EDF Aerial Survey Detects Major Methane Plumes from Permian Basin Operations

The research conducted by EDF via helicopter during the first two weeks of November found that 14% of the methane plumes detected in the Permian Basin were the result of malfunctioning flares.

Valerie Volcovici, Reuters

Methane continues to escape at a high rate from oil and gas operations in the Permian Basin, according to an aerial survey released Dec. 14 that detected major methane plumes from 40% of 900 sites that were measured.

The latest research conducted by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) via helicopter during the first two weeks of November found that 14% of those plumes were the result of malfunctioning flares.

Researchers also found that at one-third of smaller wells significant emissions persisted for days. The aerial survey of the largest U.S. oil field showed that leaks arose from different pieces of equipment at different times.

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