Thursday, October 25, 2012
WASHINGTON - An updated survey by URS prepared for America's Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA) and the American Petroleum Institute (API) has found further reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas production.
The survey is an updated version of data first released in June. It shows that venting of methane into the atmosphere during liquids unloading is 93 percent lower than Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates and that methane emissions from well re-fracturing are 72 percent lower. Taken as a whole, methane emissions from natural gas production are at least 53 percent below EPA's estimates. This is the most comprehensive look to date at the issue, analyzing data from nearly 20 percent of all U.S. natural gas-producing wells-a sample size more than 10 times larger than EPA's.
"This report reinforces the importance of sound science and accurate data in our public dialogue about our energy choices as a nation," said Tom Amontree, Executive Vice President of America's Natural Gas Alliance. "Natural gas is an increasingly important component of America's clean energy future, economy and national security. The industry's commitment to safe and responsible development means people don't need to trade protection of air, land and water for economic advancement."
The survey is based on emissions from 91,000 wells operated by 20 companies distributed over a broad area of the United States. By contrast, EPA's data was derived from only 8,800 wells confined to specific areas not representative of the entire country. Recently the U.S. Energy Information Administration concluded that use of more natural gas in power generation has helped lead to the lowest level of greenhouse gas emissions since 1992.