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Apocalypse4Real

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High Methane - North America
« on: August 01, 2013, 05:22:57 PM »
The latest METOP 2 IASI imagery for July 31, 2013 12-24 hrs reveals a significant increase in upper tropospheric methane over North America.

Contributing factors are record high temps, fires, perhaps permafrost methane release, and also the lowering of OH in the atmosphere due to the Siberian and North American fires.

Attached is the 586 mb image from 07-31-13 pm to give an example of what is observed. the highest methane readings at that layer were 2241 ppb.

The best way to get the full impact is by use of methanetracker.org. Remember to use Google Chrome for access.

Apocalypse4Real

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2013, 07:16:03 AM »
The first IASI image is for August 1, 2013 0-12 hrs with the concentration of 2216 ppb at some location at 469 mb/hPa. Note the global mean is 1819 ppb, the highest so far this year.

The second IASI image is August 1 2013 12-24 hrs with a concentration of 2349 ppb at some location at 586 mb/hPa.

This illustrates the impact of the fires, heatwaves, drought, and perhaps permafrost methane release.


Shared Humanity

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2013, 04:45:30 PM »
The latest METOP 2 IASI imagery for July 31, 2013 12-24 hrs reveals a significant increase in upper tropospheric methane over North America.

Contributing factors are record high temps, fires, perhaps permafrost methane release, and also the lowering of OH in the atmosphere due to the Siberian and North American fires.

Attached is the 586 mb image from 07-31-13 pm to give an example of what is observed. the highest methane readings at that layer were 2241 ppb.

The best way to get the full impact is by use of methanetracker.org. Remember to use Google Chrome for access.

Could these high levels of methane be related to the interaction of the Polar and Ferrel cells? Could this interaction be an effective transfer of methane released from the permafrost to the mid-latitudes?

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2013, 07:04:42 PM »
Shared Humanity,

In my opinion the winds certainly play an important factor in the location of the observed methane concentrations; but the methane source is the fundamental factor and it is very important to remember that the recently observed methane emissions from the Arctic Ocean (while of deep concern) is probably not the source of most of what you see in the images that A4R posted.  For example the images show significant amounts of methane directly over the Southern Ocean, that (in my opinion) could only have come from the decomposition of marine methane hydrates in the Southern Ocean that are then blown circumferentially around the Southern Ocean with some methane bleeding off towards the north and some towards the south (where the image shows them concentrating over Antarctica). However, probably the most important sources regarding your question are: (a) the degradation of the NH permafrost beneath lakes; (b) methane emissions from anthropogenic sources; and (c) possible methane emissions associated with the recent "greening" of the deserts (possibly emitted by ground bacteria).  These are just my opinions, but the risks represented by these methane measurement are all too real.
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wili

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2013, 01:57:21 PM »
Thanks for staying on top of these important developments, A4R.

Am I reading that last map, the 586 mb one, right? Is the highest level really about 2350? Have you seen readings that high a lot at that elevation?
« Last Edit: August 04, 2013, 02:03:38 PM by wili »
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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2013, 05:35:05 PM »
The latest METOP 2 IASI imagery for July 31, 2013 12-24 hrs reveals a significant increase in upper tropospheric methane over North America.

Contributing factors are record high temps, fires, perhaps permafrost methane release, and also the lowering of OH in the atmosphere due to the Siberian and North American fires.

Attached is the 586 mb image from 07-31-13 pm to give an example of what is observed. the highest methane readings at that layer were 2241 ppb.

The best way to get the full impact is by use of methanetracker.org. Remember to use Google Chrome for access.

Let us also acknowledge the contribution to methane levels over North America (and the entire northern hemisphere) from natural gas production.  Check the following link from climate progress which reports on significant methane emissions from natural gas fields in Utah.

Quote
The measurements show that on one February day in the Uintah Basin, the natural gas field leaked 6 to 12 percent of the methane produced, on average, on February days.

The Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) called the emissions rates “alarmingly high.” While the researchers conducted 12 flights, “they selected just one as their data source for this paper,” ClimateWire reports. Researchers actually measured higher emissions on other flights, but atmospheric conditions during those flights “gave the data more uncertainty.”

From Article Abstract:

Quote
Abstract

[1] Methane (CH4) emissions from natural gas production are not well quantified and have the potential to offset the climate benefits of natural gas over other fossil fuels. We use atmospheric measurements in a mass balance approach to estimate CH4 emissions of 55 ± 15x103 kg hr-1 from a natural gas and oil production field in Uintah County, Utah on one day: February 3, 2012. This emission rate corresponds to 6.2-11.7% (1σ) of average hourly natural gas production in Uintah County in the month of February. This study demonstrates the mass balance technique as a valuable tool for estimating emissions from oil and gas production regions, and illustrates the need for further atmospheric measurements to determine the representativeness of our single-day estimate and to better assess inventories of CH4 emissions.

