NEWS IN BRIEF

Netherlands sticks to plan to close Groningen gas field by October

REUTERS –The Netherlands remains convinced of the need to close production at Groningen, once one of Europe’s largest gas fields, by October following earthquake risks which made it dangerous to keep operating, the Financial Times reported on Sunday citing a government official.

Mining Deputy Minister Hans Vijlbrief said he would stick to the previously announced timetable and aimed to shut the earthquake-prone gas field by Oct. 1, with the option of keeping it operational one more year if there was a shortage of gas in Europe after the winter.

 

HPCL to operate Vizag refinery at expanded capacity from end-June

 

REUTERS – State-run Hindustan Petroleum Corporation hopes to operate its Vizag refinery in southern India at an expanded capacity of 15m tonnes per annum from end-June, its chairman Pushp Joshi said on Sunday.

HPCL is in the process of commissioning units at the refinery, which previously had a capacity of 8.33 mtpa, he said, adding HPCL’s crude imports would rise in the next fiscal year from April as a result.

 

Eskom says worst power cuts over for now but urges less use

 

REUTERS – Calling all South Africans: Be sparing with electrical appliances after 4 p.m., think twice about whether you really need to boil so much water for that tea, and don’t even think about switching on your air conditioner after dark.

These were among the pleas state power company Eskom’s outgoing chief executive made to long-suffering consumers in Africa’s most industrialised nation on Sunday, as he reassured them recent maintenance work would ease some of the harshest blackouts in living memory.