Satellite quantification of oil and natural gas methane emissions in the US and...

Shen, L., R. Gautam, M. Omara, D. Zavala-Araiza, J. D. Maasakkers, T. R. Scarpelli, A. Lorente, D. Lyon, J. Sheng, D. J. Varon, H. Nesser, Z. Qu, X. Lu, M. P. Sulprizio, S. P. Hamburg, and D. J. Jacob (2023), Satellite quantification of oil and natural gas methane emissions in the US and Canada including contributions from individual basins, Atmos. Chem. Phys., doi:10.5194/acp-22-11203-2022.

We use satellite methane observations from the Tropospheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI), for May 2018 to February 2020, to quantify methane emissions from individual oil and natural gas (O/G) basins in the US and Canada using a high-resolution (∼ 25 km) atmospheric inverse analysis. Our satellite-derived emission estimates show good consistency with in situ field measurements (R = 0.96) in 14 O/G basins distributed across the US and Canada. Aggregating our results to the national scale, we obtain O/G-related methane emission estimates of 12.6 ± 2.1 Tg a−1 for the US and 2.2 ± 0.6 Tg a−1 for Canada, 80 % and 40 %, respectively, higher than the national inventories reported to the United Nations. About 70 % of the discrepancy in the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) inventory can be attributed to five O/G basins, the Permian, Haynesville, Anadarko, Eagle Ford, and Barnett basins, which in total account for 40 % of US emissions. We show more generally that our TROPOMI inversion framework can quantify methane emissions exceeding 0.2–0.5 Tg a−1 from individual O/G basins, thus providing an effective tool for monitoring methane emissions from large O/G basins globally.

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Carbon Cycle & Ecosystems Program (CCEP)
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