THE GAS FLARING PHASE-DEADLINE: THE YEAR 2008
The common wisdom in Nigeria is that the proper and effective tacking of the gas flaring problem is necessary for the successful harnessing and developing of Nigeria’s gas resources, As noted earlier also, not only that gas flaring has badly stigmatized Nigeria before the international community, it has been one of the causes of grave environmental degradation and social crises in the Niger Delta region. Hence, gas flaring has been subject of incessant complaints by individuals and group among the inhabitants of the region as well as international non-governmental organizations. The combination of the above and other factors, associated with gas flaring in the Nigeria Delta, it became a subject of numerous litigations against the Federal Government and the multinational oil companies operating in the region.
It is thus the policy of the Government to pursue a phase elimination of gas flaring by the year 2008. 1985 was initially promoted as feasible to end gas flaring. In 1966 however, 2008 was agreed initially with the SPDC and other Operations. Since then however, unfolding socio-political and economic development in the country have caused changes and inconsistencies in government and the oil companies’ position about the flare phase-out deadline. Early in the year 2000, in view of the renewed “huge investment” of the government to the flaring phase-out project through the NLND, the government though to end the flare by 2003, while the companies thought 2006 would be more realistic. A compromise was then struck, and it was agree that flares would go off by 2004. The government later though it cold indeed achieve zero flares only by 2006. But, in its 2001report, the SPDC restated its “commitment to ending the unnecessary flaring by the year 2008”. It appears therefore that the 2008 date had actually been of the agenda of the oil companies for a very long time, much earlier time that it was announced. In a lecture the SPDC even came up with a program for the phased implementation of the 2008 flaring phase-out deadline.
One striking point indicative in this graph is that up to 2000, 99% of the gas produced by Shell in Nigeria was flared! By 2008 however, it is expected that the gas flaring would 100% be eliminated.
Whether 2008 is a realistic date for flares to terminate or not depends on the Government’s commitment and political will, the SPDC and particularly the prospects of the various LNG projects. Already, the past experiences of postponements of the earlier deadline have shaken the confidence of the populace in the government even for the 2008. The question is whether the FG could compel the MNOCs to live up to our expectations even as the SPDC had hinted its inability to end gas flaring from the field by the 2008 deadline? SPDC had cited funding problems to complete project aimed at gathering the flaring gas from oil fields as contributing largely to the postponement. It said the contribution by the NNPC to cover its 55% equity in the joint venture, recorded by 2005 a shortfall of $4 billion over an eight-year period. Thus, the Shell declared: “construction of (gas gathering facilities).will only be completed by the end of 2009, which means that gas flaring from the relevant flow stations will not be eliminated until that time.
It is gratifying however, to note that both the National Assembly (NA) and the Executive recently are re-stating the Nigeria’s commitment and resolve to end the flaring by the deadline. The author is of the view that in order to build or restore some public confidence in the government on this issue, the NA should more seriously first address the funding death as claimed by SPDC. NA and the government should note that all economic theories agree that provision of public good (including clean environment) is the primary responsibility of the government, and should not be left to private sector (SPDC or other oil companies). Let the funding issue be properly addressed, and the SPDC will then be left with the reasonability for explaining any failures or delays on the technical aspects of the gas flaring problem. This should be done sooner than later.
THE STATUTORY PROVISIONS
The Petroleum Act, 1969 (PA), and the Petroleum (Drilling and Production Regulations 1969
The two principal statues regulating the Nigeria’s petroleum exploration and production (E&P) section generally are the Petroleum Act 1969 (PA), and the Petroleum (drilling and Production) regulations 1969 (PDPR) made pursuant thereto. While the PA doe not contain any provisions on gas utilization, the PDPR under Regulation 42, merely required the operators to:
.not later than five years after the commencement of production .submit to the Minister, any feasibility study, program or proposal.for the utilization of an natural gas, whether Associated with oil or not, which has been discovered in the relevant area.
There was not indication showing that the above provision was ever implemented by the Multi-National Oil Companies (MNOC) or enforced by the government in any event, the law itself was inherently fatally followed as it makes no provision for sanctions against non-compliance. This thus contributed to its ineffectiveness. Indeed the two statues above enacted in 1969 are clearly dated law. They require an overhaul, revision and updating to meet up with current developments in the global oil and gas exploration and development industry. The review should incorporate provisions not only requiring zero flares but also general environmental and social responsibility on the part of both government and the oil companies engaged in oil and gas exploration and development.