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/grl.50811/abstract

http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2013/08/07/2426441/methane-leakage-gas-fields/

The US produces over 25 trillion cu ft of natural gas a year.  Most of that natural gas is from shale and tight gas formations.  Some 14.5 trillion cu ft of the total (which is expected to rise by 100% over the next decade or so).  If we were just talking 10% of that amount it would be adding 1.45 trillion cu ft to total emissions.  Not inconsequential is it?  If losses are approx. 10% for all US production then it is 2.5 trillion cu ft of emissions. 

http://www.eia.gov/forecasts/aeo/MT_naturalgas.cfm

Global natural gas production is approximately 100 trillion cu ft year.  10% of that would give 10 trillion cubic ft year of leakage.   Starting to sound ugly. 

One of my brother's in law runs a gas field service company and he and I have talked about how hard they try and keep leakage during production as low as possible.  I have trouble believing that many of the locations outside the US try any where near as hard as we do to prevent leakage (I am especially thinking Russia here and emissions affecting methane readings in the East).  The global leakage level could easily be much higher than in the US.  In light of that and the above numbers it sure seems likely that leakage from natural gas production is a significant contributor to global methane emissions.
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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2013, 09:44:03 PM »
Report: Emissions From North Dakota Flaring Equivalent To One Million Cars Per Year http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2013/07/29/2373991/report-emissions-from-natural-gas-flaring-equivalent-to-one-million-cars-per-year/

Natural Gas Pipeline Causes Cornfield To Explode In Western Illinois http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2013/08/13/2457691/cornfield-explosion-in-western-illinois/
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Apocalypse4Real

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #7 on: February 15, 2014, 03:40:25 PM »
There are two papers in the last few months on the under-reporting of CH4 release in the US by about 50-75%, which has a significant impact on US reporting to the UN WMO GHG, report. The US increases in CH4 release are substantiated by the AIRS satellite CH4 monitoring.

Here is the link: http://a4rglobalmethanetracking.blogspot.com/2014/02/us-methane-release-under-reported-by-epa.html


Bruce Steele

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2014, 07:06:45 AM »
A4R, Can the high Co2 readings over the great lakes region - Eastern seaboard be somehow explained by the warm pole -cold continents conditions that have predominated for much of the winter season? Have the high Co2 levels you show on your A4R blog  originated further north and dropped south with the cold air? I tried commenting on your blog without success.

  http://a4rglobalmethanetracking.blogspot.com/

Apocalypse4Real

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2014, 04:19:42 PM »
Bruce,

The dominant wind pattern has been to shove the polar temps and gasses south through the winter. I think it is a factor, but have not studied it completely. We need 3D modeling of CH4 and CO2 atmospheric transport. The closest we get on the web is through use of methanetracker.

jai mitchell

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2014, 03:04:03 AM »
This paper uses geospatial analysis and shows that Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana have the highest concentration of methane emissions in the U.S. due to refinery operations.  They state that the emissions from these regions alone account for 4.1% of the total CO2equivalent global emissions.

This means that emissions inventories is severely understated.

came out last year:

http://people.seas.harvard.edu/~swofsy/PNAS_draft_jan22.pdf

Evidence for a large fossil fuel methane source over the south-central US
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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2014, 01:57:15 AM »
This paper shows a blocking high caused California's drought.

It sure looks like the area is the Hydrate Ridge, and north thru the hydrate field there.

Could low level heating be responsible for this ? Is the movement of methane down from the arctic "capping" the lower atmo from being able to release the methane, and we are getting surface heating from it ?

Because Texas had the same problem after Deepwater Horizon methane emmission

http://m.phys.org/news/2014-09-california-drought-linked-climate.html

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2014, 09:42:43 PM »
This paper shows a blocking high caused California's drought.

It sure looks like the area is the Hydrate Ridge, and north thru the hydrate field there.

Could low level heating be responsible for this ? Is the movement of methane down from the arctic "capping" the lower atmo from being able to release the methane, and we are getting surface heating from it ?

Because Texas had the same problem after Deepwater Horizon methane emmission

http://m.phys.org/news/2014-09-california-drought-linked-climate.html

No,  Methane might be emitted in the area but  it is a well mixed gas and disperses almost immediately.  The high levels of concentration seen are still only 2.2 parts per million.  So not enough  to cause any significant regional heating.

