The volume of gas flared by oil and gas companies operating in Nigeria in 2022, dipped by 13.6 per cent to 224.9 billion standard cubic feet (SCF), compared with 260.3 billion SCF of gas flared in the 12-month period of 2021, according to statistics released by the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA).
NOSDRA, in its latest gas flare statistics disclosed that this translated to a loss of $787.2 million, an equivalent of N362.931 billion, in the 12-month period of 2022, compared with $911.0 million (N420.007 billion) recorded in 2021.
The environmental protection agency further stated that the offending oil firms were also expected to pay penalties of $449.8 million, about N207.376 billion, to the coffers of the Federal Government in 2022, compared with penalties of $520.6 million (N240.017 billion) expected to be paid in 2021.
NOSDRA also stated that the volume of gas flared in 2022 was equivalent to carbon dioxide emissions of 11.9 million tonnes, compared with 13.8 million tonnes in 2021; while the gas flared in 2022 was capable of generating 22,500 gigawatts hour of electricity (GWh), compared with 26,000 GWh in 2021.
Giving a breakdown of the total gas flared in the year 2022, the agency reported that companies whose operating areas are onshore, flared 113.2 billion SCF of gas, valued at $396.3 million, about N182.71 billion.
It added that the onshore gas flare volume translated to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of 6.0 million tonnes and was capable of generating 11,300 GWh of electricity, while the companies were expected to pay penalties of $226.5 million (N104.425 billion).
Specifically, the oil spill agency stated that in January, February, March, April, May and June 2022, 19.143 billion SCF, 14.044 billion SCF, 10.488 billion SCF, 6.633 billion SCF, 8.715 billion SCF and 4.875 billion SCF of gas were flared respectively; while 5.676 billion SCF, 5.381 billion SCF, 3.342 billion SCF, 6.847 billion SCF and 13.039 billion SCF of gas were flared in July, August, September, October, November and December.
Conversely, the report stated that companies operating in oil fields offshore Nigeria cost the country a loss of $390.9 million (N180.22 billion), as they flared 111.7 billion SCF of gas; an equivalent of 5.9 million tonnes of CO2; with electricity generating potential of 11,200 GWh; and were liable for penalties of $223.4 million, an equivalent of N102.996 billion.
Particularly, 10.844 billion SCF, 13.088 billion SCF, 6.003 billion SCF, 14.85 billion SCF, 12.582 billion SCF and 4.812 billion SCF of gas were flared in January, February, March, April, May and June 2022, while in July, August, September, October, November and December, 3.729 billion SCF, 6.295 billion SCF, 7.29 billion SCF, 7.587 billion SCF, 10.323 billion SCF and 14.279 billion SCF of gas were flared respectively.
Furthermore, NOSDRA disclosed that in the onshore oil space alone, Shell Nigeria flared 58.5 billion SCF of gas, valued at $204.8 million (N94.42 billion), and was liable to penalties payment of $117 million (N53.94 billion).
The flares were recorded from Shell Nigeria’s Oil Mining Leases (OML) 05, 11, 13, 14, 17, 18, 20, 22, 23, 28, 29, 30, 35, 39, 40, 43 and 46 among others; while offshore, Shell flared 5.8 billion SCF of gas from OML 79 and Oil Prospecting License 212.
In addition, gas flares were recorded at Chevron Nigeria’s OML 49, 90 and 95; Mobil Producing Nigeria’s OML 67, 70, and 104, Addax’s OPL 98, 118 and 225; Nigerian Agip Oil’s OPL 316 and OML 61; Elf Petroleum Nigeria’s OML 56; and Esso E&P’s OPL 209, among others.