits of natural gas and plays a prominent role in promoting engagement, discourse and dialogue amongst stakeholders to facilitate growth of the sector and expand the usage of natural gas.

Elaborating further, Hazli said that over the past three decades, MGA has been the focal point for organisations from across Malaysia’s natural gas value chain, providing the industry a credible voice for engagements with ministries, regulators, policy makers and other stakeholders, both domestically and internationally.

“MGA is an active participant in national level taskforces, committees and workshops, as well as representing the country internationally at global platforms such as the recent World Gas Conference held in Washington DC.”

In June, MGA lead the Malaysian delegation to the World Gas Conference (WGC 2018), organised by the International Gas Union (IGU), with MGA members participating in several keynote and panel sessions. MGA is a charter member of the IGU, a worldwide non-profit organisation with members from more than 90 countries, representing over 97 per cent of the global gas market. Malaysia held the IGU presidency from 2009 till 2012, which culminated in the hosting of the prestigious World Gas Conference 2012 in Kuala Lumpur.

The association’s initiatives also include those targeted to industry through talks, trade exhibitions, collaborations with other industry associations, academia; Energy Efficiency Programme (EEP) for secondary school students and Practical Environmental, Safety and Industrial Guidance for Student Engineers (PRESTIGE) for university students as well as the general public focused on awareness campaigns and other publications.

Additionally, MGA is also at the forefront of championing equal opportunities for women in the energy sector through the newly formed Malaysia Women in Energy (MyWiE), which aims to drive discussions and develop proposals to address the challenges faced by women in the energy sector.

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