Data analyzed by the Colorado Oil and Gas Association (COGA) shows that methane emissions along Colorado’s Front Range are continuing to fall and that for years, producers in the state have been on the forefront of environmental protection.
According to a COGA press release, recent studies show that methane emissions have decreased significantly since 2015, in contrast to claims from anti-energy activist groups:
“Colorado’s Front Range methane emissions are down 72 percent from an earlier 2015 study, according to a new study of satellite data by a compilation of authors. The study reinforces satellite data collected for an earlier study by Ramboll, a leading environmental health consultancy on behalf of Weld County, which found that methane decreased 52 percent between 2013 and 2019.”
COGA President and CEO Dan Haley said that the new methane emissions measurements show that Colorado oil and natural gas companies are committed to clean and sustainable production:
“Colorado’s oil and natural gas workers continue to innovate and strive to position Colorado as a global leader in producing the cleanest energy molecules that we all need and use every day.”
Authors of the new methane study speculated that the drop in Colorado methane emissions might be a result of decreasing oil and natural gas production – but the data shows otherwise. According to production numbers reported by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Colorado’s oil production was in fact significantly higher from 2017 onwards than it was in 2015 and preceding years. In other words, Colorado is producing more energy while simultaneously reducing methane emissions.
Colorado has some of the strictest methane regulations in the country and was the first state in the country to implement methane emission rules for oil and natural gas production, which are responsible for reducing 60,000 tons of methane each year.
Strong regulations aren’t the only driver of lower methane emissions, and as Haley points out, energy companies in Colorado have taken pioneering technological approaches to minimizing greenhouse gas emissions from energy production:
“Despite what the ‘leave-it-in-the-ground’ environmental lobbyists might say, Colorado’s oil and natural gas operators continue to decrease our climate footprint, while at the same time increasing production.”
The most recent methane studies add to the list of strong data points supporting Colorado operators’ long track record of producing domestic energy with the highest environmental standards.
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