Capterio chairs key panel on methane and flaring in major energy conference in Turkmenistan

It’s always an honour to be invited to work on some of the world’s most pressing issues. The invitation to chair a panel on flaring and methane in Turkmenistan, a global hotspot, was one not to miss.

Our panel discussed the critical topic of “reduction of methane and CO2 associated with oil and gas production” at Turkmenistan’s International Scientific Energy Conference in Ashgabat. With an outstanding lineup of speakers from Turkmengas (Irina Luryeva), Dragon Oil (Roberto Espinoza), Baker Hughes (Alex Ustyuzhanin), UNEP (Andrew Morton), Andrew Thorpe (Jet Propulsion Lab), Carbon Limits (Irina Isakova), and serial adventurer (George Kourournis), we had the best possible team.

Plus, it was exciting to hear – repeatedly throughout the conference – the strong commitment (from all levels of political and business leadership) to reducing emissions. Especially given that the President endorsed the Global Methane Pledge and that Turkmenistan is a key player in the region that is hosting COP29 later this year.

It’s clear that there is significant international focus on Turkmenistan, especially following the signing of the Global Methane Pledge in December 2023. The IEA, World Bank, and Capterio estimate that eliminating flaring, venting, and leaking gas could bring an additional 9 BCM of gas to market, increase revenues by $1.6 billion annually, and reduce emissions by 150-420 million CO2-equivalent tonnes of greenhouse gases.

A brief summary of the discussion:

  • Mark Davis (Capterio) outlined the scale of the opportunity for flaring/methane reduction and stressed that it represents a positive opportunity to create value, improve revenue, reduce emissions, improve energy security and provide funding to accelerate the energy transition. Capterio’s flare-tracking service FlareIntel Pro tracks every flare for every asset, every day – and helps companies and countries to identify opportunities and drive performance.
  • Roberto (Dragon Oil) outlined their commitment to decarbonization and achieving zero routine flaring by 2027, including initiatives like additional compression for low-pressure gas.
  • Alex (Baker Hughes) gave an overview of the services they offer to reduce flaring on various scales and highlighted the importance of efficient, low-emission compression operations.
  • Andrew (UNEP) discussed the need to accelerate progress on methane emissions and the role of the UN-led MARS programme, which alerts operators to major methane leaks.
  • Andrew (JPL) also outlined a range of satelitte-based technologies to track methane (CH4) from space.
  • George inspired us with a recap of his 2013 expedition into the Darvaza crater and shared our hope to launch a new scientific mission there in 2024. See our original article here (and image below from George’s presentation – using Capterio data).
  • Irina (Turkmengas) provided insights into emissions reduction progress observed by Capterio at the Darvaza crater.
  • Irina (Carbon Limits) introduced their new methane estimation tool, MIST, and expressed hope that Turkmenistan will soon become the 35th country to adopt it.

Thank you to all the speakers for a lively session, and special thanks to Nazar Atajanov and the Turkmenforum organization for organizing an engaging and exciting conference in the beautiful city of Ashgabat.