Natural gas development presents tremendous benefits that dramatically improve air quality through increased use of clean-burning fuel in power generation, home heating, transportation and manufacturing. Natural gas – or methane predominantly – produces about half of the carbon emissions of coal when used to generate electricity and is a key component for reaching the Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA”) emissions targets. Since 2005, Natural gas production increased 42%, yet methane emissions from natural gas production decreased almost 1% during that same time period.
As a percentage of Range’s production, our methane emissions make up only 0.0379% of our total annual production. Further information is below.
Recent studies show that the emissions from natural gas development do not cause any air-related health issues to surrounding areas and do not create ambient air pollution conditions where adverse health impacts would be expected, if presented.
Innovation is one of Range’s core values, which includes the consistent advancement and implementation of specific best practices in the field of emissions monitoring and reduction technologies in various phases of our operations. For a list of specific technologies and practices utilized by Range please click here. Importantly, Range’s emissions per unit of production are decreasing as Range improves and enhances well site technologies. Some of Range’s key innovations include:
- When practicable and safe, the methane gas resulting from drilling operations is captured and combusted. During hydraulic fracturing operations, natural gas is captured and used as a fuel source for the operations - reducing emissions and costs.
- Range was an early adopter of the Reduced Emissions Completions (“REC”) standards before they were mandated in the federal regulations.
- While the gas well sites are in operation, Range employs a robust leak detection and repair program to reduce emissions from its sites.
- Range’s facilities engineering team performs an annual review of our core operations to look for ways to reduce emissions, improve efficiency, and optimize technology and facility performance.
Range discloses its emissions totals under federal and state law, including the EPA’s Subpart W, Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program. This program requires all petroleum and natural gas developers to report all defined operating areas with emissions over 25,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases per year (expressed as carbon dioxide equivalents). Range also complies with state-specific reporting requirements in all states in which it operates, including the emissions reporting requirements set forth by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality. A summary of all company-wide emissions as carbon dioxide equivalents and as methane are provided below.
*Note: EPA changed the multiplier for computing methane emissions in terms of CO2-equivalents to a multiplier of 25 for 2013 and 2014 compared to a multiplier of 21 in prior years.
**2015 data will be available in spring 2016.
Summary of Emissions
From 2013 to 2014, Range's average daily production increased by 24%, and we are proud that during that same period our total company-wide greenhouse gas emissions for the year decreased by 21%. Progressions such as enhanced mechanical designs, facility improvements, and high grading of assets with a continued focus in the Marcellus led to a reduction in company-wide emissions. This trend has been consistent despite Range’s continued production growth.