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The Highwood Bulletin is our way of sharing what we learn. We publish regular updates on emissions management news, novel research, and special insights from our team of experts and our partners.


Our first 2021 issue of the Highwood Bulletin features methane regulations, the European Green Deal, measurement metrics, Biden’s $2 trillion climate plan, big leaks going unaccounted for, research, webinars, and careers.

New Mexico’s methane rules are nearing finalization

New Mexico’s Climate Change Task Force has been working with the New Mexico Environmental Department (NMED) and Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department (EMNRD) on developping new environmental regulations that target air pollution and waste of natural gas resources. ENMRD’s Oil Conservation Division (OCD) proposes that by the end of 2026, 98% of natural gas from upstream and midstream operators must be captured. Gas loss must be reported. They also propose banning routine flaring and venting. Activists are concerned with a loophole that grants “stripper wells” flexibility. Read more here.

The European Green Deal: Will other countries follow suit?

The EU’s Green deal is setting an example for climate change, but EU countries only make up 8.7% of global CO2 emissions. More countries need to participate to make a significant impact on reducing emissions. With China’s pledge for net-zero in 2060, and Joe Biden winning the presidency, the EU now has partners with similar climate change agendas. Click here to find out how the EU may convince other countries to follow suit.

In 2021, use of metrics for methane reductions will grow

The Oil and Gas Methane Partnership (OGMP) 2.0, led by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), and the European Comission (EC), released a framework which is considered the “new gold standard reporting framework”. By mid-2021, the first batch of data from the initiative is set to be released. The UNEP is also helping to develop an International Methane Emissions Observatory (IMEO), which will help streamline methane emissions data to help accelerate reduction efforts. The increasing use of methane metrics is set to be the norm. Read more here.

Biden’s $2 trillion climate pledge will impact Canada

During his presidency, Donald Trump reversed over 100 environmental regulations. Joe Biden seeks to bring many of them back, and rejoin the Paris Agreement on climate change. Mr. Biden calls for the aggressive reduction of methane, has plans to build a green electrical grid, and will mandate sales of zero-emission vehicles. While many saw Canada’s carbon tax increase as a great climate change initiative, the new initiatives proposed by the US may encourage further action from Canada. Read about Mr. Biden’s climate change plans here.

In the US, big leaks are still flying under the radar

Scientists are increasingly discovering that current methods and technologies used to detect and estimate methane leaks are failing to capture a significant number of leaks. Data collected by instrument-mounted satellites and planes continue to reveal a different story than official inventories and reported emissions. To counteract underestimates in reporting, the EDF aims to launch a satellite in 2022 that will collect global data on methane emissions. The data will be made public. Read about it here.

Research: Open-source life-cycle models support new oil sands technologies

A new study demonstrates that open-source life cycle assessment models, such as the the Oil Production Greenhouse Gas Estimator, provide estimates that are consistent with company reports. The study further shows that emerging oil sands technologies can significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions. To read the paper, click here.

Free webinar: Managing and reducing methane emissions – policies technologies and partnerships

Steven Hamburg, Chief Scientist of the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), and Fiji George, Senior Director of Cheniere Energy, will lead a 1-hour discussion about “innovative policies, technologies, partnerships and best practices related to methane emissions from the natural gas sector and their application in the US and the EU.” The session is on January 28, 2021. Click here to register.

Career: Apply to join Pembina Institute as a senior analyst

Pembina is looking for a senior analyst in the Calgary/Edmonton region to join their team! View the job details here. Applications close on January 18, 2021.

The Highwood Bulletin is our way of sharing what we learn. We publish regular updates on emissions management news, novel research, and special insights from our team of experts and our partners.

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