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Ukraine Considers 8 Alternatives to Russian Gas

A liquified natural gas transport ship.

Ukraine's Finance Ministry on Friday published a list of eight paths to replacing its natural gas imports, an energy source that has been in peril since Russian gas giant Gazprom — previously the provider of half of Ukraine's gas – shut off deliveries last month.

"Each of the proposed courses may be developed subject to their feasibility in specific regions of Ukraine," the ministry said in a statement on its website.

Energy supply has preoccupied the Ukrainian government since Gazprom ceased deliveries of gas on June 16 following a series of failed price negotiations with Ukraine's state-owned gas company Naftogaz.

Acknowledging an impending energy crisis, the Ukrainian parliament on Friday passed in its first reading a law that could allow the government to tightly govern the energy sector in the case of limited gas supplies.

In the long term, the Finance Ministry's list recommends employing multiple energy alternatives to replace natural gas.

On the list is liquefied natural gas, or LNG, which could serve as "an alternative to Russian natural gas," the statement said. There are a number of outstanding issues, however, including locating  suppliers, allocating land for the construction of LNG terminals and attaining permission from Turkey to transit gas through the Bosphorus strait, it said.

The ministry also proposed employing a number of unconventional fuels, including biofuels, or fuels produced from conversions of biomass; coal-water slurry, a fuel consisting of fine coal particles suspended in water; and synthesis gas, or syngas, produced via the gasification of coal.

Two particular kinds of syngas received their own spots on the list: synthetic natural gas, an analogue to natural gas produced through the gasification of coal, and a form of synthetic gas to be used in the chemical industry.

Other proposed measures include increasing domestic oil and gas production via deep drilling in Ukraine's Dnieper-Donets basin – a particularly costly solution – and employing storage heaters, or electric heaters that store thermal energy at night.

See also:

Ukraine Passes BIll Allowing EU and U.S. to Invest in Gas System

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