Brazilian state-controlled oil company Petrobras SA is taking measures to raise local production and imports of natural gas from Bolivia to supply thermoelectric plants during Brazil’s worst drought in decades, the company told Reuters.
Petrobras said these measures are likely to boost natural gas supply by 36% compared with its demand in the first quarter.
“Efforts come as demand has been rising, due to the National Electric Grid Operator (ONS) decision on the use of thermoelectric plants in the last quarter of 2020 and because of the growth in economic activity,” Petrobras said.
The company e-mailed Reuters in response to a question on measures it was taking to avoid a natural gas shortage.
Petrobras is also in talks with Bolivia’s YPFB to review gas contracts and increase supply to Brazil.
As Brazil is facing its worst drought in almost a century, the government has been working to guarantee energy security and avoid having to ration electricity this year.
Measures taken by Petrobras also come as operations at both its Mexilhao gas field and the Rota 1 pipeline will be halted for maintenance for 30 days, starting on Aug. 15.
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