Major oil and gas companies set carbon emissions goal to address climate change

 

Paul Takahashi July 16, 2020 houstonchronicle.com/business/energy

 

A dozen of the largest energy companies in the world have agreed to lower the emissions rate of their oil and gas production to address climate change.

The Oil and Gas Climate Initiative, an international consortium of CEOs heading 12 energy companies including Chevron, Exxon Mobil and Occidental Petroleum, on Thursday announced a plan to reduce the carbon emissions rate of members’ combined upstream oil and gas operations, cutting the output by 36 million to 52 million tonnes per year by 2025. The reduction, the group said, is equivalent to the carbon emissions from the energy use of 4 million to 6 million U.S. homes.

“This is a big step among a number of steps we have taken,” said Bob Dudley, OGCI chairman and former BP CEO. “It’s quite rare for companies in any industry, whether it’s manufacturing or drugs or steel to work together on climate change. This was truly a collective effort.”

Facing increasing scrutiny over their role in climate change, energy companies have set emissions goals and are investing millions of dollars in new technologies, such as carbon capture, to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. OGCI’s 12 member companies, which produce 30 percent of the world’s oil and gas, collectively invest more than $7 billion each year in low-carbon solutions.  The group includes BP, Chevron, CNPC, Eni, Equinor, Exxon Mobil, Occidental, Petrobras, Repsol, Saudi Aramco, Shell and Total.

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New Mexico proposes crackdown on oil and gas industry's methane emissions

July 21, 2020

(Reuters) - New Mexico this week proposed rules that would require its oil and gas industry to capture at least 98% of its emissions of the powerful greenhouse gas methane by 2026, a standard it said would be among the strongest in the nation.

The proposal, announced by state officials on Monday after consultations with industry, would impact drillers in New Mexico’s portion of the Permian Basin oil hub where production has surged in recent years.

“The draft rules lay out an achievable but ambitious timeline and leaves room for innovation in the oil and gas industry, incorporating key feedback received throughout the process,” said New Mexico Oil Conservation Division Director Adrienne Sandoval.

Other states have also implemented plans to cut methane emissions, including Colorado and Pennsylvania. The Trump administration, meanwhile, has reversed Obama-era regulations seeking to slash the emissions, calling them unnecessary and harmful to development.

Environmental groups welcomed the New Mexico proposal.

“Governor Lujan Grisham’s proposal is a critical step but loopholes for low producing wells must be closed to ensure we meet her commitment to create nation-leading methane waste and pollution rules,” said Barbara Webber, executive director of advocacy group Health Action New Mexico.

The New Mexico Oil and Gas Association did not say if it supported the proposals but said its members will continue providing technical expertise to the state.

New Mexico is seeking public comment on the proposal before finalizing it.

The Environmental Defense Fund said New Mexico’s drilling industry emits approximately a million metric tons of methane a year. That is the climate equivalent of 5.4 million cars, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

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