Selected tag(s): Methane emissions

Methane Emissions from Oil & Gas are on the Rise, Confirm Latest EPA Data

rp_methane_378x235_4.jpgMethane emissions from the US oil and gas sector increased, according to new data finalized today by the Environmental Protection Agency. Sadly, the figures come as no surprise, based on preliminary numbers and plenty of other observations, both scientific and anecdotal.  No surprise unless you’re part of the industry’s public relations machine, which keeps insisting that up means down.

What is legitimately surprising is that this problem continues in spite of the many simple, proven and cost effective ways there are to fix it. And therein lies opportunity. Read More »

Posted in Methane, Natural Gas| Also tagged , | Read 1 Response

4 Reasons a National Methane Policy Will be Good for Business

rp_natgasworker-198x300.jpgAfter months of anticipation, the Obama Administration this month released its new methane emissions strategy – a plan that opens up new opportunities for industry writ large, and especially for operators that want to cut waste and get ahead.

The centerpiece of the strategy are imminent rules that will help us meet a new national goal to reduce harmful methane pollution from oil and natural gas operations by 45 percent by 2025.

But the rules also bring direct industry benefits. Here are four reasons the new methane emissions strategy is a boon, rather than bane, for America’s $1.2-trillion oil and gas sector:

1. It tackles $1.8 billion in annual waste and adds market certainty

Leaky infrastructure and unnecessary venting across the oil and gas value chain cost an estimated $1.8 billion in wasted product and lost revenue annually.

The new rules require companies to include up-to-date controls as they build out new and modified infrastructure, keeping gas in the pipeline while making new facilities more efficient. Read More »

Posted in General, Methane, Natural Gas| Also tagged , | Comments are closed

Verdict Is In—There’s Broad Support for Plan to Cut Methane Pollution

getty_dv626028_rfWhen the White House announced ambitious plans to cut methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 45 percent, EDF President Fred Krupp called it a landmark move. And according, to a recent poll, 66 percent of Americans agree that strong federal standards are needed to safeguard our air from methane pollution, which is responsible for about a quarter of today’s warming. The oil and gas industry– the largest industrial source of this climate pollutant–wastes enough unburned methane each year to heat six million homes.

The plan has drawn widespread support among opinion leaders as well as industry experts.

Read More »

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New Study Underscores Urgent Need to Reduce Methane Emissions from Natural Gas Operations

Steve-Hamburg_D4B8294_287x377You may have seen news reports about a new methane emissions study conducted by climate researchers from Harvard and seven other institutions and just published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).  The new paper provides an improved estimate of the total methane budget of the US – in other words, how much methane is being released into the atmosphere each year from all sources, including livestock and oil-and-gas production.

Based on analysis of nearly 5,000 air samples collected in 2007 and 2008 from ten communications towers located around the country, as well as 7,700 samples taken in those years from an aircraft monitoring program, the study finds that total methane emissions due to human activity were roughly 1.5 times greater at that time than previously estimated.  Emissions from livestock were roughly twice as high as previous estimates.  Emissions from oil-and-gas operations in Oklahoma and Texas were 2.7 times higher than estimated.

We are glad to see the methane issue getting the attention it deserves.  While EDF's work to deepen our understanding of current emissions continues, there’s no question about the need for regulation to measure and reduce these emissions.  In August, scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the University of Colorado (UC) at Boulder published a long-awaited paper on methane leakage in the journal Geophysical Research Letters that reported an alarmingly high level of methane emissions in the Uintah Basin of Utah — 6.2 to 11.7 percent of total production for an area about 1,000 square miles.  Read More »

Posted in Climate, Methane, Natural Gas| Also tagged | Read 1 Response
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