Methane emissions from oil and natural gas production in New Mexico have dropped by more than 50 percent over the past year thanks to advances in technology and changes in the way wells are drilled, state regulators said Friday.
Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Secretary Ken McQueen told a panel of state lawmakers that most companies actively drilling in New Mexico are abiding by reporting requirements and are tracking the volumes of methane intentionally released through venting and flaring as part of their operations. With 60,000 active wells being documented each month, McQueen said his agency found just 56 instances in which operators failed to report the required data.
“That leads us to believe we have a very high compliance level,” he testified. McQueen presented a series of graphs and charts, including one that showed vented and flared methane made up just over 1 percent of New Mexico’s total natural gas production.
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