Satellites used to track methane leaks in climate fight

Asia's Tech News Daily

Satellites used to track methane leaks in climate fight

A yellow streak representing high concentrations of methane, a dangerous greenhouse gas, is visible over southern Iraq on a map produced by Kayrros, a French firm that uses satellites to track leaks from fossil fuel facilities.

The source of the immense leak discovered in 2019 was never officially confirmed — and it is only one of many.

The satellite map shows blotches of colour splattering the globe from the United States to Russia, and Algeria to Turkmenistan, bearing witness to poor maintenance in the oil and gas industry.

Methane (CH4) ranks number two in greenhouse gasses emitted after carbon dioxide (CO2). But while it receives less attention, it is extremely dangerous for the environment. By weight, it creates 28 times as much warming as CO2 over a century.

“We see huge leaks, intentional or unintentional releases that are linked to the production and transport of natural gas and petrol just about everywhere in the world,” said Kayrros’s Jean Bastin.

“Today we can track them and link them with events that can be avoided easily,” he added.

Kayrros uses free data from Europe’s Sentinel satellites to find and track the methane leaks.

The fossil fuel industry is an important source of methane emissions.

The International Energy Agency estimates that it emitted 120 million tonnes of methane last year, about a third of the amount linked to human activity. Moreover, much of that leaked methane can be easily prevented at little or no cost, it believes.

The IEA said in a recent report that it “estimates that more than 70 percent of current emissions from oil and gas operations are technically feasible to prevent and around 45 percent could typically be avoided at no net cost because the value of the captured gas is higher than the cost of the abatement measure.”

– ‘We see them’ –

The European Union and the United States are drafting an agreement to reduce methane emissions by at least 30 percent by 2030.

“That’s completely feasible,” Kayrros President Antoine Rostand said, pointing to the all too frequent practice of emptying gas left in pipelines into the atmosphere ahead of maintenance work.

Old and poorly maintained pipelines are the biggest culprit of leaks.

“Now that we see them, there’s rising awareness,” he said.

Kayrros works for the IEA as well as oil and gas producers who are seeking to improve their environmental practices.

It also counts among is clients investment funds who are seeking to evaluate the climate risks of the companies in which they invest, Rostand said.

The use of satellites is “one of the most recent and promising advances in understanding the level of methane emissions worldwide,” the IEA said last year.

Previously companies had to set up networks of heat-sensitive cameras to catch methane leaks, which usually meant they had at best a partial view of the situation.

“A key advantage of satellites is that they can help locate large emitting sources promptly,” it added.

– Race to spot smaller leaks –

McGill University Professor Mary Kang agreed that satellites can help reduce large leaks from the oil and gas industry infrastructure.

“However, I would say that it misses smaller leaks that can amount to a lot as well because there are many of them,” she said.

Kayrros and its competitors are working to improve the sensitivity of their technology to detect smaller leaks.

The Canadian firm GHGSat is in the process of deploying a constellation of its own satellites that it says will be able to detect emissions 100 times smaller than some current satellites.

It already has three satellites in orbit and is deploying more.

The company is working with TotalEnergies to monitor the French firm’s offshore oil and gas facilities, which have until now escaped monitoring as the sun reflecting off the sea disrupted readings.

The US pressure group Environmental Defense Fund plans to launch its own satellite, called MethaneSAT, in order to get even more detailed readings to find small leaks.

The satellite is scheduled to be placed into orbit by SpaceX in the autumn of 2022.

jmi/ico/rl/dl

TOTALENERGIES

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related

OTHER NEWS

NASA rocket to study mysterious area above the North Pole

Strange things happen in Earth’s atmosphere at high latitudes. Around local noon, when the Sun is at its highest point, a funnel-shaped gap in our planet’s magnetic field passes overhead. ... Read more »

NASA starts loading fuel for James Webb Space Telescope launch

NASA is loading fuel and oxidizer into the James Webb Space Telescope in the Guiana Space Center ahead of its scheduled December 22 launch. Teams at the space center in ... Read more »

Reshaping the plastic lifecycle into a circle

In 1950, 2 million metric tonnes of new plastic was produced globally. In 2018, the world produced 360 million metric tonnes of plastics. Because of their low cost, durability and ... Read more »

