Natural Gas is a Health Issue, an Environmental GHG, and an Economic Dilemma

by Duane Nichols on March 27, 2020

Global natural gas flaring reaches 4.6 Tcf in 2019

From a Report of GlobalData, Kalanish Energy, March 23, 2020

Oil and gas producers have flared over 4.6 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of natural gas globally in 2019, foregoing as much as $24 billion in revenues.

The estimate released by analytical company GlobalData is based on European gas benchmark prices.

A study found that some of the major oil producing countries in the world accounted for over 80% of the total associated gas flared last year. These include: Iraq, Iran, Russia, the U.S., Venezuela, Nigeria, Libya, Indonesia, Angola and Algeria.

“Key countries in the world flared more than 3.5 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in 2019, which constituted more than $9.5 billion in foregone revenue – when priced at U.S. Henry Hub gas prices – and over $19 billion when priced at UK NBP prices,” said analyst Soorya Tejomoortula.

Flaring in the U.S. and Iraq have risen recently on the back of higher crude oil production. But countries such as Nigeria and Russia have managed to reduce flaring thanks to tougher regulation.

In Nigeria, operators have increased the use and re-injection of associated gas. In Russia, companies such as petrochemical SIBUR are using this gas as feedstock for their plants.

Tejomoortula added that utilizing associated gas is one of the most effective means to reduce flaring, and benefits both the upstream producers and the environment.

The analyst said that oil and gas producers can enhance oil recovery with re-injection of gas into wells; feed power generation and petrochemical operations; use in small-scale solutions including mini gas-to-liquids (GTL) plants, mini liquefaction plants and compressed natural gas (CNG) plants.


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