UN Environment Programme to monitor gas companies’ methane emissions

The United Nations Environment Programme will use data supplied by Kayrros for its International Methane Emissions Observatory (IMEO) initiative to keep a closer eye on methane emissions from oil, gas and coal companies globally.

UNEP IMEO, which was launched at the G20 Summit in 2021, is set to transform the conventional approach to methane reduction by combining verified third-party data with action on research, reporting and implementation.

Methane (CH4), the primary component of natural gas, is responsible for more than 25% of the warming we are experiencing today. If oil and gas methane emissions are reduced by 75%, overall greenhouse gas emissions could be reduced by 6 GtCO2e.

Kayrros, which brings extensive experience and expertise in geoanalytics, AI, and satellite imaging, will contribute to advance UNEP’s goal of building a science-based global dataset of empirically verified methane emissions at an increasing level of accuracy and granularity. The data aims to help companies and national regulators reduce methane emissions.

Kayrros and UNEP’s IMEO will collaborate with leading scientists this year to push the capabilities of satellite monitoring and provide new insights to support climate action through methane mitigation in the framework of the Methane Alert and Response System (MARS), launched by UNEP at COP27 in collaboration with the International Energy Agency and the UNEP-hosted Climate and Clean Air Coalition.

At the upcoming COP28, UNEP will present an update on the use of satellites to reduce large methane emissions sources on the planet and how satellite technology can help achieve the goals of the Global Methane Pledge. This update will build on the results of the collaboration with Kayrros.

MARS, which will rely in part on Kayrros detections and measurements, is the first publicly available global system capable of transparently connecting methane detection to notification processes.

Manfredi Caltagirone, head of IMEO, said: “Kayrros’ technology brings unique capabilities. We are pleased to have their technology support UNEP’s Methane Alert and Response System (MARS) and help us advance our mission to reduce methane emissions and meet the aims of the Global Methane Pledge.”

Antoine Rostand, co-founder and President of Kayrros, said the Global Methane Pledge is key to delivering the greenhouse gas cuts needed to avert the worst effects of climate change. He said, “Kayrros is pleased to become a key data provider to IMEO to help it execute its mission, and grateful for the generous support of the Global Methane Hub. The collaboration thus made possible will bring great benefit for climate and humankind.”

Much of the prevalent data until now had been drawn from generic emissions factor-based calculations, often done by companies in-house, which have been shown to underestimate measured methane emission levels by some distance.

TotalEnergies recently launched its 18th biogas production unit in France, which will be the largest in the country with a maximum capacity of 160GWh.

Named BioBéarn, and located in Mourenx in the south-west region, this new unit, fed with organic waste, has begun feeding its first cubic metres of biomethane – a renewable, decarbonised and locally produced gas – into the natural gas transmission network operated by Téréga. It will produce 69 GWh in 2023 and then ramp up progressively to keep pace with the rapidly growing demand for biogas.

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