During crude oil extraction process, crude oil, water, and associated gas come to the surface, where they are then separated at the production facilities. Given the unstable condition of the associated gas (both in terms of composition and supply) it is usually vented or flared. The World Bank-led ‘Global Gas Flaring Reduction Partnership’ estimates that globally this amounts to approximately 150 billion cubic meters of gas each year, causing some 400 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions. That is equivalent to 30 per cent of the European Union’s total gas consumption. Needless to say, there is a definite focus on this area from an environmental as well as an economical point of view.
The conversion from a crude-oil fuelled power plant to an associated gas-fuelled operation had several impacts for the company Petroamazonas. The emissions from the power plant were reduced. At the same time, net crude oil production was increased by approximately one oil well’s worth of production – without any additional drilling being executed. The operation also resulted in recognition at last year’s London 2012 Excellence in Flaring Reduction GGFR Awards with Petroamazonas taking home an award.
In Ecuador, the oil industry is an important part of the export industry. At the same time, there is a definite need to protect the delicate environment of the rainforest. To manage both of these, many of the solutions provided by the companies from the energy cluster in Vaasa are more or less necessary. For instance, using energy derived from the oil and gas that are products of the drilling operations not only cuts down on gas flare emissions, it also eliminates the need to transport diesel oil to the area to run the power plants, thereby cutting down on the stress on the environment.”