Coal is still the dominant source of energy in developing countries located in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and other developing countries. As an independent energy trading and supply company, Optus Energy knows how important natural gas energy is to increasing a country’s economic recovery and community development. According to a recent publication citing the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), 3 good reasons exist why wealthy nations should help finance natural gas discovery, development, and distribution in developing countries:
- Natural gas is safer and is comparatively low in carbon emissions.
- This energy source is often available in reserves in many developing regions.
- LNG and CNG are efficient in powering the industrial needs of poor nations.
While the company is committed to responsible and sustainable practices when it comes to partnering with various natural gas entities, we also understand the many challenges that underdeveloped nations face when attempting to switch from coal to natural gas as an energy source. At Optus, we practice a customer-centered approach that prioritizes safe, affordable, and effective energy practices across all its operations.
Importance of natural gas as an energy source
Natural gas can be an engine of growth for developing countries. Even a large developing country like India (the world’s sixth-largest economy) imports 85% of its oil and about half of its local requirements for natural gas are imported. And, while the continent of Africa is home to nearly 9% of the world’s gas reserves, countries within have a poor history of fossil CO2 emissions that must come into alignment with the Paris Agreement goal to limit global warming to 1.5°C.
Still, the economic importance of natural gas for developing countries cannot be understated. It is a critical and reliable fuel for manufacturing, cooking, and heating, and it features lower carbon dioxide emissions than coal, which is currently the predominant energy source.
Challenges faced by developing countries
Optus Energy realizes that the challenges are many for countries that already have an unstable economy and a limited infrastructure. There are also social and environmental issues such as the effect on wild lands and the disruption of wildlife habitats. The populations in these countries often have close spiritual ties to the land and depend heavily on the land and wildlife for sustenance.
There are economic risks too, especially since natural gas development depends upon a host of upstream, downstream, and horizontal partnerships. Often, developing countries are seen as “resource restricted” and must deal with extreme climates, soaring government debt, marginal logistics, and interrupted supply chains. This means that even if natural gas resources were pursued, any economic benefits would be extremely slow to materialize.
Optus Energy is committed to the future of natural gas
Optus leads with forward-thinking solutions based on innovation and sustainable practices. The company’s goal is to reduce emissions for the improvement of air quality and to support the economic development of the communities in which they operate. They also work to advance the management of regional supply chains, which are crucial to increasing natural gas sales in all regions.
For developing countries, these current challenges are exactly the kind of solutions that they hope to help alleviate. Entering a developing country and successfully promoting natural gas as an energy source may require the financing of wealthy nations to first create a natural gas infrastructure in those countries.
Additionally, care must be taken for developing countries that may be affected by government corruption or lack of energy guidelines and expertise. The result may not only be economically disastrous, but can also result in an energy system that does not adhere to anti-pollution best practices. O.E knows that this type of harm to the people and the land cannot be offset by profits or convenience.