Colombia to Reduce Hydrocarbon Methane Emissions

01 March 2022

With the signing of resolution 40066 of February 11, 2022 by the Ministry of Mines and Energy, Colombia advances in the fulfillment of the commitments ratified at COP26 and becomes one of the few countries of the world to adopt a specific regulation for the control and reduction of fugitive methane emissions in the exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbons.

The resolution establishes the technical requirements for the detection and repair of leaks and the use, burning and venting of natural gas; In addition, it seeks to reduce the waste of natural gas to contribute to mitigation measures against climate change, by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

"Methane emissions are the second largest cause of global warming and reducing them is critical in the fight against climate change. In addition to the environmental benefits, lower emissions-intensive oil and gas operations may increasingly enjoy of a commercial advantage over the sources with the highest emissions," said the Minister of Mines and Energy, Diego Mesa.

The issuance of this regulation represents an advance in the Comprehensive Climate Change Management Plan proposed by the country's mining-energy sector, which, in its strategic line on fugitive emissions management, seeks to reduce up to 2.7 million tons of CO2 equivalent, which is equivalent to a quarter of the sector's mitigation goal for 2030.

Additionally, the regulation is a sign that it is with facts that the National Government advances in the commitments acquired in the framework of COP26, where Colombia decided to be part of the Global Methane Pledge, an initiative in which the participating countries agree to take voluntary actions in order to reduce global methane emissions by at least 30% from 2020 levels by 2030, which could eliminate more than 0.2°C of warming by 2050.

Courtesy of Columbia Ministry of Mines and Energy.