Associated Gas Re-Injection Act and the Regulation
A subsequent legislation, in 1979, the associated gas Re-injection Act was promulgated ostensibly to fill up some of the vacuum left by earlier legislation. It set the limit of October to April 1980 for the oil companies to develop gas utilization projects and to stop gas flaring by 1984, or face fines. In 1984, the Associated Gas Reinjection (Continued Flaring of Gas) Regulations amended the existing legislation to provide for limited exemptions for flaring in certain circumstances. This was further strengthened in 1985) against the oil companies for each 1000 standard cubic feet (scf) of gas flared. This amount being too meager, even at that time when the Nigeria Naira was still strong did not provide any incentive to induce the companies reduce flaring. These fines thus had to be raised by government in January 1998 to US$11 for every 1000scf of gas flares. Then there can the Associated Gas Re-injection Act 2004 and the Associated Gas Re-injection (Amendment) Act 2004 which obligated all oil producing companies in the country to submit detained plans for gas utilization. It also prohibits the flaring of associated gas without the written permission of the petroleum Resources. All these were not enough as deterrent to the oil companies flaring the gas.
The National Gas Draft Bill (NGDB)
Federal Government has constituted as technical committee on the implementation of the downstream natural gas sector reform. The committee will work out the details and run checks on the natural Gas Draft Bill (NGDB) which is currently going through processes in the National Assembly. The committees will also critically the sections of the bill that relate to taxes and fiscal terms and advise government on the best options for the industry to be on fast track. Other legislation in the pipeline include t he Downstream Gas Act (DGA) which would be aimed more at ensuring liberalization of the gas already received federals executive council approval and has been forwarded to the National Assembly for consideration.
The Federal Environmental protection Agency (FEPA) Act 1988/92
The Federal Environmental protection Agency (FEPA) Act, which established the FEPA, has been the principle framework legislation for environmental ma
nagement in Nigeria. This Act incorporated most of the Nigeria’s national commitments under UNFCCC and other multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs). It also incorporated most of the government’s policy and commitments on environmental management as enshrined broadly in the NPE and NA21.
Under Section 17(1) of the FEPA amendment Act of 1992, the FEPA was empowered to:
Establish more criteria, guidelines’ specifications and standards to protect and enhance the quality of Nigeria’s air resources and to promote the public health or welfare and the normal development and productive capacity of the nation’s human, animal or plant life…
This provision seeks to establish and regulate on the minimum essential air quality standards for human plants, and animals control of concentration of substances in the air that may result in damage or determination of property of human, animal or plant health, prevent and combat all forms of atmospheric pollution. Specifically, FEPA was empowered to employ the “use of appropriate means to reduce emission to permissible level”. It has been noted earlier that in a re-structuring programme in 1999, FEPA was up-graded to a full-fledged federal ministry.
Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Act
Another law, which is very important, is the Environmental Impact Assessment Act (degree No. 86 of 1992) which by its section 2(2) require that an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) be carried out: ‘where the extent, nature or location of a proposed project activity is such that is likely to significantly affect the environment”. Such EIA must also be carried out in accordance with the provisions of the Act Section 2(1) of the EIA Act, also provides the following:
The public or private sector of the economy shall not undertake or embark on or authorize projects or activities without prior consideration, at an early stage, of their environment effects.
By virtue of this law, therefore, environmental impact assessments are compulsory in certain cases, including oil and gas fields’ development and construction of oil refineries, some pipelines and processing and storage facilities.
Section 4 of the EIA Act prescribes, the minimum content of an EIA, to include the following: a description of the proposed activities; a description of the affected environment including specific information necessary to identify and access the environmental effect of the propose activities; an identification and description of measures available to mitigate adviser environmental impacts of proposed activity and assessment of these measures; amongst others.
The World Bank has said the following regarding the relationship between gas flaring regulations and EIA requirements:
With the implementation of Decree No. 86 of 1992, EIA’s have become an integral part of the planning process and are mandatory for the development of oil and gas fields. Permits to flare, are therefore, now granted in the context of EIA procedures, which are overseen by the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (FEPA0 and the DPR. FEPA’s EIA guidelines for Exporting and Producing (E& P) projects 1994 State that mitigating measures to pressure air quality must specifically include the minimization of venting during production.
