The Power of Environmental Performance: Boosting ROI in the Oil and Gas Industry
Every company has its own culture and how it perceives the business environment. Nothing could be truer for the Oil & Gas industry. The energy industry is one of the most regulated and regulations impacting air quality in general and methane emissions more specifically are expected to become more stringent.
Against that backdrop, we recognize that attitudes towards environmental regulation vary among E&P operators and that each company must take a posture that fits with their culture, cost structure and business objectives. In our experience, however, we find that clean, efficient and well-running well sites tend to be more profitable than others. In this article, we explore how prioritizing environmental performance can drive ROI for Oil & Gas operators.
Good Environmental Performance Can Be Good Business
Improving environmental performance can positively drive ROI in at least eight ways, covered below.
Mitigating product loss. Fixing leaks represents low-hanging fruit for operators. Over time, seals, hatches, and connections wear out and result in raw methane being released to the atmosphere from tanks, connecting lines, compressors, and other production equipment. Instead of being injected into the sales line, leaks act as silent shoplifters, stealing products right off the well site. Finding these leaks with regular inspections or continuous monitoring and then fixing them keeps more natural gas product in the pipe, increasing revenue and preventing the loss of a finite natural resource.
Cost reduction through efficiency. Improved environmental performance often goes hand in hand with increased operational efficiency. By implementing innovative technologies and processes, operators can optimize their energy consumption, reduce waste generation, and minimize emissions. These practices lead to lower operational costs, translating into direct financial savings. Efficient operations also enhance overall productivity and asset utilization, further contributing to a positive ROI.
Capitalize on certified gas markets. The nascent market for certified gas is growing in importance and gives operators the opportunity to fetch a higher price for their production if they can evidence good environmental performance. Whether you call it Responsibly Sourced Gas (RSG), “Independently Certified Gas” (ICG), “Certified Low Emissions Gas” or some other derivative, frequent LDAR and continuous emissions monitoring can help you evidence certifications with the potential to enhance the value of your natural gas production.
Avoid carbon taxes. Although the U.S. government has not levied a carbon tax on producers yet, industry players are considering advocating for one. In April 2022, industry research firm Wood Mackenzie reported that the American Petroleum Institute supported a national carbon price in its Climate Action Framework. Although we do not in general support tax increases of any kind, we are committed to assisting our customers harness the full potential of their well sites in whatever regulatory landscape they face.
Mitigate regulatory and compliance risks. In an era of increasing environmental regulations, proactive adherence to environmental standards can minimize legal and compliance risks. Regular and/or continuous emissions monitoring and reporting combined with adopting sustainable practices can help operators avoid penalties, litigation, and reputational damage. By mitigating these risks, companies protect their bottom line and provide greater assurance to investors, resulting in improved ROI.
Avoid fines. Many oil-producing states, including New Mexico, Colorado, and North Dakota have instituted more stringent laws aimed at curbing fugitive methane emissions and the flaring of tank vapors and associated gas. For example, New Mexico’s new Ozone Precursor Rule (rule 20.2.50 NMAC Oil and Gas Sector – Ozone Precursor Pollutants) mandates “continuous compliance” and goes so far as to require automatic Burner Management Systems for all flares and combustors. Effective compliance can help you avoid hefty fines and sell more natural gas, boosting ROI.
Enhance your corporate reputation. Good environmental performance also enhances your corporate reputation, making it easier to get things done. Access to capital is a critical success factor in the capital-intensive Oil & Gas industry, and investors are increasingly factoring in an operator’s environmental performance as a potential risk factor. Equity investors and lenders tend to prefer companies with a demonstrated record of good environmental performance. A positive reputation also facilitates regulatory compliance, reduces legal risks, and improves access to capital, ultimately bolstering financial performance. Securing approvals for permits and development plans are easier if you have a good environmental and safety track record.
Attracting and retaining the best talent. A strong commitment to environmental performance also plays a vital role in attracting and retaining top talent. In an era where employees seek purpose-driven organizations, operators that prioritize sustainability become more appealing to a diverse pool of skilled professionals. A workforce dedicated to sustainable practices fosters innovation, efficiency, and cost savings, ultimately leading to a positive impact on the company's financial performance.
Platinum Solutions for Compliance and Environmental Performance
The Oil & Gas industry plays a critical role in providing reliable and affordable energy, which has helped increase prosperity and provide good jobs for hard-working people. Our promise is to help our customers harness the full potential of their well sites by maximizing efficiency and revenue while minimizing costs and mitigating risk.
Some of our solutions include:
High-performance Vapor Recovery Units (VRUs). Platinum VRUs punch above their class, typically moving 30% more gas volume for the same horsepower rating as competing units, because of our innovative design and quality materials. Our VRUs can capture low pressure gas from oil and produced water storage tanks, flare scrubbers, water knockouts, and other sources of fugitive emissions so you can convert these gas streams into revenue while reducing emissions.
Automatic Burner Management Systems. Platinum Burner Management Systems feature reliable auto-reignition. Without automatic re-ignition, a field operator has to be physically present and manually light the pilot, which can be a risky practice.
Data log for continuous compliance. Platinum BMS units can be connected to your SCADA system for remote monitoring and are equipped with a USB port, so you can capture and download important data to a memory stick or flash drive. This data can be used to demonstrate continuous compliance.
Professional and timely LDAR services. Our experienced LDAR technicians use advanced Optical Gas Imaging technology and traditional equipment to locate leaks and dispatch repair teams. Our professionals use the FLIR GFX 320 cameras, which is the only camera recognized by the state of New Mexico for LDAR.
The Platinum Advantage
Our core competency in Facilities Optimization sets us apart. We work with operators in the Permian Basin of all sizes, from companies having only a handful of wells to supermajors. As a result, we leverage the experience gained with larger operators, build best practices into our products and services, and then disseminate that knowledge to our smaller customers.
A well site or facility with an optimized configuration will help you harness its full potential, maximizing its long-term economic value and environmental performance.
Flexible Fleet™ lease agreements. Our Flexible Fleet lease agreements allow you to move VRUs from one site or facility to another at will and without burdensome paperwork. That allows you to move larger units from an older site further down the decline curve that produces less tank vapor to a newer drill. That allows you to tailor VRU capacity to the individual site and to your entire field.
Contact us today at email@example.com to learn more about how our environmental performance solutions can help you harness the full potential of your well site and maximize ROI.