In addition, the release of deep sea hydrates does not travel to the surface, even if there was some disassociation.  Studies of the deep water horizon spill showed very little methane made it to the surface and was primarily digested by microbes underwater over the next few years.  http://phys.org/news/2014-05-fate-methane-deepwater-horizon.html
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morganism

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2014, 10:16:34 PM »
Actually, that may have been due to stormy weather, and the depth of the deepwater horizon well.
and the leftover oil dispersant

A lady is flying over that area every week looking for oil slicks that harm aquatic mammals, and she is seeing roiling seas of (assumed) methane streams EVERY time she flies over the area.

There is plenty of mixing, and in warm water like the gulf, there is enough heat to allow large blooms of methanotrophs, but in cooler waters, such as off the NW, and up in the arctic, that is a pretty big assumption, countered by the SWERUS team and the Sharakov studies, in every location they have looked.

Laurent

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2014, 07:28:31 PM »

Tom_Mazanec

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #15 on: August 14, 2019, 11:43:42 PM »
Fracking may be responsible for a North American methane bubble
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/aug/14/fracking-causing-rise-in-methane-emissions-study-finds?CMP=twt_a-environment_b-gdneco
Scientists at Cornell University have found the “chemical fingerprints” of the rising global methane levels point to shale oil and shale gas as the probable source.

Tom_Mazanec

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #16 on: August 17, 2019, 07:49:30 PM »
https://www.eenews.net/stories/1060954759
A Trump administration plan to replace Obama-era methane standards for the oil and gas industry could leave behind a patchwork of state regulations and voluntary goals to rein in emissions from one of the most potent greenhouses gases.
But analysts say the hodgepodge of existing efforts likely will fall far short in cutting methane emissions to levels needed to meet climate goals.

https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2019/8/15/20805136/climate-change-fracking-methane-emissions
In the real world, though, the news about methane is bad and getting worse. It turns out that a mysterious recent spike in global methane levels that’s putting climate targets at risk may be coming from US oil and gas fracking. If that’s true, it’s bad news, because there’s lots more shale gas development in the pipeline and the Trump administration is busy rolling back regulations on the industry.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2019, 08:10:34 PM by Tom_Mazanec »

Bugalugs

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #17 on: August 22, 2019, 04:18:18 AM »
Why the methane blob around Antarctica?

I note that global methane levels really started increasing after 2007. I believe 2007 was when the Arctic really started to change. Linked perhaps? The Arctic giving off the extra methane?

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #18 on: August 30, 2019, 12:05:22 AM »
Between this, the Siberia fires, and the Amazon burn, it looks like we're reversing years of (mild) progress.

https://www.eenews.net/stories/1060954759
A Trump administration plan to replace Obama-era methane standards for the oil and gas industry could leave behind a patchwork of state regulations and voluntary goals to rein in emissions from one of the most potent greenhouses gases.
But analysts say the hodgepodge of existing efforts likely will fall far short in cutting methane emissions to levels needed to meet climate goals.

https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2019/8/15/20805136/climate-change-fracking-methane-emissions
In the real world, though, the news about methane is bad and getting worse. It turns out that a mysterious recent spike in global methane levels that’s putting climate targets at risk may be coming from US oil and gas fracking. If that’s true, it’s bad news, because there’s lots more shale gas development in the pipeline and the Trump administration is busy rolling back regulations on the industry.
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Tom_Mazanec

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #19 on: September 18, 2019, 08:39:25 PM »
Environmentalists pressure Wolf to act faster on methane emissions
https://stateimpact.npr.org/pennsylvania/2019/09/17/environmentalists-pressure-wolf-to-act-faster-on-methane-emissions/
Quote
Their call for action comes as the Trump administration works to loosen federal regulations on the powerful greenhouse gas.

Tom_Mazanec

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #20 on: September 21, 2019, 02:08:04 AM »

Lamb to EPA chief: You're on the 'wrong side' after methane rule rollback
https://www.post-gazette.com/news/politics-nation/2019/09/19/Conor-Lamb-Andrew-Wheeler-EPA-methane-natural-gas-fracking/stories/201909190034
Quote
Rep. Conor Lamb, D-Mt. Lebanon, joined the chorus of criticism coming from Democrats — while focusing on how, he believed, regulations actually support an extractive industry.

Mr. Lamb, who represents the northwestern Pittsburgh suburbs that include Shell’s ethane cracker plant currently under construction in Beaver County, praised the economic boost that natural gas drilling has provided for a wide variety of people. “It’s been incredible for our area,” he said.