Flowing from the statement above, a ministerial permit may not be granted; if an EIA procedure carried out shows that a proposed activity (whether in connection with oil or gas) would have detrimental effects on the environment.
The Federal Environmental Protection Agency (FEPA) is the body in which jurisdiction over EIA a matter is vest. It however shares this role with the Ministry of Petroleum, which acts through the environmental branch of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR). It is said to have a clear and unacceptable conflict of interest in that it is the same Ministry of Petroleum which grants certificates permitting continuous flaring by oil companies, that will also supervise the carrying out of EIA procedures which aims to expose environmentally harmfully activities (such as Flaring Environmental Rights Actions (ERA) in their report has stated concerning the above conflict of interest that, no confidence can be had in the enforcement of gas flaring regulations, and in the adequacy of EIA procedures, for as long as the Ministry of Petroleum continues in its dual roles.
FEPA is charged with the responsibility to issue standards for water, air and land quality, and it also makes regulations which govern environmental standards in the oil and other industries. The DPR, in exercise of its jurisdiction, issues also a set of environmental guidelines and standards for the Petroleum Industry in Nigeria and these standards overlap with and in some cases differ from those issued by FEPA. However, according to Human Rights Watch, the specific standards set are comparable to those in force in Europe or the US.
In Nigeria, there is in practice little enforcement of the requirements to carry out EIA’s either by FEPA or by the DPR’s regulatory arm, the Petroleum Inspectorate, and virtually no quality control over the assessments are carried out.
Also, with both FEPA and the DPR issuing environmental standards, oil and gas operators are subjected to both provisions without any clear precedence of one over the other. This conflict in jurisdiction between both bodies is presently being addressed and it will be a wiser option to resolve all conflicts in favour of FEPA, because of the Ministry’s conflict of interest. It is worth nothing that, neither FEPA nor the DPR has implemented anti-flaring policies for natural gas waste from oil production, nor have they monitored the emissions to ensure compliance with their own regulations.
Nigerian Environmental Management Act (Draft) 2000
The draft Nigerian Management Act (NEQMACT) is prepared by the FMEV, as a framework environmental legislation was meant to repeal the FEPA Act. Of particular interest, is the innovation brought in by the draft Act on gas flaring phase-out policy of the government. It introduced criminal liability for gas flaring against both the responsible oil company as a legal entity, and its management staff individually. Section 20 of the draft Act empowers the ministry to issue a notice in an official gazette, banning gas flaring, but may in circumstances grant special permit to flare for a limited period of time. Sub-section (4) then provides thus:
Any person who violate the provisions of Sub-Section (2) or (3) of this section commits an offence and shall on conviction pay a fine not exceeding N500,000,000.00 (Five Hundred Million Naira).
In addition to the penalty prescribed under subsection (4), subsection (5) provides that “.the Chairman, Managing Director, and the Directors of the body corporate at the time the offence was committed shall be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years each.
This is the kind of law that is needed if anything serious is to be achieved in the fight against gas flaring and other environmental and social crimes being committed by both oil companies and the Federal government as joint venture partner in the Nigeria’s petroleum resources development. This piece of environmental legislation is unprecedented in the Nigeria’s legislative history for environmental protection and natural resources management. It was comprehensive in the issues covered, and much professional expertise, both local and foreign was well utilized in producing the document. Indeed, even the World Bank was fascinated by the draft, review by the draft, reviewed and made more inputs in its. The WB then offered to finance three (3) national stakeholder workshops in different parts of Nigeria to sample more opinions observations and comments from wider populace, with a view to standardizing the draft. Curiously however, this piece of draft legislation ended up as a draft, and law is yet to see the light of the day.
But even with a law like the draft NEMACT, it is apparent that the
solution to be problem of gas flaring in Nigeria would more than a mere piece of legislation. There will be need for more investment in the technology and facility for gas and utilization.
Even more directly needed, is order to address the problem, is more political will on the part of the government to enforce the law, and to require the MNOC’s to live up to their corporate social and environmental responsibilities.