Dragons-Eye View

It can be hard to appreciate that a human-made, football-pitch-sized spacecraft is orbiting 400 km above our heads, but there it is. The jewel of human cooperation and ingenuity that ... Read more »

430-foot asteroid expected to swipe past Earth on Monday

An asteroid that measures the same size as the height of the Great Pyramid of Giza, is expected to pass by Earth on Monday afternoon, according to NASA. The 430-foot ... Read more »

Strong winds power electric fields in the upper atmosphere

What happens on Earth doesn’t stay on Earth. Using observations from NASA’s ICON mission, scientists presented the first direct measurements of Earth’s long-theorized dynamo on the edge of space: a ... Read more »

Arecibo data still has astronomers in a spin

Data collected by the Arecibo Radio Telescope before it collapsed late last year will help astronomers better understand how our local neighbourhood of galaxies formed. Arecibo was the world’s largest ... Read more »

Researchers team up to get a clearer picture of molten salts

Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge, Brookhaven and Idaho national laboratories and Stony Brook University have developed a novel approach to gain fundamental insights into molten salts, a ... Read more »

Molding, patterning and driving liquids with light

Jiming Bao, professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Houston, has developed a new fluid that can be cut open by light and demonstrated macroscopic depression of ... Read more »

Geophysicists detect electron dance deep inside the Earth, with a Twist

Most are aware that electrons are negatively charged particles that surround the nucleus of atoms and whose behaviour governs chemical interactions. However, it is less commonly known that electrons come ... Read more »

Combining two cognitive computing nano-elements into one

Researchers at Tohoku University and the University of Gothenburg have established a new spintronic technology for brain-inspired computing. Their achievement was published in the journal Nature Materials on Nov. 29, ... Read more »

Spire Global completes acquisition of exactEarth Ltd

Spire Global has completed its previously announced acquisition of exactEarth Ltd., a leading provider of global maritime vessel data for ship tracking and maritime situational awareness solutions, by way of ... Read more »

Are Water Plumes Spraying from Europa

In 2005, images of a brilliant watery plume erupting from the surface of Saturn’s moon Enceladus captivated the world. The giant column of vapor, ice particles, and organic molecules spraying ... Read more »

Elon Musk: SpaceX faces possible bankruptcy because of engine woes

SpaceX founder Elon Musk told his employees the space company faces a “genuine risk of bankruptcy” because of its struggles in developing its engine for its Starship flights. In an ... Read more »

Russia's Prichal module docks at ISS

Russia’s new docking module Prichal on Friday successfully docked with the International Space Station (ISS), the Russian space agency Roscosmos said. The new addition to the ISS completed an automated ... Read more »

Rocket Lab Announces Neutron Development Update to be Provided on December 2, 2021

Rocket Lab USA will provide the first major update on the development of the Neutron launch vehicle on December 2, 2021 at 8:00 am EST. The virtual event will be ... Read more »

Thales Alenia Space invests in advanced technology for human space flight

Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales 67% and Leonardo 33%, has inaugurated a new Friction Stir Welding facility at one of its production sites in Turin, which will ... Read more »

Prototype SETI hardware gets first data from VLA

A system designed to provide data from the National Science Foundation’s Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) for analysis in the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) has successfully acquired ... Read more »

Russia's new docking module arrives at ISS

The five-ton Prichal docking module arrived at the International Space Station at 10:19 a.m. EST, propelled by a modified Russian Progress propulsion compartment. They docked to the Nauka module on ... Read more »

Gaia reveals that most Milky Way companion galaxies are newcomers to our corner of space

Data from ESA’s Gaia mission is re-writing the history of our galaxy, the Milky Way. What had traditionally been thought of as satellite galaxies to the Milky Way are now ... Read more »

Eagle professor's space debris removal device receives patent

An Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University professor and his co-inventors patented a device that provides a workable strategy for combating the problem of debris accumulating in space from defunct satellites. Known as ... Read more »

Pulsar Fusion Demonstrates Green Mach-7 rocket in Switzerland

On Saturday 26 November, In the sleepy mountain town of Gstaad – Switzerland, British company Pulsar Fusion demonstrated its latest green hybrid rocket engine. An impressive visual plume effect of ... Read more »

Apply now to the brand new ESA Junior Professional Programme!

