Global Flaring Intensity by Country

This data-file tabulates global flaring intensity in 16 countries of interest: in absolute terms (bcm per year), per barrel of oil production (mcf/bbl) and as a contribution to CO2 emissions (kg/boe).

Flaring intensity has reduced by c20% in the past quarter-century, from 0.25mcf/bbl and 12.5kg of CO2/bbl in the early 1990s to 0.2mcf/bbl and 10kg/bbl in 2019. However, total flaring rose 3.5% YoY in 2019 and is now flat on 2009, accounting for c300MTpa of global CO2 emissions. This is 1/6th of total oil industry CO2.

Industry leaders, with the lowest flaring include Saudi Arabia and the US. Laggards include West Africa, North Africa, Iran/Iraq and Venezuela (which has shown the worst deterioration in the database, since the late 1990s).

LNG’s positive role in reducing flaring stands out from the data. LNG exports were 94% correlated with Nigeria’s flaring reduction since NLNG started up in 1999. Angola has also reduced flaring by 80% since 1998, with Angola LNG “starting up” in 2013. Finally, Equatorial Guinea now has 80% lower flaring than its neighbor, Gabon, since starting up EGLNG in 2007.

Should the shale rigs switch to gas-fuel?

We estimate that a dual-fuel shale rig, running on in-basin natural gas would save $2,300/day (or c$30k/well), compared to a typical diesel rig. This is after a >20% IRR on the rig’s upgrade costs. The economics make sense. However, converting the entire Permian rig count to run on gas would only absorb c100mmcfd: not much of a dent in c1bcfd of flaring, as 2020 gas bottlenecks bite. This model shows all our workings.

Copyright: Thunder Said Energy, 2022.