7 Of the Most Important Environmental Innovations for Oil & Gas

7 of the Most Important Environmental Innovations for Oil and Gas


In the year 2018, there was a lot of evidence for Oil and Gas companies all over the world that required them to step up their game for the cause of sustainable commitments. They did so by adapting to some of the newest and emerging realities from the global landscape of energy.

We have seen the governments all across the Middle East and the wider world setting their own forms of targets which lowered their respective rates of carbon emission. This brought forward a larger presence of renewable sources of energy from amongst the national energy mix. All of this constitutes for the oil and gas industry to be looking up towards all sorts of clean technology solutions. With the help of these technologies, they are looking for the best methods of successfully pivoting the industry towards a cleaner energy vision.

In the current market landscape, we are finding an increasing rate of oil and gas companies that are consistently trying and being successful from a wide range of clean energy solutions and technologies. These are therefore helping them work in a more sustainable manner, while also minimizing their costs – but more importantly – cutting down their carbon footprint.

That said, there are so many among the Middle Eastern OPEC countries that are pushing through their economic diversification strategies whilst also promoting a faster and greater adoption of sustainability. We can, now, easily find such measures being adopted throughout the industry and also expect to see so much more in the coming years.

Now, let’s have a look at some of the instances of how companies are exploring the clean and sustainable energy outlook through eco-innovation. Here are some of our findings:

        1.         Better Use of Data

At the year-end of 2017, the Oil and Gas industry’s gap in performance has been placed by McKinsey at a whopping $200 billion. Shortly after this, researchers stated that on an average basis, all the offshore oil and gas platforms tend to run at a fixed maximum production potential of 77 percent.

This is where it was found that if the data analytics systems – if implemented correctly – can actually overcome the complexities in oil and gas operations. As a result, these companies can experience quick yielding return which can be as high as 30 to 50 times the original investment. Furthermore, this has the potential of resulting in reduced environmental impact as bottlenecks, accidents and wastage are exponentially reduced.

        2.         Decreasing Freshwater Usage

In the oil production process, water tends to be a very essential element. This is the case in all the processes which range from fracking to the separation of oil from every element present in oil sands. Because of this, hundreds of millions of water barrels are needed to be utilized on a daily basis.

Now, while the oil and gas industry has management processes that tend to recycle major quantities of this water (standing at somewhere between 80 to 95 percent), these companies are trying something completely new. They are working on ways to completely rethink the process of extraction without the use of fresh water from the very outset.

        3.         Improving Water Recycling Efforts

In order to reduce the amounts of freshwater usage in these oil and gas companies, they are looking for the most effective methods of reusing and recycling water from all of these operations. This is where companies are using 100 percent non-potable water by the introduction of filtration oxidizing methods which include advanced chemical-free solutions for water treatment which help neutralize bacterial contaminants. Examples of these processes include iron-oxidizing bacteria and sulfate-reducing.

        4.         Reducing Methane Leaks

A very cost-effective initiative for the industry is finding a way to reduce methane leaks. The International Energy Agency found recently that it is quite possible financially to reduce gas and oil methane emissions by utilizing emerging and available technologies.

        5.         Used Oil Recycling

More and more companies can now be seen utilizing small scale forms of micro-refinery units which are used to transform all the used up oil into important diesel fuel. Not only will this approach help the fuel yields for ongoing operations but it tends to be an inexpensive alternative as opposed to traditional methods of oil disposal.

        6.         Streamlining Processes

The use of ultrasound technologies can help companies create a 3-D image of the inside of an oil well. This can then enable them to make cost-effective and informed decisions for their production units. The very same can be experienced in reserve enhancement and replacement capabilities, automation, analytics, IoT and even some emerging Artificial Intelligence programs. All of these have the capability to eliminate all the operational efficiencies that make oil and gas production cleaner and greener.

        7.         Greater Acquisitions and Usage of Renewable Energies

While oil and gas companies are looking to produce lower rates of emissions, there are also some that are looking into the diversification into the market of renewable energy. At the beginning of 2018, British Petroleum had a capital investment of $0.5 billion ready to be invested in clean energy. They did so by recently buying a $200 million stake of one of the largest solar production units in Europe.

With such high profile investments becoming a norm, oil and gas companies are set to transform their investment portfolios for the coming decade into renewable and green energy. There are also some equally exciting advances in the biofuels industry which are planning for large scale development in the near future.

Exxon Mobil is an example of a company that has already made significant advances in biofuels production while making great breakthroughs in the very same. Now they are capable of producing 10,000 barrels on a daily basis.

With all of these essential eco-innovations, we can see the foundation of the entire industry which will be completely sustainable and green. That said, 2019 may even be the year where the biggest eco-transformations will be seen in the whole oil and gas industry.

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