Coal seam gas fugitive emissions

Posted by Des Menz in Three Fossils Coal-Oil-Gas

In recent years, the CSG industry has been galloping way ahead of the planning and regulatory processes.

This has been the case with fracking - hydraulic fracturing. But now, the federal government is tightening up on fugitive greenhouse gas emissions under the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting arrangements.

This Discussion Paper is aimed at improving measurement and estimation of fugitive gases from CSG exploration and production.

It's not before time. It's been known for years that methane can be emitted in large quantities from coal mining activities. And methane is upwards of 20 times more polluting as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide (CO2).

Climate Spectator had this to say about the issue of gas emissions and CSG.

"At present current requirements for measuring emissions do not differentiate between methods used for the estimation of emissions from conventional gas and methods used for coal seam gas (CSG) production.  Yet in practice, there are significant operational differences between conventional natural gas and CSG; most notably CSG production generally involves a higher density of well heads within a well field and CSG production may also involve a hydraulic fracturing process known as ‘fracking’ to improve the flow of gas out of wells. This latter aspect is important as there is overseas evidence to suggest that use of fracking techniques may generate more emissions than when conventional CSG extraction techniques are used."

Click on the image to get the Fact Sheet. It's illuminating.

CSG reporting

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