Extended Damages In Shale Leak

Extended Damages In Shale Leak

The extent of a natural gas well operated by Exxon that blew out in 2018 have released a lot more methane than previously believed. A study by a team of U.S and Dutch scientists concluded.

The study that was conducted used satellite imagery showed that the methane emissions following the blast topped what “the oil and gas industries of France, Norway and the Netherlands emit over a 12-month period.”

The well, in Belmont County, Ohio blew out in February 2018. It leaked for almost three weeks before it was plugged. Local communities had to be evacuated because of the release of natural gas into the atmosphere and environmental groups voiced concerns about the environmental damages. The results of the study suggest the damage may have been greater than expected.

Another study published a year later found the methane emissions in the United States had spiked because of what many like to call it the shale evolution. More specifically it was gas flaring during oil production in the shale patch that led to a strong increase of methane emissions from the upstream industry.

“Previous studies erroneously concluded that biological sources are the cause of the rising methane,” study author Robert W. Howarth from methane monitoring company GHGSat said. “The commercialization of shale gas and oil in the 21st century has dramatically increased global methane emissions.”

Access to satellite imaging capabilities is proving invaluable to those concerned about the role of methane in climate change.

“Our work demonstrates the strength and effectiveness of routine satellite measurements in detecting and quantifying greenhouse gas emission from unpredictable events,” the authors said. “In this specific case, the magnitude of a relatively unknown yet extremely large accidental leakage was revealed.” Source: www.worldoil.com