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posted by CoolHand on Tuesday January 12 2016, @09:21PM   Printer-friendly
from the out-of-control-gas dept.

According to satellite data estimates, 350 million tons of natural gas were wastefully burned at the wellhead in 2012, about 3.5% of worldwide natural gas production. To put this into perspective, this amount of natural gas could provide electrical power to the entire continent of Africa. The CO2 emissions from natural gas flares are roughly equivalent to 10% of all CO2 emissions of the European Union.

The problem, as you might surmise, is the handling and transportation of the natural gas produced as a by-product of oil wells in areas without the infrastructure to handle gas. In addition, some gas produced as oil by-product has relatively low levels of methane. Russia flares more natural gas than any other nation, followed by Iraq, Iran, Nigeria, Venezuela, Algeria, and the United States.

The World Bank is trying to stop all routine flaring of natural gas by 2030. North Dakota and New Mexico are taking steps to reduce gas flares.

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  • (Score: 2) by frojack on Wednesday January 13 2016, @07:53PM

    by frojack (1554) on Wednesday January 13 2016, @07:53PM (#289242) Journal

    Yes, of course the heated them, and supplied electrical power, and probably from their own gas. (I really don't know about how they generated power, but I suspect it was a gas burning internal combustion gen-set).

    But the fact that they flared 24/7 should have been your clue that they need to get rid of way more gas than they could use for those purposes.

    And the fact that they don't find a way to sell that gas by piping it somewhere suggests the economics just aren't there. Why else would evil-oil-corp pass on taking a profit?

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  • (Score: 2) by RedGreen on Wednesday January 13 2016, @09:23PM

    by RedGreen (888) on Wednesday January 13 2016, @09:23PM (#289276)

    "Why else would evil-oil-corp pass on taking a profit?"

    Too God damn cheap to spend the extra money/same old way of doing things/not invented here syndrome, take your pick.

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