Aircraft-Based Estimate of Total Methane Emissions from the Barnett Shale Region

Anna Karion, Colm Sweeney, Eric A. Kort, Paul B. Shepson, Alan Brewer, Maria Cambaliza, Stephen A. Conley, Kenneth James Davis, Aijun Deng, Mike Hardesty, Scott C. Herndon, Thomas Claude Yves Lauvaux, Tegan Lavoie, David Lyon, Tim Newberger, Gabrielle Pétron, Chris Rella, MacKenzie Smith, Sonja Wolter, Tara I. Yacovitch & 1 others Pieter Tans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

82 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present estimates of regional methane (CH4) emissions from oil and natural gas operations in the Barnett Shale, Texas, using airborne atmospheric measurements. Using a mass balance approach on eight different flight days in March and October 2013, the total CH4 emissions for the region are estimated to be 76 ± 13 × 103 kg hr-1 (equivalent to 0.66 ± 0.11 Tg CH4 yr-1; 95% confidence interval (CI)). We estimate that 60 ± 11 × 103 kg CH4 hr-1 (95% CI) are emitted by natural gas and oil operations, including production, processing, and distribution in the urban areas of Dallas and Fort Worth. This estimate agrees with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimate for nationwide CH4 emissions from the natural gas sector when scaled by natural gas production, but it is higher than emissions reported by the EDGAR inventory or by industry to EPA's Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program. This study is the first to show consistency between mass balance results on so many different days and in two different seasons, enabling better quantification of the related uncertainty. The Barnett is one of the largest production basins in the United States, with 8% of total U.S. natural gas production, and thus, our results represent a crucial step toward determining the greenhouse gas footprint of U.S. onshore natural gas production. (Graph Presented).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8124-8131
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Volume49
Issue number13
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 7 2015

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Methane
Shale
natural gas
Natural gas
shale
aircraft
methane
Aircraft
gas production
Greenhouse gases
confidence interval
mass balance
Oils
greenhouse gas
oil
Environmental Protection Agency
footprint
urban area
flight
industry

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry

Cite this

Karion, A., Sweeney, C., Kort, E. A., Shepson, P. B., Brewer, A., Cambaliza, M., ... Tans, P. (2015). Aircraft-Based Estimate of Total Methane Emissions from the Barnett Shale Region. Environmental Science and Technology, 49(13), 8124-8131. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.5b00217
Karion, Anna ; Sweeney, Colm ; Kort, Eric A. ; Shepson, Paul B. ; Brewer, Alan ; Cambaliza, Maria ; Conley, Stephen A. ; Davis, Kenneth James ; Deng, Aijun ; Hardesty, Mike ; Herndon, Scott C. ; Lauvaux, Thomas Claude Yves ; Lavoie, Tegan ; Lyon, David ; Newberger, Tim ; Pétron, Gabrielle ; Rella, Chris ; Smith, MacKenzie ; Wolter, Sonja ; Yacovitch, Tara I. ; Tans, Pieter. / Aircraft-Based Estimate of Total Methane Emissions from the Barnett Shale Region. In: Environmental Science and Technology. 2015 ; Vol. 49, No. 13. pp. 8124-8131.
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abstract = "We present estimates of regional methane (CH4) emissions from oil and natural gas operations in the Barnett Shale, Texas, using airborne atmospheric measurements. Using a mass balance approach on eight different flight days in March and October 2013, the total CH4 emissions for the region are estimated to be 76 ± 13 × 103 kg hr-1 (equivalent to 0.66 ± 0.11 Tg CH4 yr-1; 95{\%} confidence interval (CI)). We estimate that 60 ± 11 × 103 kg CH4 hr-1 (95{\%} CI) are emitted by natural gas and oil operations, including production, processing, and distribution in the urban areas of Dallas and Fort Worth. This estimate agrees with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimate for nationwide CH4 emissions from the natural gas sector when scaled by natural gas production, but it is higher than emissions reported by the EDGAR inventory or by industry to EPA's Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program. This study is the first to show consistency between mass balance results on so many different days and in two different seasons, enabling better quantification of the related uncertainty. The Barnett is one of the largest production basins in the United States, with 8{\%} of total U.S. natural gas production, and thus, our results represent a crucial step toward determining the greenhouse gas footprint of U.S. onshore natural gas production. (Graph Presented).",
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Karion, A, Sweeney, C, Kort, EA, Shepson, PB, Brewer, A, Cambaliza, M, Conley, SA, Davis, KJ, Deng, A, Hardesty, M, Herndon, SC, Lauvaux, TCY, Lavoie, T, Lyon, D, Newberger, T, Pétron, G, Rella, C, Smith, M, Wolter, S, Yacovitch, TI & Tans, P 2015, 'Aircraft-Based Estimate of Total Methane Emissions from the Barnett Shale Region', Environmental Science and Technology, vol. 49, no. 13, pp. 8124-8131. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.5b00217

