The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has announced a three-point strategy that is aimed to bring an end to gas flaring in the next two years.
Mr. Maikanti Baru, the Group Managing Director (GMD), who said this while speaking at the 50th Off-shore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston, also said the country has already reduced flared gas from 25% to 10%; scaling the state from the second to the seventh highest gas emitting country in the globe.
“Total flares have significantly reduced to current levels of about 800mmscfd and in the next one to two years, we would have completely ensured zero routine flares from all the gas producers,” he stated.
He said the corporation had adopted a multi-pronged approach to bringing down the volume of gas being flared by oil companies.
According to him, the first step taken by the Corporation was to ensure no new fields were developed without a Field Development Plan, in order to prevent flaring from future projects.
Baru added that in conjunction with the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, the corporation has formulated a series of policies such as the Flare Gas (Prevention of Waste and Pollution) Regulations 2018 and adjustments to the gas flare penalty through its Gas Flare Commercialization Program.
He said the corporation’s flare programme has been followed up with an aggressive gas infrastructure programme:
“Today, we have completed and commissioned almost 600km of new gas pipelines thereby connecting all existing power plants to permanent gas supply pipelines. We are also currently completing the. construction of the strategic 127km Obiafu-Obrikom-Oben gas pipeline –“OB 3” connecting the Eastern supply to the Western demand centres,” he added.
Wikipedia defines gas flaring, alternatively known as a flare stack, as a gas combustion device used in industrial plants such as petroleum refineries, chemical plants, natural gas processing plants as well as at oil or gas production sites having oil wells, gas wells, offshore oil and gas rigs and landfills.
In industrial plants, flare stacks are primarily used for burning off flammable gas released by pressure relief valves during unplanned over-pressuring of plant equipment.
Meanwhile, the environment effects and the economic losses of the gas flaring have remained a major concern and threats to many lives, particularly in the Niger Delta region.
Photo credit: Nigerian Guardian