Clean Air Matters
The CDPHE (Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment) Air Pollution Control Division (APCD) is continuing with its 2013 Rulemaking Effort regarding Oil & Gas air emissions. The second stakeholder meeting was held on February 28th. This meeting focused on additional controls for ALL storage tanks in order to reduce VOC, hydrocarbon (methane, butane, etc.), and greenhouse gas emissions.
Proposed storage tank controls include:
· Lowering the current 20 tpy (tons per year) threshold to 6 typ. Currently only tanks that produce 20 tpy or more are required to have emission controls.
· Maintain an average control efficiency of 95%.
· Include all storage tanks and tank batteries (currently crude oil tanks and produced water tanks are not regulated).
Currently, controlled tanks have issues with flare devices not capturing and combusting all possible flash gases and hatches are letting gases escape (leaking).
Proposed fixes include:
· Require that storage tanks with required control devices have “no detectable emissions”.
· Still subject to 95% control.
· Require Auto-Igniters on flare devices (fix pilot out issues).
· Expand leak detection and require periodic infrared camera inspection.
APCD would like to reduce venting and flaring of gas stream from well sites. Currently the vast majority of gas produced at oil and gas sites in Colorado is routed to a pipeline. APCD is aware of about 60 facilities that are flaring natural gas in Northern Colorado instead of routing that gas to a pipeline. About $18 million in natural gas is flared each year from these facilities. Flared gas could heat over 77,000 homes.
Complete information and a Livestream broadcast of the meeting can be found on the CDPHE's website.
Comments/feedback can be sent to Stefanie Rucker (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Clay Clarke (email@example.com) at the CDPHE APCD.