Positions are now open for Junior Professionals! Do you have a strong interest in space? Do you aspire to channel your knowledge, interest and experience into a career in the ... Read more »

Carrier rocket takes off from Sichuan province

China launched a Long March 3B carrier rocket early on Saturday morning to send a communication satellite into space, according to China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp, the country’s leading ... Read more »

NASA and industry embrace laser communications

Our televisions and computer screens display news, movies, and shows in high-definition, allowing viewers a clear and vibrant experience. Fiber optic connections send laser light densely packed with data through ... Read more »

New opportunities to study ions in space

Comets have an environment of plasma which contains a large number of ions with low energies. It is necessary to understand these low-energy ions’ properties in order to understand the ... Read more »

Study suggests Sun is likely an unaccounted source of the Earth's water

Curtin University researchers have helped unravel the enduring mystery of the origins of the Earth’s water, finding the Sun to be a surprising likely source. A University of Glasgow-led international ... Read more »

Astronomers discover ancient brown dwarf with lithium deposits intact

A team of researchers at the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias (IAC) and the Instituto Nacional de Astrofisica, Optica y Electronica (INAOE), Mexico, has discovered lithium in the oldest and ... Read more »

In the quantum realm, not even time flows as you might expect

A team of physicists at the Universities of Bristol, Vienna, the Balearic Islands and the Institute for Quantum Optics and Quantum Information (IQOQI-Vienna) has shown how quantum systems can simultaneously ... Read more »

Russia launches new docking module to ISS

A Russian Soyuz rocket carrying the new Prichal docking module for the International Space Station blasted off from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Wednesday, the Roscosmos space agency said. ... Read more »

Orbital harmony limits late arrival of water on TRAPPIST-1 planets

Seven Earth-sized planets orbit the star TRAPPIST-1 in near-perfect harmony, and U.S. and European researchers have used that harmony to determine how much physical abuse the planets could have withstood ... Read more »

FCC Validates SES Phase I Accelerated C-band Clearing and Relocation Certification

SES, the leader in global content connectivity solutions, announces the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has validated the certification of SES’s Phase I accelerated C-band clearing and relocation activities, a ... Read more »

Astroscale space debris removal leaders announce series F raises $109 million

Astroscale Holdings Inc. (“Astroscale”), the market leader in satellite servicing and long-term orbital sustainability across all orbits, today announced it closed its Series F round with additional funding of U.S. ... Read more »

New possibilities for life at the bottom of Oceanic Worlds

In the strange, dark world of the ocean floor, underwater fissures, called hydrothermal vents, host complex communities of life. These vents belch scorching hot fluids into extremely cold seawater, creating ... Read more »

Doing photon upconversion a solid-Crystals that convert light to more useful wavelengths

Solid-solution organic crystals have been brought into the quest for superior photon upconversion materials, which transform presently wasted long-wavelength light into more useful shorter wavelength light. Scientists from Tokyo Institute ... Read more »

Mom and daughter bound for space after winning Virgin Galactic prize

A health coach from Antigua and Barbuda has won two tickets worth almost $1 million to be among Virgin Galactic’s first space tourists — and plans to take the trip ... Read more »

ISRO rife with speculation about human space mission centre, IN-SPACe shift

With speculations and rumours abounding on shifting of its human space mission centre and the headquarters of private sector space regulator Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe), officials ... Read more »

Rocket industrial park put into operation in Wuhan

The China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation Limited (CASIC) said that it completed the construction of an intelligent satellite production line and a rocket industrial park in the central Chinese ... Read more »

Tianzhou cargo craft to help advance science

Chinese scientists, researchers and engineers now have the opportunity to use the country’s robotic cargo spacecraft to carry out experiments and tests, according to the China Manned Space Agency. The ... Read more »

First LoRa message bounced off the moon

For the first time ever we bounced a LoRa message off the moon on October 5th 2021, using the Dwingeloo radio telescope. This first was achieved by a team consisting ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic