Petroamazonas EP
Photo source: Petroamazonas EP




Reducing methane emissions from gas flaring with power generation facilities that generate electricity from associated gas


During oil production, natural gas is released from reservoirs together with oil. In places where governments and oil companies have made substantial investments to capture this gas much of it is used or conserved. In places with technical, regulatory, or economic constraints some this gas is burned, a process known as flaring. As a result, thousands of gas flares at oil production sites around the globe burn approximately 140 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually, causing more than 300 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) to be emitted to the atmosphere.

Flaring of gas contributes to climate change and impacts the environment through emissions of CO2, black carbon and other pollutants. It also wastes a valuable energy resource that could be used to advance the sustainable development of producing countries.

The oil and gas company Petroamazonas EP has committed to reduce flaring. The company is cooperating with the government of Ecuador on a major program to use gas that would otherwise be flared, to generate power in an environmentally sustainable way in the Amazonian region of Ecuador

The Power Generation and Energy Efficiency (OGE&EE) program consists of a cluster of 120 projects in an area covering 25,000 sq. km, 17 oil blocks, 56 oil fields and 66 facilities. The program has developed more than 208 megawatts (MW) of gas, crude oil, and gas/crude oil power generation facilities, 170 km of power transmission/distribution facilities and gas handling and transportation infrastructure to monetize gas that would otherwise be flared.

The program produces lower cost power that has less impact on the environment. The economic benefits are substantial with a net saving of $785 million and diesel savings totalling 468 million gallons. The environmental benefits are also considerable with a gas flaring reduction equivalent to 24.33 billion cubic of gas and a reduction of approximately 1.2 million tons of CO2.

For the over 192 local communities the program has provided reliable power, jobs, fibre optics connections, and infrastructure for lasting development.

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