Ministry of Petroleum Resources (MRP)
The MPR, headed by a Minister, is charged with the responsibility of formulating policies relating to oil and gas industry. The MPR performs this onerous responsibility through the Department and Petroleum resources (DPR). The DPR has also issues regulations and standards of the conduct of E & P Operations.
Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)
The NNPC was established by the Nigerian National Petroleum corporation Decree No. 33 of 1973 to assume the responsibilities hitherto performed by the MPR. Broadly, the responsibilities of the NNPC are divided into two: Commercial and Inspectorate functions. It has 12 strategic business units, covering the entire spectrum of oil industry operations. One of these is the Nigerian Gas Company (NGC) by which NNPC handles gas development policies in the country. There is operational sector that handles Nigeria’s participatory interest in the various agreements Nigeria signed with the MNOCs.
Federal Ministry of Environment (FMENV)
The FMENV was established in 1999 as the apex authority on the Environment. It assumed the responsibilities of the then FEPA as contained in the FEPA Decree. These instrument that set up the FMENV also specifically transferred to it, the Oil and Gas Pollution Control Unit of the DPR. The FMENV, in response to current demands of Nigeria’s international obligations and in accordance with the Nigeria’s NEP, drafted the National Environmental Management Act (NEMACT), which inter alia incorporated the current government policy on gas flaring elimination, and the utilization of Nigeria’s gas resources.
The Niger Delta development Commission (NDDC)
The NDDC was established by the Niger-Delta Development Commission Act, 2000 as an offshoot of the Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission (OMPADEC) established in 1988. It established pursuant to the government’s sensitiveness to the plight of the Niger Delta Oil producing communities. It was established pursuant to the government’s sensitiveness to the plight of the Niger Delta oil producing communities. It also addresses the environmental and ecological problems with the E&P activities. The Commission is composed of a Governing Board with members from each of the States constituting the Niger Delta.
NDDC, The Niger Delta Region and Gas Flaring
The relevance of the NDDC to gas flaring phase-out cannot be over-emphasized; all the Nigeria’s gas resources are located within the Niger Delta region. Hence, Niger Delta is the Nigeria’s environment and peoples most affected by the flaring. This tripartite relationship has been described by Diane Abbot in her article entitled “Think Jamaica is bad? Try Nigeria”. Thus “Nigeria’s greatest blessing has been oil; but it has also been it greatest curse. It is the sixth biggest oil producer in the world. Oil accounts for 95% of exports by value and 80% of government revenue amounting to billions and billions of pounds. But the discovery of oil has been an ecological disaster for the Niger Delta (one of the most populous parts of the country) where the oil extracted. Shell and other Western Oil Companies have, in collusion with successive military dictatorships, raped the region. Petrol contamination of the water table has made local water undrinkable. Farming and fishing grounds have been ruined and gas flaring in the Delta is cited as Africa’s single biggest contribution to greenhouse gas emissions. It is symbolical of the brutally exploitative nature of the oil industry in Niger that the by-product (which other oil producers like Trinidad liquefies and market) is simply burnt in giant flares which causes incalculable environmental damage”.
The Niger Delta is located in the Southern part of Nigeria, a geopolitical framework mainly populated by the Ijaw ethnic nationality. Spreading over a total landmass of about 70,00sqkm, the region is inhabited by an estimated population of 30milion Nigerians in 2000 communities as of 2005, accounting for more than 23% of Nigeria’s total population. In its present composition, the Niger Delta covers the six states of the South-South, namely, Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo and Rivers. This is so even though the definition given the Niger Delta by the Sir Henry Willink commission report of 1957 is much narrower.
However, the legislation on the NDDC, in 2000 has further extended the frontiers of the Niger Delta to include Abia, Imo and Ondo States, thus making the political map of the Niger Delta to comprise nine states. The Niger Delta communities have settled in the area for several millennia, the oldest group having been in the areas for some 7, to 10 thousand years. The primary occupations of the people include fishing, farming, forest product gathering, craft etc usually at subsistence level. However, the region is endowed with enormous natural resources. It has the world’s third largest mangrove forest with the most extensive freshwater swamp forest and tropical rainforest characterized by great biological diversity. Alongside the immense potential for agricultural revolution, the Niger Delta region also has vast reserves of non-renewable natural resources include clay pit for burnt brick making in the construction industry, and silica sand for the glass manufacturing industry which have however, remained largely untapped.
