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ConocoPhillips Joins World Bank’s Efforts to Reduce Greenhouse Gases from Burning of Natural Gas

Press Release No:2008/144/SDN


World  Bank in Washington, DC:
Mauricio Rios (202) 458-2458

 ConocoPhillips in Houston, Texas:

Charlie Rowton (281) 293-2701


WASHINGTON, DC, December 12, 2007— The World Bank’s Global Gas Flaring Reduction partnership (GGFR) today welcomed ConocoPhillips’ decision to join and support the efforts of other oil producing countries and companies in minimizing the wasteful practice of burning natural gas –also known as gas flaring- and reducing greenhouse gases to mitigate the impact of climate change.


“We welcome ConocoPhillips into the GGFR partnership and look forward to working with them to reduce gas flaring. We hope that other major private oil producers, countries, and national oil companies worldwide will join these efforts as well,” said Somit Varma, director of the World Bank and IFC’s Oil, Gas, Mining and Chemicals department. “Gas flaring harms the environment and wastes a cleaner source of energy that could generate much needed electricity in poor countries.”


By joining GGFR, ConocoPhillips will be part of a select group of 10 major international oil companies and other important national oil companies from around the world that have expressed their commitment  to gas flaring reduction and are making efforts to minimize its practice by finding alternative uses for the gas associated with oil production, which is often burnt off, particularly in developing countries that lack sufficient infrastructure, have weak or non existent domestic gas markets, or have inadequate regulations that constrain the utilization of associated gas.


"ConocoPhillips is committed to minimizing the environmental impact and improving the energy and material efficiency of our operations,” observed Jim Mulva, chairman and chief executive officer of ConocoPhillips. “We are confident that the GGFR partnership will lead to major progress in reducing gas flaring around the world and we are very pleased to join the effort.”


The World Bank’s GGFR estimates that at least 150 billion cubic meters (or 5.3 trillion cubic feet) of natural gas are being flared and vented annually.  That is equivalent to 25 per cent of the United States’ gas consumption or 30 per cent of the European Union’s gas consumption per year. It is also estimated that global gas flaring releases about 400 million tons of CO2 per year into the atmosphere. This is almost the same as the potential annual emission reductions from projects currently submitted under the Kyoto mechanisms.


Last December, during a Global Forum on Flaring Reduction and Gas Utilization organized by GGFR in Paris, the World Bank called on oil producing countries and companies to step up efforts in reducing the burning of natural gas as a way of mitigating the impact of climate change and lowering greenhouse gas emissions.


The Global Gas Flaring Reduction is a public-private partnership of governments, state-owned companies and major international oil companies committed to reducing flaring and venting worldwide.  GGFR facilitates and supports national efforts to use the associated gas that comes with oil production and thus reduce flaring, by focusing on four key areas: commercialization of associated gas; regulations for associated gas; implementation of a global flaring and venting reduction standard; capacity building to obtain carbon credits for flaring and venting reduction projects.


The top 20 major flaring countries in the world include: Russia, Nigeria, Iran, Iraq, Angola, Venezuela, Qatar, Algeria, the United States, Kuwait, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Equatorial Guinea, Libya, Mexico, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Congo, the United Kingdom, and Gabon.




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