Aircraft-Based Estimate of Total Methane Emissions from the Barnett Shale Region. / Karion, Anna; Sweeney, Colm; Kort, Eric A.; Shepson, Paul B.; Brewer, Alan; Cambaliza, Maria; Conley, Stephen A.; Davis, Kenneth James; Deng, Aijun; Hardesty, Mike; Herndon, Scott C.; Lauvaux, Thomas Claude Yves; Lavoie, Tegan; Lyon, David; Newberger, Tim; Pétron, Gabrielle; Rella, Chris; Smith, MacKenzie; Wolter, Sonja; Yacovitch, Tara I.; Tans, Pieter.

In: Environmental Science and Technology, Vol. 49, No. 13, 07.07.2015, p. 8124-8131.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T1 - Aircraft-Based Estimate of Total Methane Emissions from the Barnett Shale Region

AU - Karion, Anna

AU - Sweeney, Colm

AU - Kort, Eric A.

AU - Shepson, Paul B.

AU - Brewer, Alan

AU - Cambaliza, Maria

AU - Conley, Stephen A.

AU - Davis, Kenneth James

AU - Deng, Aijun

AU - Hardesty, Mike

AU - Herndon, Scott C.

AU - Lauvaux, Thomas Claude Yves

AU - Lavoie, Tegan

AU - Lyon, David

AU - Newberger, Tim

AU - Pétron, Gabrielle

AU - Rella, Chris

AU - Smith, MacKenzie

AU - Wolter, Sonja

AU - Yacovitch, Tara I.

AU - Tans, Pieter

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N2 - We present estimates of regional methane (CH4) emissions from oil and natural gas operations in the Barnett Shale, Texas, using airborne atmospheric measurements. Using a mass balance approach on eight different flight days in March and October 2013, the total CH4 emissions for the region are estimated to be 76 ± 13 × 103 kg hr-1 (equivalent to 0.66 ± 0.11 Tg CH4 yr-1; 95% confidence interval (CI)). We estimate that 60 ± 11 × 103 kg CH4 hr-1 (95% CI) are emitted by natural gas and oil operations, including production, processing, and distribution in the urban areas of Dallas and Fort Worth. This estimate agrees with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimate for nationwide CH4 emissions from the natural gas sector when scaled by natural gas production, but it is higher than emissions reported by the EDGAR inventory or by industry to EPA's Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program. This study is the first to show consistency between mass balance results on so many different days and in two different seasons, enabling better quantification of the related uncertainty. The Barnett is one of the largest production basins in the United States, with 8% of total U.S. natural gas production, and thus, our results represent a crucial step toward determining the greenhouse gas footprint of U.S. onshore natural gas production. (Graph Presented).

AB - We present estimates of regional methane (CH4) emissions from oil and natural gas operations in the Barnett Shale, Texas, using airborne atmospheric measurements. Using a mass balance approach on eight different flight days in March and October 2013, the total CH4 emissions for the region are estimated to be 76 ± 13 × 103 kg hr-1 (equivalent to 0.66 ± 0.11 Tg CH4 yr-1; 95% confidence interval (CI)). We estimate that 60 ± 11 × 103 kg CH4 hr-1 (95% CI) are emitted by natural gas and oil operations, including production, processing, and distribution in the urban areas of Dallas and Fort Worth. This estimate agrees with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimate for nationwide CH4 emissions from the natural gas sector when scaled by natural gas production, but it is higher than emissions reported by the EDGAR inventory or by industry to EPA's Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program. This study is the first to show consistency between mass balance results on so many different days and in two different seasons, enabling better quantification of the related uncertainty. The Barnett is one of the largest production basins in the United States, with 8% of total U.S. natural gas production, and thus, our results represent a crucial step toward determining the greenhouse gas footprint of U.S. onshore natural gas production. (Graph Presented).

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Karion A, Sweeney C, Kort EA, Shepson PB, Brewer A, Cambaliza M et al. Aircraft-Based Estimate of Total Methane Emissions from the Barnett Shale Region. Environmental Science and Technology. 2015 Jul 7;49(13):8124-8131. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.5b00217