The idea of setting up a special government authority for the Niger Delta was first recommended by the Willink Commission Report of 1958. The said Commission observed inter alia that it is not easy for a government or legislature operating from inland to concern itself or even fully understand the problems of a territory where “communications are so difficult, building so expensive and education so scanty in a country which is unlikely ever to be developed. The Commission concluded:
We had no doubt that a feeling of neglect and a lack of understanding was widespread in both Religious (Western and Eastern Deltas). We consider that a case has been made out for special treatment of this area. This is a matter that requires special effort because it is poor, backward and neglected.
This was the prologue to the establishment of the Niger Delta Development Board (NDDB) in 1961: “to consider the problems of the area of the Niger Delta”. The practice thereafter ensued by successive governments establishing and renaming similar agencies. These include the Niger Delta Basin Development Authority (NDBDA) in 1976; the OMPADEC in 1992 and the present NDCC in 2000.
Though it is beyond purview of this paper to investigate how these commissions (miss) carried their responsibilities, it is nonetheless rather intriguing and unfortunate to observe that the local population of the Niger Delta are, and have always, ironically, lived in the most despicable environmental and social conditions. This situation was caused or aggravated by the 45 years of exploration and production activities which have been going on without due regard and attention on the part of both the oil companies and the government. It ought be mention however that the Obasanjo administration however, has the credit of committing on the Niger Delta development, within “the past six years of its existence, (the sum of) 210 billion .an amount more than what was spent in the area from 1960 to 1999” 138 That was why people criticize the NDDC with some asking : “Six’ years after the creation of the NDDC, there have been no practical steps to restore the destroyed means of livelihood of the people whose farmlands and
fishing occupation have cease to be useful due to pollution. One may then be right to add that the sorry state of the Niger Delta environment and its peoples is partly result of corruption on the part of the institutions manned and administered by the Niger Delta indigenous elites whose responsibility it was to better off the life of the people in the area over the years.
REGULATIONS OF OTHER JURISDICTIONS
Under this head, focus will be on the approach to Gas Flaring in (Alberta, Canda) which has been recommended as a successful way of reducing Gas Flaring. Flaring rates and Gas utilization methods of other countries will also be mentioned, and the approach to Gas Flaring on a Global Level via the Global Gas Flaring Reduction Partnership will also be addressed.
In some counties of the world, Gas flaring has been reduced or almost totally extinguished due to the fact that these countries recognized much earlier, the value of Natural Gas and did indeed pay more than lip – service in ensuring that it was adequately conserved and utilized. This is in contradistinction to the Nigerian position, where Gas flaring was overlooked because the government and the oil companies were more interested in reaping short -term profits from oil production and sale, and were not too keen on expending money on costly Gas re-injection or utilization facilities. This attitude led Nigeria to become the country that ranks highest in Gas Flaring, worldwide and thus, to be more prone to the attendant negative effects it breeds.
However, Nigeria does not stand-along when it comes to flaring, as practically every country, that produces oil and Gas in the world, is guilty of their fair share of gas flaring, although most of them have taken the wiser option of conservation and utilization of Natural Gas. In Western Europe for example, about 99 percent of associated gas is used or re-injected into the ground. In Canada, 92 percent of the gas is conserved or used in some way, while only 8 percent is flared. Also both Canada and America are in the habit of collecting gas for use as fuel.
In Norway, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate has stated that consumption of Natural Gas produced off-shore has increased in their country. Also, all natural gas burned offshore (consumption and flaring) is subject to a carbon dioxide tax of 0.72 NOK per standard cubic meter). Associated Gas produced in Norway is used in 3 ways, which are as follows:
(1) For Power Generation to drive compressors, pumps and other equipment on an offshore production platform;
(2) The gas is injected into the reservoir to maintain oil production by pressure support, and
(3) The gas is cleaned, compressed and transported by pipeline to a receiving terminal (in Norway or Continental Europe).
Also, non-Associated Gas produced in Norway is put to two uses (Power Generation and pipeline transport).
