January 5, 2015
A report released November 20, 2014 by the Natural Resources Defense Council and other environmental groups says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) can “fulfill its duty under the Clean Air Act to cut in half methane pollution from the largest industrial source—the oil and gas industry—in just a few years, using common sense standards based on available, low-cost control measures for a targeted set of pollution sources.”
The report’s key findings and recommendations include:
- Regular leak detection and repair programs can reduce methane pollution by an estimated 1,700,000 to 1,800,000 metric tons per year. EPA standards should require oil and natural gas companies to control leaks from all equipment at well pads, gas processing plants, compressor stations, and large aboveground distribution facilities by regularly carrying out these inspections.
- Cleaning up older equipment—compressors and gas-driven pneumatic equipment—with proven technologies and practices can reduce methane pollution by an estimated 1,200,000 to 1,350,000 metric tons per year. Current EPA standards require these technologies and practices for some new compressors and gas-driven pneumatic equipment in select segments of the industry, while states like Colorado extend some requirements to existing sources. EPA should set additional standards that require the same practices for all such equipment—both new and existing—throughout the industry.
- Capturing natural gas that would otherwise be released from oil and gas wells can reduce methane pollution by an estimated 260, 000 to 500,000 metric tons per year. EPA standards should require well operators to capture this gas and sell it or use it on-site, instead of releasing it or flaring it.
What this means to you
Numerous reports indicate EPA is looking to cut oil & gas methane emissions through increased leak detection, cleaning up older equipment including compressors and by capturing released gas for use on site or for sale.
MIRATECH can help
Contact MIRATECH to discuss emission compliance solutions for your operation.