A natural gas pipeline program is under construction in Ruzhou city, North China's Hebei province. [Photo by Yang Zengqiang/Dahe Daily]
Coal gas which has been inexorably linked with Ruzhou residents for more than two decades will finally exit those residents' lives.
Ruzhou will meet the transmission requirements of the East-West natural gas transmission project at the end of next June. It is expected that the majority of residents will say goodbye to coal gas and start to use high-efficiency,environmentally friendly natural gas by the end of next year.
Xu Jianzheng, the general manager of Ruzhou's Gas Company said that the natural gas era will arrive in Ruzhou, which will utilize the natural gas which originates from the East-West natural gas transmission project. The natural gas from Da’an town in Ruyang county will be imported into Ruzhou.
The invitation for bids of the Ruzhou natural gas transmission program was started in October. A gas company from Luoyang city in Henan province won the bidding.
The gas company promised Ruzhou Municipal Government it would complete the gas pipe network of the program by the end of next June, which can be seen as a milestone in meeting the requirements of the gas transmission.
Xu said, "The total length of the pipeline from Da'an town in Ruyang county to Ruzhou city will reach 30 kilometers. A gas station will be built in the northwestern part of Ruzhou city."
"If the program goes smoothly, residents in Ruzhou urban area will be able to use natural gas by the end of next year," added Xu.
Coal gas was officially launched in Ruzhou city in December of 1994. Around 200 to 300 households located along Zhanbei Street in Ruzhou's urban area were the first batch of residents who started to use coal-gas fires. After 20 years' development, a total of 36,000 households are using coal gas in Ruzhou now.
"Ruzhou was one of the pioneering county level cities which started using coal gas. After natural gas enters Ruzhou, the residents' living standards will be greatly improved," said Xu.
Coal gas has many limitations such as low purity, low caloricity, and the instability of the gas origin.
On the other hand, natural gas has many advantages such as high efficiency, a high environmental protective level, and high stability of the gas origin. Natural gas can be seen as a mark in the city's development.
Many residents have questions and considerations about the price of natural gas and are afraid that the price of natural gas will be higher than the price of coal gas.
Xu said that although the detailed price has not been decided yet, taking into consideration the natural gas price in nearby cities, the price of natural gas will not be much higher than the price of coal gas used for daily cooking.
For wall hanging stoves or other devices with high gas and power consumption, the spending will be higher than the spending on coal gas. The price of coal gas is less than one yuan (￠16) per cubic meter, while the price of natural gas will be as high as three yuan per cubic meter.
The implementation of the natural gas price will follow the tiered pricing policy set by the Henan Provincial Development and Reform Department, which means the more gas that households use, the greater the payment will be.
After natural gas reaches Ruzhou, the newly constructed neighborhood and suburban areas of Ruzhou city will enjoy gradual access to natural gas. Xu said that some of the newly constructed building complexes are facilitated with gas pipelines. In addition, the industrial areas in the southern part of Ruzhou will have access to natural gas.
Xu said that in order to use natural gas, ovens and gas meters should be replaced. The gas company will replace these devices for free. There will be no need for the residents to pay extra charges.