In 1999, it was reported in the Guardian that Holland had a zero gas flaring profile and that the United States accounted for only 0.6 percent of the total amount of gas flared globally. In the same report, Nigeria’s 76 percent flaring of Natural Gas was placed against Libya’s 21.0 percent and Algeria 4.0 percent. In another Newspaper Report in 1998, World Bank Energy specialist Mr. Arinze Agbim, a former executive director with Mobil Producing Nigeria Plc, started that while the total production flared and vented in Nigeria has only reduced from 95 percent in the 1970’s to about 75 percent in 1998, Malaysia had totally extinguished its flares from a 100 percent level over the same period, and in India, Flaring levels had been slashed in only four years from a 1994 peak of 23 percent, to less than nine percent in 1998.
In the United Kingdom, there is zero tolerance for gas flaring and this is evidence in the way the British successfully reduced flaring from 90 percent to around 2 percent. In the UK, gas flaring is currently being controlled by guidelines set up by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). Flares allowances are granted to oil and gas operators and under these guidelines, operators must demonstrate that they have not exceeded their flare allowance, and in order to achieve this, flow meters are used at production platforms and refineries to measure the amount of gas flared. However, because of space and operational constraints, these gas flow meters are sometimes installed in less than ideal configurations and this can lead to increase uncertainty in measurements.
Also under the Energy Act 1976, the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, for natural gas to be disposed of 9whether at source or elsewhere) by flaring or by releasing it un-ignited into the atmosphere (venting). This applies to all onshore hydrocarbon fields. The main purpose of this requirement is to ensure that gas is conserved where possible by avoiding unnecessary wastage during the production of hydrocarbons. The Department requires that flaring should be kept to the minimum that is technically and economically justified. The over aim is therefore to reduce gas flaring on an annual and basis and the Department has proved successful in reducing flare emissions. Its approach is also reviewed on a regular basis, to ensure that it is integrated fully with Governments policy on green house gas reductions.
Back here in Africa, the Ghanaian Government is promoting the use of LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas), which is to be derived from the refinery gas that is often flared in Ghana. The Government recognized that using the gas in this way, would entail a reduction targets set under the Kyoto protocol of the United Nations framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC). Due to its high calorific value, LPG is particularly suitable for cooking, heating and lighting in the home. It is also, relatively easy to store and to transport to more remote areas. The people running the Tema Oil Refinery in Ghana took active steps to recover this refinery gas compress and bottle it for distribution as LPG, because they saw it was a way to prevent waste of energy and reduce pollution. The use of LPG was also advocated as an alternative to the use of fuel wood, and its associated problem. The Tema Refinery saw the LPG as ticket to open up a new market for themselves with the potential of increased profits and, they even gave away free stoves to encourage the use of LPG.
Unfortunately, however, these stoves where made in a European design and were unsuitable for use with the traditional rounded pots favoured by most Ghanaians so the market for LPG stalled.
In the United Arab Emirate (UAE), tow projects designed to reduce Gas flaring have been completed by the Abu Dhabi Oil Company (ADOC), and are at present, fully operational. The first is the Sour Gas Injection Project, which was given its final commission in October 2000. This project was created to inject sour gas that was previously flared, into existing oil reservoirs, because environmental pressures made such flaring no longer acceptable. A preliminary Engineering study into the proposed project was undertaken early in 1997, and consultations made with organizations operating sour gas injection facilities in Canada and equipment suppliers, and it was agreed that sour Gas injection was a tenable option to use.
The second project implemented by the ADOC, is the Zero Gas Flaring Project. The ADOC operates three offshore Oil fields namely Mubarraz, Umm Al-Anbar (referred to as AR) and Neewat Al – Ghalan (referred to as GA). This second project was completed in April 2001 and it recovers sour gas flared at Mubarraz offshore Mubarraz Island for injection into the Oil reservoirs of AR and GA fields via sour gas injection facilities
The National Petroleum Construction Company (NPCC) was the Main contractor for both projects and as a result of the combined efforts of both projects, almost all the sour gas produced from ADOC’s Oil fields is now being recovered and injected into the oil reservoirs of AR and GA fields. Injection of sour gas in the above fields is
also said to have significantly enhanced oil recovery from those fields. Also, Exxon Mobil has disclosed on their website that they have reduced flaring at their Baytown refinery in Texas (United States), by more than 70 percent since 2002.