New Technologies Reduce Environmental Impacts
Flare technology reduces emissions – In south Texas, we replaced production/emergency flares with optical camera-controlled air-assisted flares in our Eagle Ford operations. When installing these flares, we implemented additional piping modifications to increase gas recovery and significantly reduce gas volume being sent to the flares. Additionally, we retrofitted all Eagle Ford permanent flares with thermocouple for pilot temperature monitoring, which allows us to monitor and ensure flares are continuously lit.
Gas conversion filter reduces emissions – In coordination with Noble Midstream Partners, Noble Energy is piloting the use of a gas conservation filter to reduce emissions from our oil production tanks in the Permian Basin. We have contracted with a third party to use the filters, which work on an absorption principle, along with a stripping agent to reduce volatile organic compound (VOC) and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality granted us approval to test the use of these filters to reduce tank VOC and GHG emissions as an alternative to flaring.
Tier 4 engine lowers NOx and Particulate Matter emissions – We use certified Tier 4 engines for completion operations in Texas as part of our work to lower emissions and comply with EPA standards. EPA Tier 4 emissions standards were phased in between 2008 and 2015 engine model years based on specific horsepower ranges. Overall the goal for Tier 4 is to lower NOx and particulate matter emissions by approximately 60 percent by integrating new technologies such as exhaust gas aftertreatment, catalytic particulate filters, and NOx absorbers. These technologies lower emissions while increasing efficiency and thus reduce maintenance cost and operational downtime.