IEA Highlights Oil and Gas Operations

Aaron Foyer
Courtesy of IAS getawayy

The International Energy Agency (IEA) released its latest report which acts like a Christopher Nolan trailer: teasing us about what’s coming.

What happened: The IEA published a new assessment highlighting ways for the oil and gas industry to reduce the impact from its operations, with an opportunity to reduce its total emissions 60 percent by the end of the decade.

  • Given operating the oil and gas industry generates ~15 percent of global emissions, even halving that would be great.

Emissions from Oil and Gas Operations in Net Zero Transitions was put together ahead of the COP28 Climate Change Conference in Dubai later this year, as climate discussions increasingly include oil and gas leaders as partners to work on solutions.

Some key takeaways of the report:

  • There are five key levers for the industry to use: Tackling methane emissions, eliminating all non-emergency flaring, electrifying facilities, equipping key processes with carbon capture and storage (CCS), and expanding the use of low-carbon hydrogen.
  • Methane is bigger than King Charles’ orb: Addressing methane leaks is the single most meaningful opportunity for companies, amounting to almost half the IEA’s path… it’s also one of the cheapest. Upfront costs will mostly be recuperated through additional revenue from higher gas sales with a 75 percent reduction in methane costing an estimated $0.05 per barrel of oil equivalent.
  • CCUS gets the nod: Over $100 billion of spending is needed between now and 2030 on carbon capture, mostly in the oil value chain, though policies are still needed to boost investment.

The Paris-based IEA acknowledges its reports are not forecasts, but instead insights and tools that can be used to meet the energy demands of the future. Many of the solutions listed essentially pay for themselves, making the first steps to greening the oilfield easier.

Read the report: Emissions from Oil and Gas Operations in Net Zero Transitions