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #21 on: March 26, 2021, 10:41:03 AM »
Emissions return to pre-pandemic levels in nation's largest oilfield

Quote
A study accepted this week in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics finds that methane emissions in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico have rebounded to the same levels seen prior to last year's oil price crash and industry downturn.

The findings are based on data gathered as part of EDF's ongoing Permian Methane Analysis Project (PermianMAP) to measure and report on emissions across the nation's largest oil and gas producing basin. Collection methods informing this study included aircraft surveys and readings from a network of remote sensors installed at towers located throughout the Permian.

Scientists found that from March to April in 2020 emissions plunged 60%, as the impacts of COVID-19 and volatile oil prices unfolded and caused a decrease in Permian drilling activity, but have now returned to pre-pandemic levels. This momentary drop in emissions partially resulted from a decline in new wells drilled and reduced flaring of associated gas, which recent research has shown significantly contributes to Permian methane emissions.

The reduction in emissions was much larger than the 10% dip in production observed during this time period. The study authors believe the reason for the disproportionate drop is that operators in the Permian have historically produced more gas than the region's facilities—including both upstream and midstream—can manage, straining the system and resulting in the highest emissions observed from any U.S. oil and gas basin. A comparatively small drop was enough to relieve that pressure, thereby reducing emissions.

"The fact that Permian methane levels have returned to pre-COVID highs as drilling levels continue to increase confirms we need more state and federal oversight of oil and gas operations to manage this emissions problem," said EDF scientist and lead author David Lyon. "Emissions from flaring and overloaded midstream sites can no longer fly under the policy radar. This science should put those problems squarely in policymakers' scopes in Texas, New Mexico and at the federal level."

Reducing oil and gas methane emissions remains the fastest, most cost-effective way to slow the rate of global warming today. In a Jan. 20 executive order, President Biden committed to reinstate and expand federal methane regulations for oil and gas facilities.

Meanwhile, regulators under Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham in New Mexico are also in the process of advancing two sets of regulations to reduce methane waste and associated air pollution from the oil and gas industry. The state's venting and flaring rule is expected to be finalized this week, but a separate and necessary air pollution rule from the New Mexico Environment Department is still being drafted and will be critical as it addresses leaks which are 70% of the pollution problem in New Mexico.

"This methane pollution resurgence in the nation's largest oilfield spotlights the importance of robust federal protections," said EDF senior attorney Rosalie Winn. "Curbing emissions in the Permian Basin and nationwide is critical to reducing the United States' climate footprint and achieving the Biden administration's goals."

https://phys.org/news/2021-03-emissions-pre-pandemic-nation-largest-oilfield.html#:~:text=Emissions%20return%20to%20pre%2Dpandemic%20levels%20in%20nation's%20largest%20oilfield,-by%20Environmental%20Defense&text=A%20study%20accepted%20this%20week,price%20crash%20and%20industry%20downturn.

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Re: High Methane - North America
« Reply #22 on: March 26, 2021, 10:58:25 PM »
U.S. Oil and Natural Gas Production Emit More Methane Than Previously Thought
https://phys.org/news/2021-03-oil-natural-gas-production-emit.html

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is underestimating methane emissions from oil and gas production in its annual Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks, according to new research from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS). The research team found 90 percent higher emissions from oil production and 50 percent higher emissions for natural gas production than EPA estimated in its latest inventory.

The paper is published in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics.

The research team, led by Joannes Maasakkers, a former graduate student at SEAS, developed a method to trace and map total emissions from satellite data to their source on the ground.

Currently, the EPA only reports total national emissions to the UNFCC. SEAS researchers worked with the EPA to map regional emissions of methane from different sources in the US. That level of detail was used to simulate how methane moves through the atmosphere.

In this paper, the researchers compared those simulations to satellite observations from 2010-2015. Using a transport model, they were able to trace the path of emissions from the atmosphere back to the ground and identify areas across the US where the observations and simulations didn't match up.

The biggest discrepancy was in emissions from oil and natural gas production.

The EPA calculates emission based on processes and equipment. For example, the EPA estimates that a gas pump emits a certain amount of methane, multiplies that by how many pumps are operating across the country, and estimates total emissions from gas pumps.

... "We know that a relatively small number of facilities make up most of the emissions and so there are clearly facilities that are producing more emissions than we would expect from these overall estimates."



Joannes D. Maasakkers et al. 2010–2015 North American methane emissions, sectoral contributions, and trends: a high-resolution inversion of GOSAT observations of atmospheric methane, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (2021)
https://acp.copernicus.org/articles/21/4339/2021/
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