|EDF Studies Says Methane Emissions 50 Percent Higher than EPA Estimates|
On July 7, the peer-reviewed scientific journal Environmental Science and Technology published a series of 11 papers on methane emissions from the oil and gas sector, sponsored by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF). The research found that methane emissions in the Texas Barnett Shale are 50 percent higher than estimated by EPA, and that at any given time, about 75 percent of methane emissions from Barnett Shale production sites come from dispersed sources, such as equipment leaks and tank venting. Sites with the highest proportion of methane emitted versus volume of gas production were referred to as “functional super-emitters.”
Twelve different research teams took measurements on an area including 40 processing plants, 275 compressor stations and 30,000 oil and gas wells. These studies, called the "Barnett Coordinated Campaign," are the latest in EDF's $18 million research series exploring the impacts of oil and gas emissions of methane, a greenhouse gas 84 times more powerful than carbon dioxide over a 20 year period.