Washington, July 27, 2023 — The World Bank today approved $300 million to help Bangladesh improve the efficiency of gas distribution and end-use through pre-paid metering systems for residential and industrial consumers and reduce methane emissions along the natural gas value chain.
The Gas Sector Efficiency Improvement and Carbon Abatement Project will address natural gas leakage and losses along the gas transmission and distribution network, reduce wastage in use by residential and industrial users, and strengthen network monitoring capabilities. It will install more than 1.2 million prepaid gas meters in Dhaka and Rajshahi Division. Among these, 1.1 million prepaid meters will be deployed in Greater Dhaka covering 54 percent of residential customers of Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company Limited, and 128,000 prepaid meters in Rajshahi division, covering the entire residential customer base of Pashchimanchal Gas Company Limited (PGCL). It will also pilot rolling out about 50 smart meters to larger industrial users to demonstrate the viability of smart meters to better monitor and manage gas use in the industrial sector.
The project will install a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) and Geographic Information System on PGCL’s network to improve gas flow monitoring and help reduce methane leaks. They will contribute to reduce greenhouse gas emissions with better monitoring in the gas network for identifying and repairing methane leaks.
“Improving energy efficiency will be important for Bangladesh to achieve its 2021 Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) commitment of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2030,” said Abdoulaye Seck, World Bank Country Director for Bangladesh and Bhutan. “The project will help cut down natural gas wastage in households and industries and reduce fugitive methane emissions in gas pipelines, which are often caused by leaks from gas production, processing, transmission, and distribution.”
Natural gas accounted for 68 percent of the country’s primary energy consumption in 2021. Methane leakages in the oil and gas value chain – which are 25 times more potent than CO2 at trapping heat in the atmosphere – amounts to an estimated 257 kilotons, which is roughly equivalent to 7.7 million tons of CO2.
“Bangladesh’s biggest source of greenhouse gas emission comes from the oil and gas sector,” said Sameh I. Mobarek, World Bank Senior Energy Specialist and Team Leader for the Project. “Prepaid gas meters and advanced monitoring systems will help optimize natural gas end-use, mitigate methane leakages and lead to lower gas bills for the households and industrial users.”
The project will finance technical assistance to detect CO2 and methane emission sources along the natural gas value chain and identify and prioritize opportunities to abate emissions in existing facilities and infrastructure. It will also help develop emissions monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) protocols and regulatory frameworks for sustained carbon abatement in the energy value chain that can then be implemented through investment with public and private climate financing.
The World Bank was among the first development partners to support Bangladesh. In its 50-year partnership with Bangladesh, the World Bank has committed over $40 billion in grants, interest-free and concessional credits to the country. Currently, Bangladesh has the largest IDA program in the world with a total of $15.6 billion of commitments to 53 ongoing projects.